Surviving lockdown and working in voiceover through a pandemic

With the creative industry at a standstill thanks to Covid-19, and our usual income streams dried up, we’ve all been left wondering how on earth we are going to survive lockdown.

However, the voiceover industry is very much alive and kicking. Now, more than ever, is the time to get involved. And to make that easier, we’ve put together three easy steps you can take to find work in voiceover during COVID – 19.

1 – Build on your voiceover toolkit.

I know it’s tempting to sit and watch Netflix all day, but when will you ever have this much free time in your life again? Now is the time to watch a few YouTube tips and tutorial videos (we recommend Booth Junkie and Mike Russell) , take advantage of online coaching sessions ( get in touch to find out more about these), and get familiar with the world of remote recording and home voiceover.

2 – Get a home set up, no matter how basic

Now more than ever companies are looking for good quality home recording setups, and these can be built by anyone – if you get the right help.

It’s all very well getting ready to make it as a VO artist, but if you haven’t got the equipment at home at the moment, I’m afraid you will find yourself at a loose end (recording studios are largely still shut and will be for the foreseeable future). This means it’s on YOU to be the voice, editor and producer.

It’s not as complicated as you might think. Whether you use a USB mic plugged into your laptop and you hide under a duvet, or squeeze yourself into a converted cupboard – get to grips with your budget and get creative. We can run you through the best setup for your environment, skills and budget in our hourly coaching sessions ( get in touch to find out more).

3 – Know where to find the work

Once you’ve completed steps one and two above, you need to start thinking about where this new revenue will come from. To lots of people’s surprise there are actually many platforms where you can start to book work as a VO artist.

If you are new to the world of voiceover, Fiverr o r People per hour might be for you.

Or, if you are a little further along in your journey you can check out Voquent , Voicebunny or Bodalgo .

These are all independent platforms who book direct with you, the artist. No agency required.

Most importantly, remember that although it is good to be motivated and productive during lockdown, in order to come through this period stronger, we must listen to our bodies, take rest when we need and not be hard on ourselves if we decide to take a day off – working during a global crisis is not the same as any other working day.

There is work out there in VO for everyone who wants it enough, whether it’s corporate, commercial, audiobook or gaming. If you are at the start of your journey and are unsure what your next steps are, get in touch and let’s have a chat.

Stay safe and keep creating.


How Can You Stand Out As A Voice Actor?

One of the first major challenges that a lot of people come up against when they first start trying to get work as a voice-over artist is that it is one of the most competitive industries out there. After all, there are plenty of people who decide that they want to be able to earn a living from doing funny voices, but only a few of those are actually going to be able to make it. The question for you then becomes how are you going to make sure that you’re able to set yourself apart from such a large crowd? Well, here are three surprisingly simple things that you can do to make sure that you stand out as a voice actor.

Find your niche

One of the most important things to remember is that most voice-over productions will be looking for very specific voices for very specific reasons. Whether they’re looking for a particular character in a narrative or a certain tone for an instructional video, most voice directors know what they’re looking for. Because of that, it’s a good idea to understand what your niche is and where your skills lie. Sure, versatility is crucial for any voice-over artist but if there is a certain style that your skills align with, it’s often a good idea to lean into that so that directors and studios looking for what you have to offer can be sure that you’re the person for them.

Make a good impression

The author Niel Gaiman once said that the three things you need to be successful are to be a genius, to be on time, and to be pleasant to work with. He then said that you only really need two of them and if you have to choose, choose to be on time and to be pleasant to work with. The biggest mistake that you can make is to assume that talent is going to carry you. If you really want to get work, and keep getting work, you need to make sure that you’re someone people are going to want to work with. People don’t want to work with prima donnas no matter how skilled they are.

Never stop pushing yourself

If you reach a point where you start getting work as a voice-over artist, it can be tempting to think that you’ve essentially made it and suddenly you no longer have to put the work in to improve. No matter how long you’ve been working as a voice-over artist, you need to keep pushing yourself and developing your skills. One of the great things about recording with Notable Voices is that we offer a great deal of coaching to help you make sure that you’re always at the top of your game.

One thing that you need to remember is that it’s not just a matter of trying to stand out until you finally “break in” to the industry. The voice-over industry is one that moves fast and you need to be willing to keep working and doing what you can to stand out no matter what stage of your career you find yourself.


How Can You Properly Practice Voice Acting?

