In a small coastal community south or Portland, Oregon, far away from the flashing lights of Hollywood’s studios and the bright lights of Times square, a local resident is busy talking to himself in a small dark room; and he’s making some good money doing it.
Dave DeAndrea from North Bend is part of a wave of voice talent, working from home studios around America lending their voice to some of the world’s biggest brands.
Voice talent or voice actors as the they prefer to be called, do a great job of subtly blending into the background, but are all around us every day. Most people don’t give a second thought to the voice that announces the promos for tonight’s television line-up, or the voice that constantly reminds us what station we are listening to.
It’s a small industry, but a very lucrative one if you can get the break.
Moments before lunch DeAndrea has already recorded an international Toyota TV commercial spot, five auditions for other jobs, and a few answering machine messages. He also managed to take a walk with his wife and help his 4 kids get ready for the day.
DeAndrea moved from radio at the start of 2012 to focus on a full-time voiceover career, one that traditionally required the physical relocation of those wanting to break into the industry to big cities like Los Angeles, Chicago and New York. But thanks to technology voice talent can now work from virtually anywhere with an internet connection.
“Technology continues to be a true friend of the voice over industry. As tech advances, equipment becomes more affordable and talent becomes more accessible. I think we’ll be seeing some great improvements in the ease and quality of mobile recording in the months and years to come.” DeAndrea says sitting in his newly fitted out studio.
Working from home and being able to be his own boss has had a positive impact on his life. “I love being able to set my own schedule. It’s not just a benefit when it comes to spending time with my family, but it also allows me to be flexible for my clients.” He added.
Many of his recent voice over bookings, including the international Toyota commercial have come from a voice over website that connects clients looking for professional voice actors. The Voice Realm uses technology that assists the client by suggesting voices that would match their needs, right through to scheduling the recording session, handling the transaction and ensuring the voice talent is paid correctly.
The ad agency that hired DeAndrea for the Toyota commercial then went on to book him for a Winter X-Games spot.
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Sites like The Voice Realm send casting notices to their inbox where clients can hire a voice over talent in just a matter of clicks. DeAndrea understands which jobs are a waste of his time and which ones are worth his while.
“The longer I do voice overs, the more I understand what kinds of jobs are the best match for my voice and style. I’m able to get a better return on my investment of time by only auditioning for jobs that fit within that window.”
The site receives around fifty voice over jobs applications every week, but may only accept a few of those.
For now, DeAndrea’s new career and flexible working hours are giving him reason to smile, and it looks like there’s no sign of slowing down anytime soon.
As he finishes up his homemade sandwich, his computer just quietly made a ‘ding’ sound to indicate a new email – and sure enough his golden tonsils have just been hired again.
www.TheVoiceRealm.com For interviews: firstname.lastname@example.org