Have you ever been pushed and praised at the same time and had fun while doing it? That's exactly what it's like when you work with voice acting Director and Coach, Everett Oliver.
I recently audited a character-read webinar sponsored by Anne Ganguzza through her VO Peeps group that featured Everett, a bicoastal, 25-year entertainment veteran. He has been an animation demo co-producer, a private coach for commercial and animation and also a career building consultant.
In this speed-round-auditions workout, Everett spent the evening encouraging believable, unique reads from each of the participants as he emphasized the importance of being yourself, not overdoing a read, being natural and perhaps most importantly, just having fun!
We sometimes think that characters, in either animation, video games and even at times in commercials, need to be over-the-top. But those characters are not always ones that an audience can relate to. While Everett says to let yourself play and to be comfortable being creative, an actor still has to bring themself to the role to develop the character. To not be thinking about what your voice sounds like, but instead to just let go. Don't think. Just 'do'.
That is great advice for voice actors in the booth, but it also holds true in life. When we get stuck worrying about what others think about us, we take the spontaneity out of the moment. We cease to have fun, our creativity is stifled and people are not drawn in to us. We are too predictable!
People relate best to 'real'. As Everett says "Be confident. Be natural. Be creative. Be true to yourself."
What great words to live by!