Fun look at the perks of leaving the house to work in a professional VO recording studio
In today’s VO world, having a professional home studio to record voiceovers is a must. But have you worked in a professional recording studio in the last 10 years during the time when online casting took off with voice actors recording from home?
If not, you may be missing out on these perks:
1. No need to worry about editing and you get direction
Yes, you may read copy well and have great equipment, but what about the editing part? It does take practice. The good thing about having someone to do that for you is that it allows the voice actor to focus solely on “how to read the script”.
Little anxieties like, “I read well, but will I edit well?!”, can affect the way a voice actor reads. Many voice acting classes, or acting classes in general, focus on “getting out of your head” before reading a script.
If you have something on your mind, it does affect the way you sound whether you know it or not.
2. Breaking from the typical work-at-home regimen can be inspirational, creative “brain food”
Going to a professional recording studio means putting yourself in an environment with creative people, who have paid to set up a creative space, in order to get the best voiceover recording. There is face-to-face reassurance and voices letting you know when something is working and not working, allowing you to adjust your read on the spot. You have people to look at, nod heads in agreement or disagreement, or pick up on vocal signals from a director that something just flopped or succeeded.
Needless to say, recording at home does not offer such a thing, even with sessions from studio to studio. The very fact that you surround yourself with creative types gives you more to work with in the future, more so than the creative inspiration provided by convincing your neighbor to turn off his lawnmower.
The “brain food” involved simply comes from doing something “new”. Doing something new wakes up the brain and opens it up for more creative expression and flexibility. As people, we tend to get into work cycles of behavior that may or may not be working well for a career. Breaking from a work regimen gives a person the chance to absorb and compare the two work regimens to see which one works better.
3. The marketing opportunity and feeling of being a “voice actor” and nothing more
The interesting thing about social media is how it often remains more active than the actual person. If you post once after one activity, and 3000 people read it, did it occur 3000 times? If a person stays in his/her basement all day working on voiceover gigs, while tweeting or posting about it, you may get a sense of envy that you are not doing enough and someone else is a hard working voice actor. There is truth to the statement, “They are hard working.”, but if you believe the voice actor is somehow living a lavish life style…you may be forgetting he/she still never left the house. Social media has a strange way of influencing perceptions, making one believe that someone else has an amazing voiceover career, while the reality is quite different.
However, if you go to a professional voiceover studio, you are doing the type of work everyone thought about when they got into voiceovers or watched a program on TV. There are also pictures to prove that a business was willing to pay lots of money to rent a studio to hire you, hire an audio engineer, and you have great pictures to prove it, with an upscale level of finished work later on.
Now, does this mean certain type of voiceover work is beneath other work? NO, not at all, but would you rather market yourself with videos and pics of you working in your home or an advertising agency? Ultimately, voiceover work is work, but there is a different feeling about being hired to go to a studio to record. You can hear a difference.
Finally…Getting out of the house!
Did you start working from home as a voice actor, and a year later notice that you did not have the energy you once had? Maybe you put on a few pounds or walking up a flight of stairs makes you tired? Going out to auditions means walking, standing up, and getting the body moving. It means making yourself presentable for new people you will meet. It means getting some air and not worrying about tasks around the house. It gets your heart racing and your blood pumping.
Working from home is great. Do not get us wrong. It does save money to not have to commute to auditions, but going to voiceover studios for jobs and auditions is still a great way to keep the career moving and shaking.
If for some reason you only work from home, we offer this advice: Work hard and play hard. Get out of your house and do something energetic or creative. It keeps your body from falling into a negative cycle of just waking up, rolling into the booth at home, and just going through the motions (which often makes someone difficult to direct).
Happy June! 😀