One of the most common mistakes that a lot of people make when it comes to voice acting is that they assume it’s some kind of innate talent. They listen to other voice over artists and assume that the ability to give a truly great performance is something that you’re just born with. Sure, there’s no doubt that talent is a factor but the reality is that most of the truly great VO performances that you hear are the result of a whole lot of hard work and practice. Which raises the question: what are the best ways to practice and improve as a voice over artist?

Technical skills

Far too often, amateur voice actors assume that their ability to do all kinds of different voices is all that really matters when it comes to finding work. While this isn’t technically wrong, it’s a kind of limited perspective. The reality is that the vast majority of casting agents and directors are looking for voice actors who can turn in great performances and great performances always start with the fundamental technical skills. This means everything from being able to regulate your breathing to controlling the volume of your voice to having great mic skills. Without these technical skills, it won’t matter how impressive the range of voices you can do is.


Of course, that doesn’t mean that you should forget all about trying to stretch yourself and find new ways to use your voice. If you spend all of your time exclusively practising a few specific things, you run the risk of being completely lost when you’re asked to do something different. When you’re practising and developing as a voice actor, being versatile is one of the most important skills you can foster. That way you’re not only going to be a better fit for different types of work but it allows you to adjust your performance based on feedback far more easily.

Getting into good habits

It’s actually a whole lot easier than you might think for a lot of voice over artists to pick up some seriously bad habits. Sometimes those habits can result in a worse performance and other times they can actually damage your voice. These kinds of things are pretty understandable a lot of the time. After all, no one is going to be able to do something perfectly every single time. The best possible way to ensure that you’re developing good habits as a voice actor is to work with a professional. At Notable Voices, we offer voice coaching that not only helps you improve your skills but ensures that you’re aware of the best practices so that you can avoid making some incredibly easy and common mistakes.

Remember, your voice is your tool and like any other tool, it needs to be honed and sharpened in order to produce the best possible work. Make sure to keep honing your natural skills and talents as a voice actor. The fundamentals of VO practice are just as important when you’re in your tenth year of working as a voice over artist as they are when you’re in your first.


How Can You Make A Truly Great Voice Reel?

When you’re working as a voice-over artist, there’s no doubt that there is one thing that is the most important tool in your tool belt: your voice reel. Your voice reel is going to be the thing that lets people know what you’re going to be able to bring to their project and, in the end, is the thing that’s going to get you hired. Because of that, you’re going to want to make sure that it is as fantastic as it can possibly be. Of course, that can often be a little easier said than done, especially if you’re not exactly sure where to start. In order to help you make the best possible impression when trying to get voice-over work, here are some ways to make sure that your voice reel is the best it can possibly be.

Choose your style of reel

You may consider yourself to be an incredibly versatile voice actor and that’s great! Having a wide range when it comes to the performances you can give is always important. However, you also need to understand that most voice-over productions are going to be looking to fill specific roles. That means that you have to understand what kind of voice reel you want to create. Commercial? Narrative? Gaming? Corporate? All of these are totally valid styles but if your reel is too scattershot then that’s going to make it a lot harder than you might think to leave a lasting impression.

Get some training

You might have a great deal of natural talent but in an industry as competitive as voice acting, you’re going to need a little more than that. You need to be able to develop and train your voice to the highest standard possible. At Notable Voices, not only will we help you record an incredibly high-quality voice reel but we will offer plenty of support in everything from microphone technique to full days of VO coaching. Assuming that natural talent is going to carry you through your career is almost always a recipe for disaster. Your voice is your tool, you’ve got to keep it sharp.

Be open to feedback

One of the biggest mistakes that a lot of voice actors make, especially those who are just starting out, is that they record a voice reel and then don’t bother to show it to anyone before sending it out to studios and directors. One of the most important things that you can do is to get honest feedback from people whose opinion you trust. At Notable Voices, we can offer you that kind of constructive criticism but it’s also worth showing your reel to friends and even other voice actors to get valuable feedback.

Of course, it’s also pretty important to remember that it’s not just your voice reel that’s going to get you work. You also need to make sure that you’re someone people will want to work with. Being on time, being prepared , and being able to adjust to the needs of the project are all essential qualities in a great voice actor and are going to be almost as valuable as a great voice reel.


How Can You Give The Best Voice-Over Performance Under Pressure?

One of the biggest surprises that a lot of new voice actors come up against is the realisation of just how much of a fast-paced, high-pressure environment the voice-over industry can be. A lot of the time you will find yourself in either an audition or at a job where you don’t have nearly as much time to prepare as you would like, where you don’t necessarily know what you’re going to be saying, and where pretty much everything is unfamiliar. This can be a pretty intimidating situation, especially if you’re still new to the world of voice-over. However, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t things that you can do give great performances, even in tight situations.

