Voice over artists (sometimes called voice actors) are the auditory performers behind everything from video games to commercials and e-learning courses. They usually take voice training lessons to fine-tune their instrument and learn the nuances of the craft. It’s important for them to be able to adapt their style depending on the needs of each project. For example, a commercial may require an assertive, corporate sound while an audiobook could call for a soothing, literary delivery.
Voice-over artists work primarily in professional recording studios or from their home computers and microphones. This is a huge benefit to this type of performance career as it allows them the freedom to choose when they want to work, as well as to avoid scheduling conflicts and travel expenses. Having the ability to record and edit high-quality audio on their own also gives them the flexibility to audition for jobs, even if they’re not located in a major city or have access to an expensive studio session.
Most voice-over professionals tend to specialise in a niche for which they become known. This can range from a particular genre of film, such as dubbed foreign language films, to specific types of narration or animation work. They may be able to watch the film or video game they’re working on while they record, allowing them to keep their tone and inflection consistent with the visual representation of the scene.
Many people have misconceptions about what it takes to be a successful voice over artist, such as the need for a deep, soothing or dramatic voice. However, this is not necessarily true. A lot of popular voice over artists, like Don LaFontaine, had regular voices when they started their careers and worked their way up the ladder with hard work.