Voice acting is a unique and exciting career that allows individuals to use their vocal talents to bring characters to life. Voice actors are in demand in a variety of industries, including film, television, video games, commercials, podcasts and more.
People become voice actors for a variety of reasons. Some are drawn to the creative nature of the work and the opportunity to bring characters to life through their voices. Others appreciate the flexibility of the profession, which allows for remote work and freelance opportunities. Salaries for voice actors can vary widely depending on factors such as experience level and the type of project they are working on. Top voice actors earn six-figure salaries.
To get started in voice acting, many begin by freelancing. There are several freelance websites where voice actors can find work. Some popular options include Voices, Fiverr, Upwork, Freelancer.com, Guru, and Peopleperhour. These sites offer a range of opportunities for voice actors at different experience levels and price ranges.
To become a voice actor, one should have experience in acting methods and vocal techniques. Some important techniques include warming up and performing vocal exercises before any voice-acting session. This can include full body stretching, facial stretches, and airflow exercises. Voice actors should also be skilled at character-driven performances, using their vocal tone to convey emotion. Mastering accents and dialects is another important skill for voice actors. Analyzing and interpreting scripts is also crucial for voice actors, as it allows them to understand the character they are portraying and deliver a convincing performance. Experimenting with vocal tones and emotions can help voice actors develop their range and versatility. Continuously honing their acting skills and embracing feedback from others can also help voice actors improve their craft.
Many voice actors begin their careers by learning to act on stage or in films. A bachelor’s degree in acting or theater arts can provide valuable experience in performing and knowledge of fundamental acting principles. Acting classes and workshops can also help individuals improve their abilities by learning from experts with proficiency in techniques like characterization, vocalization, and interpretation.
Voice actors should also have technical knowledge of audio equipment, sound recording techniques and audio software like Adobe Audition, Audacity and Apple GarageBand. These are just a few of the software packages used by voice talent.
There are many famous voice actors who have brought beloved characters to life through their vocal talents. Some examples include Mel Blanc, who voiced nearly every character on Looney Tunes, and Tara Strong, who has starred in animations like The Fairly OddParents, Rugrats, The Powerpuff Girls, as well as the Final Fantasy video game series. Actor James Earl Jones, known for saying “This is CNN” is best known as the voice of Darth Vader in the Star Wars franchise. A Generation X hero is Peter Cullen, known for his vocal portrayal of Optimus Prime through several generations of the Transformers franchise. Interestingly, Optimus Prime’s nemesis, Megatron is often voiced by actor Frank Welker, who is believed to have more vocal acting credits than anyone else, with nearly 900 film, television, and video game roles. Although most people have never heard of him, with a total worldwide box-office gross of $17.4 billion, Frank Welker is the third highest-grossing actor of all time!