Very excited to announce that after all of this time (and some well deserved time off) I am hitting the ground running after resigning with my agent and (drum roll, please…) a new/updated VIDEOsection on my website.
Just click on VIDEO and you can watch my latest clips and demos from past Animation, Promo and Commercial jobs.
My “network” as in “networking”. I started out this year with building my professional network with…well…more professionals! Let’s face it, in order to be successful in this business, we need to network so we can meet contacts in order to get leads and ‘with a little luck’ – employment!
My LinkedInaccount has helped me build a great network as well as sending me articles to help with my networking and marketing skills.. LinkedIn must have checked my pulse from the computer keyboard, because they sent me a “Pulse” email with some great articles to help me along in my career.
Now, the reason for my “quotes” around the phrase “with a little luck” is not because of this past ‘Saint Patrick’s Day’ – it’s because of an article I’d like to share from my LinkedIn Pulse.
In this business, we usually don’t say the “L” word – we say “Break A Leg”. No matter what you call it – ‘luck’, ‘fate’, ‘karma’, ‘blessings’ – here’s a great article I received from LinkedIn Pulse entitled…
BLOG TIME! – I think all voiceover actors want to get on the radar of every casting director in every market. I personally want my voiceover business to grow bicoastal between NYC and LA – and everywhere in-between – so I’m glad I have a home studio for that! (I think a lot of voiceover talent in NYC want to move to LA for the warmer weather – especially after this winter – but that’s a different post for a different day!)
I always ask other people in this business what is the best way to get in contact with the right people who can audition and hire you. I heard one answer on an episode of EAST WEST AUDIO BODY SHOP.
Ms. Kelly Passinault from “The Voicecaster” in Los Angeles was a guest on EWABS. I asked Kelly what is the best/correct way for voiceover talent to contact casting directors in the hopes of getting on their radar for future jobs. Kelly’s answer was that she prefers emails. Also another great thing Kelly touched on was hearing Voice Talent from all around the country. It’s not just limited to where her offices are in southern California. Check out her answer in this EWABS clip right HERE.
So, my question is answered – so I have my email list together of casting directors, producers, creative directors, etc. I have heard back from some of the emails I sent out, but it took a while. PATIENCE is the key!
In January of last year, I went to a VO networking get-together. I made quite a few contacts, got a nice collection of business cards, followed up with all of them a few days later…and I didn’t get called for a booking until September! EIGHT MONTHS LATER!!! It took a while, but it happened!
Yes, ‘Patience Is A Virtue’. But while being patient, that doesn’t mean you sit back and wait for the phone to ring! You have to keep pressing forward and keep busy making contacts. If you don’t keep busy, the mind will wander towards, “why haven’t I heard back from anyone yet?” Don’t think that way! Your thoughts should be towards making the next contact…then the next one…and the next one…and so on…and so on…and so on…
I think we all know that a successful career in this business doesn’t happen overnight! Patience and keep moving forward is the key!
HAPPY SNOW DAY, EVERYONE!!! And today’s snow day is a perfect day to stay in from the cold and read – or – listen to 2 audiobooks in the ALIEN IN MY POCKET series that I was lucky enough to narrate for HarperCollins Audio. Special thanks to the producers at Common Mode and to author Nate Ball for writing these very entertaining children’s books (ages 6-10). Here is the link to check them both out from Audible.com…
Publisher’s Summary: When a four-inch-tall alien crash-lands through Zack McGee’s bedroom window, Zack is sure he’s about to become the first victim in a new War of the Worlds. But when the alien turns out to have weapons that are more ticklish than terrifying, Zack realizes that it’s up to him to protect the alien in his pocket from the world. Like every audiobook in the Alien in My Pocket series, Blast Off! mixes Common Core – aligned science and safe, hands-on experiments with hilarious stories that young listeners will love.
Publisher’s Summary : Ever since Amp crash-landed his spaceship through Zack McGee’s bedroom window, Zack’s life has gotten crazier and his grades have gone from bad to worse. Who has time for homework when there’s an alien invasion to stop? But now Zack’s up against his greatest challenge yet – the school science fair. If Zack doesn’t get an A on his project, he’s going to flunk the class. Luckily, Zack has Amp around to help, but when Zack’s experiment turns out to be too good, he winds up in a whole different kind of trouble. Like every audiobook in the Alien in My Pocket series, The Science UnFair mixes Common Core – aligned science and safe, hands-on experiments with hilarious stories that young listeners will love.
As the year winds down, it’s always a good time to reflect on the year that has past so we can look forward to the new year ahead.
I’m grateful to have had some ‘happy-fun’ times and exciting projects this past year and I owe these happy-fun times to some great people who work within the VO business. I’d like to talk about one of those amazing folks that helped me out this past year.
Ladies and Gentlemen…introducing Mr. Chuck Duran!
Chuck Duran is the head of World Digital Studio in Los Angeles and is one of the most sought-after voiceover demo producers in the business. Chuck’s custom produced demos ROCK! Chuck has years of professional experience and an extensive musical background – (check out his band ROCK SUGAR, too!). Thanks to Chuck’s musical background, he has a great ear to know how to create unique, amazing sounding demos.
