As a child, you probably loved watching cartoons. And in your teen years, you may have tried copying the voice of commercials you saw on TV and radio. If these things sound familiar, you may want to consider working as a voice over in cartoons.
With the animation industry booming, so does the voice over industry. After all, voice overs are a vital part of cartoons. Voice over in cartoons is simply voice acting. Your job is to be an actor who uses your voice to give life to a character.
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This post has been updated in October 2021.
Voice Over in Cartoons – The Job of the Century
Compared to other actors that use their entire body to act, your voice is your only selling tool. Sounds easy, right? But make no mistake – being a voice actor is tough. Your job as an actor to voice over in cartoons involves professional training and hours of practice to pull it off successfully.
Working as a voice over in cartoons is the same as any job in which you invest your time and effort to perfect your technique. It takes effort to deliver a voice acting that embodies the character you portray.
There are many steps you need to accomplish before working as a voice over in cartoons.
How Does Voice Over in Cartoons Work?
Voice actors lend their voice for animated TV, movies, audiobooks, commercials, documentaries, video games, as well as other media. You use only your voice to give life to a character, narrate a story, or explain a concept.
Being an actor for a voice over in cartoons does not mean you can’t do screen acting. The same thing applies to screen actors – it doesn’t mean they can’t cross over to become a voice actor too. However, there are some essential differences between these two acting jobs.
The training of a voice actor is primarily different from a screen actor. Professional voice actors today go train to hone their voices. There are also tools and equipment necessary for voice actors that screen actors don’t use.
Specializing in voice overs doesn’t mean you only have to know one thing. In fact, you must expose yourself to different forms of voice acting to get better at it. Typically, a voice actor begins their voice acting career through a series of steps.
Taking voice over classes
By going through proper training, you can learn to use your voice properly as an instrument for acting. Voice over acting in cartoons uses different arts and techniques. You can learn these skills during your specialized training.
Experiment and practice
Once you learn important techniques, you must hone your skills. You need to develop what makes you unique as an actor to voice over in cartoons. This step takes lots of practice and experimentation. The idea is to be consistent when voicing over a character.
Consistency is crucial since when you voice over in cartoons, you must perform the same voice every time. Doing this, you can also come up with different voices. You can have different cartoons voices to use and market yourself.
The use of a voice over coach can help you perfect your voice and develop consistency.
Record a Demo
If you feel ready, the next step is to record a demo. You should showcase your different cartoon voices. Your demo is your ticket to being cast, so investing in a professional studio recording can be an excellent idea.
Look for Job Postings
Next, time to look for job postings. If you find a gig you like, send your demo to the casting director.
Be Patient and Prepare for Rejection
After sending your demo, you must be patient and wait to hear news from the casting director. If they liked you and want to hire you, they will contact you. Don’t try to call them because they’re likely busy and would find your call troublesome.
Submit Your Demo to an Agency
You can look for acting gigs independently, but it might help to join an agency. If an agency sees your potential, they can find work for you in exchange for a commission.
This system is how many voice over in cartoons get done.
Actor for Voice Over in Cartoons – The Scope of the Job
When you hear ‘voice over in cartoons,’ you probably think of big animation studios like Warner Bros Animation or Walt Disney Animation Studios. These are animation studios mostly dealing in cartoons.
Today, however, voice acting transcends to more than just cartoons. The industry is shifting to video games, character commercials, direct-to-DVD features, toys, and more.
So you may wonder, “what kind of projects can you do a voice over in cartoons?”
The obvious project you can do as a voice over in cartoons is animated TV. Think about the cartoons you used to watch on Cartoon Network and Nickelodeon. Who do you think voices your favorite characters?
Behind every one of those lovable cartoon characters is a voice actor. Besides children’s animation, you will find many animated adult cartoons today in need of voice actors.
Major animated movies also tap talents for voice over in cartoons to bring your favorite characters to life. Films like Moana, Frozen, and Finding Dory are examples of successful films that use voice over talent.
Movies also feature actors that cross over to voice over work. Dwayne Johnson voiced Maui in Moana. Idina Menzel voiced Elsa in Frozen. And Ellen DeGeneres voiced Dory. In some cases, the actor does both the voice over and the animated action as CGI characters.
Video games are also an industry experiencing incredible growth. Some people are just as excited to hear that a new video game is being released as with the biggest movies. Similarly, the voice actors behind those games are just as popular.
Voice actors in video games have a lot of competition. But that only further emphasizes how big the career of a voice acting can someday become.
Commercials are another type of project that uses voice overs. Many commercials only narration. So voice overs are extremely important.
The actor voices over the product or service shown in the commercial. This way, producers can provide additional information to viewers and effectively get their message across.
You have access to an incredible source of entertainment and information through listening to audiobooks. Over the years, audiobooks have grown thanks to Audible and similar outlets. Most of the time, a professional voice actor reads the book.
People are getting more into documentaries these days. With so many documentary films and TV shows available today, you must already have your favorite narrator. That narrator is a voice actor too, lending their voice to make your show more entertaining.
One aspect of documentaries that make some people avoid it is the narration style. A specific type of voice actor is necessary. Only a professional voice actor with fantastic pronunciation and dramatic prowess can pull this off.
How to Hone Your Skills as a Cartoon Voice Over Actor
You are about to take on a new adventure now that you’ve decided to try being a voice actor. This is not an easy job where you will need to invest lots of your time, effort, and money. On that note, you must make sure if this is really what you want.
Developing your skills is the key to a successful voice over in cartoons, animated films, video games, and many other fields. You need to develop your craft if you want success as a voice actor.
Find your niche
Start by finding the niche that you truly enjoy as a voice actor. Of course, this step doesn’t mean you should only know how to do one thing. While looking for a specific niche, don’t limit yourself in trying other types of voice over work. You may end up excelling in a field you wouldn’t have guessed is a perfect match for your talents.
Study Your Craft
Follow people who are successful in your field. And don’t forget to follow the right role models in cartoon voice overs. You can surely gain some insights and tips by learning from experienced and successful voice over talents. This process will also help you learn how to deal with the challenges in this career.
Collect Different Voices
Collect different voices in your head. Make sure you have a variety of voices you can use whenever required. Practice speaking in a wide range of voices. Having a repertoire like this will surely boost your ability to give an amazing voice over in cartoons.
In acting through the use of your voice, you need creativity. Your imagination is what allows you to choose the right voice suitable for a given character. Do this by studying the character and what makes them unique. Practice putting yourself into their shoes and get into character.
Learn important terms
Study the industry jargon you will encounter. This tip will help your career go smoothly when it comes to communicating with others in your field. This way, you will gain the confidence you need when you look for gigs. And it will save you time when you need to understand industry jargon to get a job done.
Voice Over in Cartoons Can Be a Dream Job
Giving a voice over in cartoons is one of the most interesting professions today. It is perfect for people who don’t like to be seen on camera but want to act.
Because it is such a rewarding career, it is extremely competitive. But with hard work and perseverance, you can find success in this growing industry.
Find the perfect voice for your cartoons today with Bunny Studio!