Be versatile

Having a niche as a voice actor is often a really good thing. It means that you’ll be the first person that casting directors think of when they’re looking for actors. However, it’s also important to make sure that you don’t end up letting that limiting your range. If you’re coming into an audition when you don’t know exactly what the job would require, you need to be able to shift your style, tone and delivery on a dime. This is not a skill that comes easily and it takes a lot of practice, but it’s one of the most important skills that you can develop as a voice actor.

Listen to the director

Whether you’re in an audition or you’re working, there will almost certainly come a moment where the director asks you to change something or gives you some kind of feedback. This can be pretty scary, especially during auditions, because it makes you feel as though you’re doing something wrong. However, the difference between those who succeed as voice-over artists and those who don’t is whether or not they’re able to listen and respond appropriately to feedback. If you record your voice reel with Notable Voices, you will get a great deal of feedback and coaching which not only helps bring up the quality of your reel but lets you get a feel for responding to feedback and criticism in real time in a safe environment.

Be confident in your abilities

The pace of the voice-over industry means that you often have to get through auditions and performances pretty quickly. This means that the worst thing you can do is to second guess yourself. If you’re presented with a script then it’s important that you have confidence in your ability to deliver the right performance. Wasting time by going back and forth over what to do is going to make a far worse impression than giving a performance and then having to change it based on feedback.

It would be wonderful to be in a position where every audition or voice acting job you went to was as relaxed as possible so that you could prepare and feel confident that you’re going to deliver a perfect performance. Sadly, that’s just not the nature of the beast. You need to be able to work around those kinds of limitations if you want to succeed in what is an incredibly competitive and challenging industry.


How Can You Actually Get Paid As A Voice Over Artist?

So you’ve decided that you want to become a voice over artist? Awesome! Voice acting is one of the most amazing and rewarding careers out there. Getting to use your skills, your passion, and your creativity to earn a living is the kind of thing that everyone would love to be able to do. Which raises one incredibly important question: how do you actually go about earning a living as a voice actor? Well, the truth is that question can be pretty complicated, but there are certainly some things that you can do to start using your pipes to pay the bills. Here are just a couple of the first steps that you can take to go from voice acting as a hobby to being a fully fledged voice over artist.

Do you get an agent or go it alone?

One of the first questions that a lot of people ask when they’re trying to break into the voiceover industry is whether or not they need an agent. There are those who will tell you that you’ll never get your foot in the door without an agent but that’s not necessarily true. There are plenty of very successful voice actors who are able to get work entirely independently. Sites such as and Mandy are prime examples of how a freelance Voice actor can bring in a second income without needing an agent at all. The important thing is to consider which option is right for you. Being independent might take more work but you have a huge amount of control over what kind of jobs you go in for, which a lot of people can find extremely appealing. Either way, you’re going to need a great demo reel to send out. Here at Notable Voices, we not only offer voice demo reel recordings but professional voice coaching as well so that your demo reel always sounds perfect.

Choose your field

Once you’ve decided which direction you’re getting into the industry from, you need to think about where you’re going to be working. The voiceover business isn’t just one huge monolith, it’s a bunch of different, smaller fields that you can choose from. Whether it’s animation, gaming, E-learning, audiobooks, or any other industry that uses voice over, you may find that you’re drawn to one specific area or that there’s one that fits with your skills and vocal style the most. Of course, you may find that you’re happy working within any area of the industry. The key is to be sure that you can adjust to the needs of any given job whenever you need to. The more work you’re able to do, the better your chances of actually earning a decent living.

The most important thing to remember is that there really is no set rule for how you can or should go about getting work as a voice over artist. Whether you decide to work with an agent or decide to go it alone, or whether you choose to work in TV, gaming, animation, or any combination of them all, it simply comes down to what you want out of your career. But whatever you want to get out of it, you’ve got to be willing to put in the time and effort to make it happen for yourself.


Essential Gear Every Voice Over Artist Needs

The question of what equipment you should use is maybe the most common thing asked by many people looking to get started as voice over artists. After all, whether you’re working on a voice reel, an audition, or you’re sending a take over to the director, you want to be sure that everything is the highest quality possible and the right equipment can make a huge difference to that.

Of course, the reality is that not all recording equipment is created equal. With that in mind, here are some pieces of essential gear that every voice over artist needs.


