In A World...Where Jess Is A Voice Over Artist!

my insatiable curiosity mixed with my love affair with the film and television industry led me to a 4-week (8 hr) voice over course. @DawnCloud thought it might be nice to follow my progress.
  1. [week one]
  2. When I learned the man outside in the striped lemon shorts and bright yellow polo shirt who was smoking an old school pipe was our tutor I knew this is where I needed to be.
  3. His personality and voice matched the flamboyant outfit and regal pipe. He introduced himself with commercials we'd recognize and then suggested, done well, we can earn enough in voice over to buy a double story house in a good suburb.
  4. Our first hour was dedicated to breathing and stance. I was all up in my shoulders and had the poise of a ballerina. As soon as I learned I needed to turn on my inner yogi, I relaxed my shoulders, breathed via my stomach, tucked in my pelvis and paralleled my stance!
  5. Learning to remove the nasality from our Australian accents was a simple matter of uvula tickling mouth breathing. All the while our tutor chopped and changed his accent with every uvula tickling breath. We practiced breathing in to our belly for counts of 3, 5, 7 and 10 and breathing out a commercial about entrepreneurial Ugandan coffee roasters.
  6. Feedback: I do not have a nasality issue (this is a good thing! It means I'm more American/British vocally than I am Australian!). I need to focus on my breathing. Finding my character in the scripts and bringing out more performance will earn me a "I'll pay that" from our tutor!
  7. Our homework is reading our commercial scripts using our belly breathing and uvula tickling technique. I'll update next Tuesday with week two's shenanigans!
  8. [week two]
  9. We've changed venues and are now in an old 1940's theatre! And well, didn't it bring out the drama queens in all of us! Last night's VO class was so much fun.
  10. So, the great news is "I got paid" (twice 😏)! For those new to this list, that just means I nailed my commercial. I nailed a few actually, I think I was less stressed about the breathing and just went for it. It was a great night for me.
  11. We did the 1 minute coffee commercial and it's 30 second version. A commercial about Norte Refresher health drink, 5-Gum, 7-11, 7Up (which got that Yazz song in my head). Ok, so one of the boys was struggling to get their energy up for that ad so I just started singing "the only way is up" and it helped. I'm a giver!
  12. Our VO coach is wildly inappropriate and I think that's helping me! In a round about way I'm feeling more comfortable and that I fit in! Which, in turn is helping me lose any vocal inhibition! I haven't done any character acting (work) in so very long yet it's coming back to me, little by little.
  13. Feedback: I need to remember to keep to my lower register. My sing-song voice and timing/pauses were good. I know in myself that I still have to master this little thing called breathing though and get better resonance with my vocal warm ups.
  14. [week three]
  15. Shit got interesting this week!! Our VC started casting our voices. My friend was the 'young mum' or 'the girl'. I am 'the woman' or 'the seductress' 🙈. My new motto: if it pays! I blame my deep, rich register.
  16. We did more skills work, focusing on upper lip movement and relaxing the jaw. The entire class was one giant double entendre.
    Apologies @Lisa_Fav for the use (or misuse) of entendre.
  17. I was paid again tonight, yet with less fervor than last week. Is my coach bored of 'paying me' already?! This isn't boding well. He gave me my best compliment (feedback yet), "you my lady are close to professional, you're just missing experience, which you'll get". It felt like receiving a rose from Nick.
    Yes, I'm watching The Bachelor ;)
  18. I did my first accent tonight. I think it was Texan or thereabouts. I was nervous as hell because my friend drops accents like Snoop drops fine beats. @ me negs about Snoop and we have immediate issues.
  19. Next week is the last week and then we'll be recording out demos. It's a good thing that my Adelaide trip was too expensive because I nearly double booked myself! I need my brain back. I think I left it at uni!
  20. Feedback: I need to practice an Aspen soft drink ad as 'the seductress'. Practice all the skills we've learned; breathing and sounds. Start thinking about my demo reel and the voices I'll be recording. I think I might prepare 3 commercials and an audiobook reading.
  21. Bonus: a little snippet of me fucking up an Amstel Light reading, just for @k8mcgarry because she asked so kindly. I'll also put my reel up when I'm finished 😋
  22. [week four]
  23. Weird energy for our last VO class. One of the kids had just come from hospital after having food poisoning. Our coach was a bit cranky. I was knackered from my run. The other two were rocking a weird energy too.
  24. After a late start, there was a film audition taking place in our room*, we busted into our last set of skills. Focusing on loosening the lips and isolating the tongue.
    *which incidentally my VO coach was adamant about auditioning for ("go for everything you can", "make sure they remember you"). He didn't audition. Class was cut short.
  25. I had some good reads. Truly though, the vibe was so off I spent a lot of my energy focusing on not letting it affect my reads. I got 'paid' a couple times. At the end we discussed the demo reel recording happening on Sunday. My friend and I have a private class to prep for it.
  26. Feedback: I was given great feedback in that I was the only one in the course who managed to read from both my head and heart using timing and rhythm. That was super encouraging. After I asked what reads to prepare for my demo reel, he suggested 'expensive'. Apparently my voice lends itself to luxury goods!
    Has anyone done this?! I'd love advice from any listers who have. Either leave in comments or DM me if you have voice over experience.
  27. [private class] today I shared a private class with my in-class friend Bec. We will both be recording reels and thought it important to nail our readings. We learned a couple more skills and by the end, finished with 4 polished readings. We were both given great feedback and told we were ready.
    Our recording has been pushed to next Saturday. Bit of a pain, but at least we have a week to prepare.