Voiceover Lessons for Beginners

My new instructional series, Voiceover Lesson for Beginners, is now live. The lessons are short, focused videos/podcasts which guide voiceover students from complete beginner to working performer in a logical, step-by-step series. Each Lesson gives useful information, generally focused on a single topic, then concludes with a simple assignment that is designed to build voice acting skills from the ground up. They will be available here, on my YouTube channel, and on popular podcasting platforms.

Is Voiceover Right For You?

Voiceover Lessons for Beginners #3

In this Lesson, we examine three core characteristics of successful voice actors.

Questions & comments to jmvopodcast@gmail.com

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The Lessons on YouTube

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Text Synopsis:

Lesson focus: examine three core characteristics of successful voice actors share, so that you can better determine if voiceover work is a good match for you. Conclude with assignment.

1st Core Characteristic: Performance Instinct. An ability or tendency to bring to life the verbal expression of information, character or situation [my definition]. Examples: born actor, class clown, great storyteller, natural educator (loves explaining things), natural mimic.

2nd Core Characteristic: Motivation. Highly motivated or goal oriented; tend to persevere and see things through; strong desire for self-improvement and growth; dedicated to learning; hard workers; enjoy a challenge.

3rd Core Characteristic Entrepreneurship. Like starting, building, and running a business; comfortable trading the security of a regular job for the flexibility of being self-employed; enjoy creating & finishing projects for themselves.

You do not necessarily need a “great voice” to get work, many voice types are used in media. Your voice type will determine the types of work you’re most likely to be considered for – but your abilities as a performer will book you the job. And of course, talent is helpful too.

This is not a complete list, and keep in mind, everybody’s different – no two voice actors share the exact same set of characteristics. You don’t need to possess all of these qualities to be successful.

Assignment: take your daily practice reading to the next level by adding a simple direction to each read. Meaning, instead of just reciting the words off the page, add a mood or tone or attitude to give it some personality. Keep it very simple to start, then add nuance later. Take a look at my practice copy and directions to get started. Flexibility and being able to take direction quickly are very important in voice work, and this exercise will help develop those skills.

Watch Lesson 4 when available, and keep practicing!

Text, voice performance, video edit and the JMVO logo copyright John Matthew, all rights reserved; unauthorized use is prohibited.
Other graphic elements, certain sound effects, music copyright Canva and/or their associated artists, and are used under license in this video.

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Who Does Voiceovers?

Voiceover Lessons for Beginners #2

In this Lesson, we talk about the many different people doing voiceover work.

Questions & comments to jmvopodcast@gmail.com

The Lessons on YouTube

Listen for free on Spotify

Text Synopsis:

Who are the voice actors? Voiceover is largely an acting job, so a lot of the work is done by on-camera and theatrical actors and voice acting specialists who only do voice work. Other performers such as standup comedians, singers, and public speakers do VO work because they have to be able to communicate with conviction and emotional content, which is a key component of acting. People in related fields like broadcasting, advertising and film & television are in close proximity to VO work, and so some will naturally fall into it. There are also voice talent that have jobs or businesses in unrelated fields.

Can you become a voice actor? Yes, if you possess the interest, some talent, and are willing to put in the time and effort. Not everyone will become a voiceover star, but many make a living or a decent side income working either full or part time.

Assignment: Start reading out loud, at least 10 to 20 minutes a day. Practice material can be anything – newspaper, magazine, a book; I’ve posted some practice copy here [link]. Or, go to YouTube, find a piece of media you like, and transcribe the VO part. This is a great way to get practice copy because you can compare the script to the finished product, and you’ll hear what the client wanted the actor to do with that script. No need to record at this point – and don’t worry about the acting right now if you’ve never done any – the focus now is getting comfortable reading out loud. If you already have some experience, feel free to skip ahead to later lessons.

Then watch Lesson 3and keep practicing!

Text, voice performance, video edit and the JMVO logo copyright John Matthew, all rights reserved; unauthorized use is prohibited.
Other graphic elements, certain sound effects, music copyright Canva and/or their associated artists, and are used under license in this video.