2.0 Two_Point_Oh

Yes, I know it’s been a while.  Trust me, I’ve been plenty busy with voice over and keeping America safe with my Air Force guard responsibilities.  No I haven’t been lazing about!  I’ve been expanding my performances into theatre.

As of late, I’ve be an active member with the Lompoc Civic Theatre.  This year, I have been given the most excellent oppourtunity to be casted in the production “2.0 Two_Point_Oh” written by Jeffrey Jackson.  This has been an amazing experience, which I have enjoyed greatly.  It’s so rewarding to work with a group of people who have a common goal in mind, and push themselves to be their very best in an effort to bring a project to fruition.

Elliot Leeds is dead—or is he?
A pioneering software mogul, Leeds makes headlines one last time when his private jet plunges into the Pacific. Months later, his grief-paralyzed widow Melanie discovers Elliot’s greatest creation: a virtual-reality simulation of himself that he masterminded before his demise. Programmed with advanced artificial intelligence, thousands of hours of his recorded thoughts and speech, and a digital re-creation of his face and body, “Elliot 2.0” is a talking, thinking, virtual soul. And though merely an image on the video screens of their wired, high-tech mansion, it—he—can answer questions, hold conversations, share memories, and perhaps even grow in intelligence and capacity. The question is… is he alive?

Directed by Larry McLellan.  Come out to Lompoc, wine and dine before the show at the numerous wineries in town, and “wind” your night down with Lompoc Civic Theatre as it presents:  “Jeffrey Jackson’s: 2.0 Two_Point_Oh”.

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Your Voice Over Business: got a Plan?

I took a class with this wonderful woman and just love her work. This article is great regardless if your a voice talent or an entrepenur in another field.

Life on the Voiceover List

Imagine you want to lose, say, five pounds. So you make a plan (lower-case p). You decide to give up wine,  to eat fewer carbs, or count points, whatever….yet it somehow doesn’t happen. Things get in the way. You open the fridge and can’t make a decision, so you just grab the Frosted Flakes and milk as usual. And, before you know it, it’s back to deciding to put it all off until tomorrow, or next Monday.

What went wrong?

You had a plan, but not a Plan (with a capital P).

Now imagine a Plan.

You take ten minutes on Sunday to list 7 breakfasts, lunches and dinners you

Hard to get the job done without Scaffolding Hard to get the job done without Scaffolding

love that fit your plan(repeats are fine, too – hey, it’s life), and a few snack ideas.  And, right then, you choose 1 from each list to pencil in for Monday –…

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Schools Out: Summertime Interruption . . . or Opportunity?

Summertime is here, and you know what that means. The kids are out of school, more camping excursions are undertaken, the BBQ is lit and ready to go, day trips are planned, and a whole lot more interruptions are present to stop any work at home.

If you have kids like mine, then you know they live in this bizarro world where they do everything the opposite of what you ask. So it’s imperative to avoid statements such as . . .

  1. Keep it down!
  2. Can you turn the TV down?
  3. Can you play outside?
  4. Why can’t you guys play nicely?
  5. I don’t think the neighbors appreciate that.

Keep in mind that’s just a short list; I can keep going. As a voiceover talent though, my biggest bane is noise outside the recording studio. And like most voiceover talent, my studio is a self-constructed hodge-podge of audio dampening foam, loose military uniforms and an assortment of other clothing/blankets lining my space to offer some noise dampening. Personally, a monument of pride. However, I’m convinced I could set up my studio in a cold war missile silo buried hundreds of feet beneath rubble, and my kids will still find a way to let their voice be heard.

Yes, it can be irritating, but I’m actually okay with that.

Hear me out before you call me crazy.

Summertime can be a great time to step outside that voice booth, and focus on other important voiceover activities that may be neglected.

Yup, I’m talking about marketing and other administrative excitement!

  1. In between those squeals and screams, make those cold calls.  It’s not as bad as it sounds, and can actually be fun.  Just like auditioning, you get better the more you do it.  Call those people damn-nab-it!
  2. If you have to audition, strategize when you do it.  Take advantage of those periods your kids actually do go outside and finish that audition, instead of catching up on Marvels Agents of Shield *guilty as charged*. If that means auditioning in the early hours or late at night, then so be it.  If that audition matters that much to you, you’ll find a way.
  3. Update your website and any other voice casting services you’re affiliated with.  Rates change and demos get updated.  Keep up with that.