The first and most obvious tool in any voice actor’s toolkit is a microphone. There are a whole lot of different microphones out there to choose from and it’s essential to understand what sets them apart from one another. As a voice over artist, the best option is always going to be a condenser microphone. Condenser mics have greater sensitivity and can pick up on the nuances and dynamics of your performance, something that’s essential when working in VO. Something like a Rode NT1-A is a great choice. For one thing, it has a flat frequency response to it’s going to capture your voice as accurately as possible. It also has a cardioid pattern which means that you’re going to get a lot less interference from sounds coming from behind the microphone.

Audio interface

The concept of an audio interface can sometimes seem a little odd but the basic concept is that an audio interface takes the signal from your microphone and puts it into your computer’s recording software. As simple as this is, it’s still important to find the right interface. The best thing to look for when using an audio interface is a powerful pre-amp. A pre-amp amplifies the electrical signal created when you speak into a microphone. Without a great pre-amp, your recordings are unlikely to reach the quality that you need as a professional voice over artist. For those looking to find a quality interface without spending the earth, the Scarlett 2i2 and Audience ID4 are both great options.

Digital audio workstation

A digital audio workstation, or DAW, is the software that you actually use when creating any kind of recording. There are a lot of different DAWs available on the market with various different benefits. As a VO artist, it’s unlikely that you’re going to need something with the kind of bells and whistles that the really expensive DAWs provide. In truth, things like Reaper and Audacity are absolutely fit for your purposes as a voice actor while letting you work within a limited budget.

One important thing to remember is that your equipment is an essential part of being a VO artist, but it’s not going to instantly create perfect performances by itself. The right equipment can give your performance more life and clarity, but your voice is still the most important tool you have. You need to be sure that you’re paying just as much attention to your control over your voice, microphone technique, and your understanding of the kind of performance that’s required of you as you pay to the kind of equipment that you use.


Do You Really Need An Industry Grade Microphone To Record A Voice-Over?

One of the most common reasons why a lot of people find the idea of becoming a voice actor so appealing is that it seems like the kind of thing that they can do from home. After all, you really only need your voice and a microphone, right? Well, no. Sure, you could record yourself reading from a script in your echoing spare room on a Blue Yeti but the truth is that no one is going to take you even remotely seriously. Not only that but that’s just about the worse way to show off what you can do as a voice over artist. It might not be the answer that you were looking for, but you really do need to use industry grade equipment in a professional setting if you want to make it as a voice over artist, and here are just a few reasons why.

It puts the full range of your voice on display

You might think that your voice sounds just fine on your USB microphone or the one build into your computer, but the truth is that it doesn’t matter how good a voice actor you are, if you record into low-quality equipment, a low-quality product is going to come out. One of the main reasons that this happens is that cheaper microphones that hobbyists might use simply don’t have the ability to pick up the full range of frequencies in your voice. This is something called the microphone’s frequency response. This is why your home recordings may come out sounding tinny without any real bass frequencies at all. Your voice might be incredibly smooth, but we all sound kind of like Joe Pasquale recorded on a low-quality mic. At Notable Voices, we have a Neuman TLM 103 which can record your voice as it truly is in incredibly high audio quality. You might think your home recordings sound fine, but when you hear the real thing, you’ll never want to go back.

It shows that you’re serious

Another reason why it’s essential that you record your voice demo reel and any work on industry-grade equipment at a vocal recording studio is that it shows the people responsible for hiring you that you’re serious about getting voice over work. Directors, producers, and casting agents are constantly being sent home-recorded demo reels and most of them just get thrown out. If you want someone within the voice over industry to take you seriously, you need to show them that you’re worth taking seriously in the first place!

Recording in a studio gives you the chance for extra support and guidance

The other major issue with recording at home on your own microphone is that you don’t have the guidance of industry professionals to help you produce the best possible recording. The professional vocal coaching that we provide at Notable Voices not only helps you with your vocal technique but also guidance and direction on sound design while you record. If you’re not recording in a professional studio, then you could end up falling into bad habits without realizing it.

It might feel a little discouraging at first to learn that your home-recorded demo reel isn’t really up to scratch when it comes to getting voice over jobs. However, you should take comfort in the fact that there are studios like Notable Voices who are able to help you create something that’s going to give you the best possible chance to turn voice acting into your career.