At the beginning of this past year, I contacted Chuck asking him if he would produce my new commercial and promo demo reels. Chuck is located in Los Angeles and here I am on the east coast. How is this going to work??? Ah, technology! Thanks to Skype, Chuck and I had our first meeting and told him what I was looking for. Chuck not only listened to what I wanted/needed, but he went above and beyond to figure out who I am and what would be “the best way to showcase my unique sound and style” (his words).
Chuck took the time to create a custom-made plan for me and my sound. The process – I was in my home studio recording while Chuck directed me via Skype from his home studio in Los Angeles. After our session, I sent him Chuck my clean voice tracks. Then, I stepped back and let Chuck work his magic to…yeah…make my demos ROCK! When Chuck sent me my new, finished commercial and promo demo reels, the first time I heard them I thought…”wait, THAT’S ME?!?!? I SOUND LIKE THAT?!?!?” I told Chuck he made me sound “amazing”. Chuck said he didn’t do anything to my voice to make me sound “amazing” – he just knows how to put all the audio pieces together to literally make beautiful sounding music that I always had in me! Chuck even helped me discover a voice I had in me that I never really used in the past…my ‘Drama/Rom-Com’ voice! Yeah, I know! I was as shocked, too! Thanks to Chuck finding that voice in me, I was able to book some work this past year using my ‘Rom-Com’ voice! Go figure! By helping me improve what I could already do while redefining my unique sound with doing things I never knew I could do, Chuck helped me start booking work again!
If you’re looking for the BEST, please check out Chuck’s work on his website…
Here are my voiceover demos produced by Mr. Chuck Duran…
And you have to give props to those in this business who pay it forward. Chuck – along with his wife Stacey J. Aswad – host and produce one of the best and coolest voiceover actor shows on the web, VO BUZZ WEEKLY….
VO BUZZ WEEKLY is THE web show that gets YOU up close and personal with all the top voice actors from your favorite cartoons, animated films, TV promos, movie trailers, video games and commercials as well as voice over agents, directors, marketing gurus and others. Every episode is full of useful voice over tips, inspiring personal stories and insights to help you succeed in the booming Voice Over industry, and in life.
Usually around this time of year, things slow down in the voiceover community because everyone goes on vacation during the holidays. Last year, I didn’t really need a ‘vacation’ – however, this year…I’m looking forward to some ‘quiet time!’
For some reason, the last week before the holidays it got busy here! I just finished recording two audiobooks (titles will be available when the books are released next month) and worked in quite a few auditions in between recordings. From what I was told, clients have some last minute projects that need to get done before the start of the new year. Hey, sounds good to me! I like it when it gets busy!
Wrapping up the work week, I was able to use my “rom-com” movie trailer voice for a sketch written and produced by a New York City comedy sketch team, Latino Dance Troupe. Here’s a link to the video…
So – what to be thankful for this year…? I definitely want to pay it forward to all amazing people in the voiceover community that have helped me over the past year.
Some of the VO people that I’ve known for years are some great ‘Peeps’. Let’s call them ‘VO Peeps’ – because that’s who they are! Check out this great group of folks – THE VO PEEPS – The Global Networking For The Voiceover Community and here’s what they do…
The Peeps are dedicated to providing resources and information about the Voiceover, and related media, industries. Their mission is not only to network with other voice over artists and industry professionals, but to provide continuing education initiatives focused on growing their members’ voiceover skills while enhancing their business model. I’m very proud to now be part of this great group!
Okay – it’s Turkey Time! Everyone have a great Thanksgiving and I’ll talk to you all soon!
Okay, slating my name – and keeping it ‘conversational’.
“This is Steve Tardio…and this is my blog!” WOO-HOO!!! Hey, it’s not everyday I start a blog. So what to talk about? Well, after the past few years of working in the voiceover business, I’m sure many voiceover actors have felt the ‘pinch’ of this economy. Maybe the auditions and bookings have been fewer and further between…? Well, there are some things you can do during the ‘down time’ to make things start happening again (like starting a new blog!). This past year was full of ups and downs. Fortunately, the downs helped me figure out how to turn things around and make them ‘ups’. So I said “Goodbye” to the toxic waste – “Goodbye” to the haters – cut out all the negative and didn’t look back.
As soon as that happened, some GREAT things have been happening! I know, you hear about the ‘power of positive thinking’, and it does work! Also, surrounding yourself with positive people. Fortunately, the voiceover community is full of positive people who always want to help pay it forward to fellow colleagues. When I was wondering what topics I could blog about, I decided I was going to talk about everyone I have met this year in this wonderful business. I have to say I am very grateful to the people I have met and have helped me so far in this career – and I wish I met all of you when I was starting out in this business! I met more colleagues this past year than I have over the past few years. Hey – better late than never!
Who are these people I speak of, you ask? We’re going to get to all of them – trust me! They are all worth my mentioning and you all need to know who they are and how awesome they all are!
That’s all for now! So goodbye for now from my first blog posting! I’ll be back!