A Voice Over Demo compilation is the best way to showcase your abilities as a Voice Over Artist to the world…but at what stage should you create one?
Of course there’s actually nothing stopping you from recording your voice at any time and sharing it with others and it’s a great way to get feedback as you progress on your voice over journey, however, a well curated collection of your best voice over work is how you will ultimately land some work.
I know, I still haven’t answered the original question, but I’m working up to it as there are a few things to consider first.
Most importantly your Voice Over Demo needs to be a reflection of your abilities, not the ability of the producer/ sound engineer to make you sound amazing. It’s important that I say that as there are some studios that offer demo creation services where they will literally take someone with little or no experience and coach them through a handful of scripts, then with plenty of skilful editing and post production techniques make them sound simply amazing.
So what’s wrong with that? Well, it will quickly become apparent the first time someone hires you to do a voice over for them and you’re not able to perform as well as your demo suggests you can. This ‘short cut’ then actually finds you with a demo that’s not really much use as it doesn’t reflect your actual ability as a voice over artist. The studio that made it for you won’t care because, well frankly all they wanted was your money.
Ok, I’ll finally answer the original question – but I’ll have to ask YOU more questions to get the answer.
Try this for a check list.
- Are you comfortable and confident in the studio with others watching?
- Do you have a good understanding of Microphone, breathing and script marking techniques?
- Can you read a short script (e.g 30 seconds) from start to finish without tripping over your words on every take?
- Are you able to take direction and adjust your read to deliver the required result?
- Do you already have some recordings of your voice over work?
If you’re answering YES to those questions I would suggest that YES, you’re ready to get a demo together.
So what exactly goes into a demo?
For experienced voice over artists that are booking regular jobs the demo is a well crafted compilation of recent great work performed.
For example here’s my (Andy) current compilation.
Some voice over artists have some great examples of their work, but perhaps not enough for a full demo that contains a variety of styles. In this case they would simply record some new material to help fill in the gaps.
That’s exactly what I did this week with Kat – a Perth-based voice over artist who came to Melbourne to attend the ‘Voice Over for Video Games’ workshop.
She wanted to freshen up her current demo with some new material so came in to see how I could help. After listening to her current demo I selected some scripts that I felt would help ad some variety to her body of work and we recorded and produced them. Here’s what Kat walked away with.
Ok, she didn’t actually walk out of the studio with demo in hand. Post production does take some time, so it was a few days later.