Common Mistakes When Setting Up A Home Studio

When working as a voice over artist, it’s pretty common to need to get a lot of your recording done in your own space. Whether you’re recording material for an audition, a voice reel, or you’re working on a project remotely, you can’t always guarantee that you’re going to be able to record in a professional studio. Of course, even if you’re not in a studio, you want to be sure that your recordings are the highest quality possible. Because of that, it’s essential that you set up a home recording space that meets your needs. However, there are a lot of easy mistakes that can potentially ruin any recordings you produce. Here are some of the most common problems and mistakes that voice over artists run into when recording at home and how to avoid them.

Ambient noise

It would be wonderful to have the ability to tell the world to be quiet while you’re working to get the best possible take. However, that’s not really possible so the best alternative you can hope for is to create the quietest space possible. This means that you don’t want to be recording in any environment where there are lots of noises going on. Whether it’s the sound of a radiator that needs bleeding, a humming computer, or pets demanding to be fed, it’s essential that you eliminate any ambient noise that could end up worming its way into your recording.

Room resonance

Just because you’ve cut out any ambient noises, that doesn’t mean that the space you record in isn’t potentially going to impact the recording. Anyone who’s ever noticed the difference between sounds in a bathroom and a bedroom will be fully aware of this. You want any recording space to be as sonically “dead” as possible. Soundproofing pads are not only useful so you don’t annoy your neighbours but they also prevent sounds reflecting off the walls back into the microphone creating an echo or ring that can ruin the sound of your recording. Even simple things like placing a rug or carpet on the floor can work wonders when trying to deaden the sound of your room.

Mic technique

It’s also a good idea to work on your mic technique as well. If you’re too far away from the microphone then any interference from the space around you is going to come across far more intensely. You want to be close enough that your voice is the loudest thing the mic picks up without getting so close that you overload it entirely.

If you’re looking to record something like your voice real, the best option may well be to use a professional studio space. After all, if you’re going to be sending your voice reel out to casting directors, you want to be sure that it’s the highest quality possible. Our professional voice reel service gives you the opportunity to create a reel that’s not only professionally recorded, but we also offer coaching and support to make sure that you can give the best possible performance as well.


The voice actor’s guide to freelancing

When it comes to working as a voice over artist, it’s almost inevitable that you’re also going to enter the world of freelancing. It’s pretty rare for a voice actor to have steady work from the same people for extended periods of time so the freelance life is one that you need to be ready to embrace. Of course, the truth is that freelancing presents a lot of challenges that you don’t come across in more typical types of work. Being able to balance these challenges along with the specific challenges of working as a VO artist can be tricky but it’s far from impossible. Here are just a few things that you can do to make sure that you’re able to succeed as a freelancer.

Be disciplined

One of the most exciting things that the vast majority of people find when they first enter the world of freelance work is that they suddenly have a whole lot more freedom than they did before. They don’t have a manager breathing down their neck and they have total control over when they work. However, it doesn’t take long to realise that this approach is actually kind of counter-intuitive. Being able to work to deadlines is an essential skill for any voice over artist and if you’re not disciplined with your time then that’s going to be a source of serious stress. The truth is that keeping to a strict work schedule is often the best option if you really want to get the most out of your time as a freelancer.

Make sure you have the right gear

The right gear is essential for any freelancer but it’s especially important for voice over artists. From your microphone to the software that you use to the soundproofing in your recording space, the right gear makes a huge difference and when you’re a freelancer, the need to find it often falls on you. You can’t necessarily rely on clients to provide everything you need. Luckily, at Notable Voices, we can help you find the ideal equipment that you need to make sure that every performance comes out perfectly.

Know how to network

When you work a typical 9-5 job, it’s easy to take for granted that the work will just fall into your lap. That’s certainly not the case as a freelancer. The truth is that you need to be able to get out there and find the work and that will be a whole lot harder if you don’t know how to network. Being able to connect with and talk to people is a serious challenge but it’s one that any self-respective VO artist needs to overcome if they want to be able to reliably get work.

Apply to the different platforms

The voiceover industry is always growing, there are now so many different ways to source the work as a freelancer. Voquent, VOplanet, Voicebunny, Fiverr and The Voice Finder are just a few of these. Get in touch with us for a full list and more details on how to start landing jobs!

There’s no doubt that there are a lot of challenges involved in freelancing and that’s something that any voice over artist is going to have to come to terms with. That being said, there are also plenty of benefits as well. That last thing you should do is to come away from this feeling like the world of freelancing is always hard work and misery. It also gives you a great deal of freedom to pursue the work that you really want and focus on projects that highlight your skills as a voice actor.