Since it is summertime, take the initiative to have fun!

One thing I do that my kids enjoy is I try to involve them with what I’m doing. Set aside some time and show them what you do. Have them record something silly. Involve them in the entire process to include any post production. For the longest time my kids thought the closest was the dad lair that was off limits, and were completely detached from what I actually did. Putting them in the hot seat and showing them their voice wave, they have a little bit of an understanding, and appreciation of what I do.

Most importantly, take care of yourself. Whether its physical fitness, mental relaxation, or spiritual restoration, you’ll notice a general improvement in your quality of life, which directly impacts your ability to cope with those stresses that might affect your ability to perform voiceover.

Have a great summer folks!

Playback Recording Studio

Met an awesome person that works at Playback, Ann. She taught my foster parenting class and helped with certification. You go Ann!

Yesterday I had the opportunity to take a tour of Playback Recording Studio in Santa Barbara, California.

At the front door I was promptly met by Playback audio technician Daniel.  From the moment I walked in I was stunned.  The arrangement of decor, the low, warm lighting, and architecture of the facility itself lent credit to the creative minds of the people that designed and work in the recording studio.  The mirrored echo chamber was a beautiful sight to behold and gave the appearance of a portal that leads and compels you to find out whats at the other end.  Stepping through the other end of the chamber accessed the live room, which was a tremendous room begging to be filled with the sound of music.  The isolation booth, which is where part of the magic happens for voice over, was located at the far end of the live room, and was…

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Playback Recording Studio

Yesterday I had the opportunity to take a tour of Playback Recording Studio in Santa Barbara, California.

At the front door I was promptly met by Playback audio technician Daniel.  From the moment I walked in I was stunned.  The arrangement of decor, the low, warm lighting, and architecture of the facility itself lent credit to the creative minds of the people that designed and work in the recording studio.  The mirrored echo chamber was a beautiful sight to behold and gave the appearance of a portal that leads and compels you to find out whats at the other end.  Stepping through the other end of the chamber accessed the live room, which was a tremendous room begging to be filled with the sound of music.  The isolation booth, which is where part of the magic happens for voice over, was located at the far end of the live room, and was an impressive space.

The iso booth was comfortable, which offered more than enough range of motion for the voice talent to interact with their script and stay on mic.  No awkward restraints from equipment or walls.  From the iso booth was a window which gave a glimpse into the control board from which the sound engineer operates.

The control board looked like it came out of a science fiction novel (in a good way).  The immensity was almost a bit overwhelming, with different systems modulating different aspects of sound.  I felt if my tour guide sat down and manipulated the console we would drift off into warp at any given moment, and see star lanes zip by on the big screen stationed in front of the console.  I felt grounded to reality when I noticed cartoon memorabilia decorating the room, and another technician taking care of the area with a handled broom, picking up debris meticulously off the floor.

With such an impressive studio, its no wonder they have such a prestigious clientele; Katy Perry, The Mad Caddies, voice over talent for EA Sports, Walgreens, and GEICO, and many more!

As impressive as the studio was, nothing compares to the professionalism of the staff I met.  A big thank you to Daniel, who took the time out of his day to give me the tour, explain the rooms and equipment, and answer my questions.  Also, thank you to Lisa and Cameron, both who were a pleasure to meet.  I look forward to working in the future with this group of professionals.

Agent representation . . .

When I first ventured into voice over, marketing was not a topic on my radar. Of course I knew about the importance of it, but never took it seriously till after my demo production.

I’ve spent countless hours since that production and started the marketing process; calling ad agencies, media production houses, radio stations, building a website, creating a brand and contacting talent agencies.

I’m happy to say, that hard work has payed off. I’m honored to be part of such a great group of people at Central Coast Talent Agency. Melanie was great to talk to, and really set me at ease with her values and expectations. Thank you CCTA for helping me make a dream come true, in voice over and acting!