Nathan Beatty Voice Over

This site is where you can find more information about Nathan Beatty, an experienced voice over actor based in Charlottesville, Virginia.  Nathan has been a stage actor for over a decade working both on and off stage in over 50 different productions.  Nathan's voice is the neighbor next door.  The friend you trust.  A casual guy.  His voice can also be the young boy hero ready for adventure.  The old jaded mentor.  The silly friend who's sole purpose is to make you laugh. Nathan has worked on various web videos on a number of topics and multiple sales oriented audiobooks. With a wide range of vocal talent Nathan is more than capable to help you with your project.

Filtering by Tag: voice over business

So Many Conferences....

Today I wanted to briefly talk about conferences.  There are a lot over voice over conferences out there.  There are a bunch going on in my neck of the woods and I can only imagine how many are being put on in LA and NYC.  This brings up a lot of questions.  Are they worth it?  If so, which ones?  Am I welcome there?

Frankly the answer to all three of those questions come down to research.  Some conferences are worth it and some are not.  This falls into the same category as "VO Training" falls into.  Since there is a fairly low barrier for entry into this career there are a lot of people out there more than willing to take your money to "show you the ropes."  This leads to people peddling their training skills to anyone who wants to know how to get into voice acting.  At the same time you have folks putting together conferences for the same reason.  So if you are looking at a specific conference that is nearby, find some reviews on it.  Ask some folks who have gone.  Don't be shy.  I have yet to find someone in this business who isn't more than willing to help a fellow actor out.  You want to make sure if you go to a conference you are going to get your money's worth.

(Disclaimer: Personally I have not come across a conference that is a "scam."  But they are out there.)

But it is important to remember that conferences can't get speakers and trainers and sponsors unless that conference gives those speakers, trainers, and sponsors a chance to advertise their products and services.  The key is to make sure the products and services are of good quality.  If the only speaker at a conference you are looking at has a resume the ended in the late 90's and most notably role is the narrator in a Ben Gay commercial you may want to pass.  Like with most things do your research. Ask questions.

The conferences that do seem to have quality speakers and sponsors are probably one of the most important things you can do for your career.  I can't overstate this.  If you go to as many events as you are physically able to and you take a lot of notes you will have a treasure trove of information that would have taken weeks of research on your own.  And do you know what the really great part is?  All that information is a bonus.  The REAL benefit is the networking.  Voice acting becomes so much easier when you have a network of folks who are also voice actors.  We spend a good bit of our time either alone recording, editing, and practicing or marketing and interfacing with our clients for more work.  Conferences give us a chance to get out and meet with folks who are like us, can help us, and are just fun to be around.  

I also want to address the "Am I welcome?" question.  That depends on the conference so research will answer this as well.  VO Atlanta welcomes all skill levels while another conference may be a better fit for seasoned actors.  You need to find that out before you spend the money.  

Finally I want to suggest two conferences that I think are wonderful.  VO Atlanta, mentioned above, is the largest voice over conference in the southeast and may be the biggest east of the Mississippi as of this year.  It is an amazing experience.  Unfortunately I cannot attend this year due to unforeseen circumstances but there is still some time to register.  I encourage you to do so!  

Next is MAVO.  This is the Mid Atlantic Voice Over Conference.  This one is having their third year this November and I am really looking forward to it.  

Let me know if there are any conferences you have attended in the comments below or drop me a line at nate@nathanbeattyvo.com .  I would love to here your conference stories.  Thanks again!

PS: I just had to throw this in here.  On Saturday of VO Atlanta 2015  my wife, daughter, and I were eating dinner in the hotel restaurant near a main thoroughfare.  My daughter was 9 months old at the time and unbelievably adorable (in my biased opinion).  On three separate occasions our dinner was interrupted by various celebrities so they could coo over our baby.  These folks are giants of the industry, the voice of various awards shows, a voice of a favorite character of my youth, etc and they were interrupting OUR dinner.  I was a little floored by that.  In my visions I imagined I would be the stuttering fanboy interrupting their dinner blubbering like a fool.  My only regret was I did not get photos of them with my daughter.  O well....   

   

Biting Off More Than You Can Chew...

One of the most difficult things to do is walk away from a gig.  That is why it is very important to figure out if you have the time to complete the project BEFORE you audition.

Time is finite.  Just because you really want to work on a project doesn't mean that you will magically have enough time to do it if you already have other commitments.  This is something I always remember when I'm marketing and looking for work.  "This job looks fun, but it also looks involved.  Do I have enough time to work on this on the chance I get the gig?"  

I once read that when you are looking over an audition notice it is your chance to "audition" the job.  Obviously you are looking at whether you fit the part, is it a style you can produce, does it pay a decent rate, etc.  But you also should be looking at your workload and making sure it works with your schedule.  You do not want to find yourself having to deliver a job late or worse, have to walk away.    

Drop me a line at nate@nathanbeattyvo.com if you have any questions.  Thanks again!

Paying to Play

As any voice over artist who has done anything on the internet can tell you, "Pay to Play" sites are numerous.  You have the most obvious examples, Voices.com and Voice123.  There are others, such as Bodalgo.com.  Then there are sites like Voicebunny.com (from the makers of Voice123) which isn't "pay to play" but chooses to collect their fees on the back end using a very opaque system.  Finally there are pockets of voice over artists peddling their talent on sites such as Fiverr and the like.  (Fiverr in particular seems to be a very divisive subject in the voice over world.)

An argument is often made that all of these sites "cheapen" the cost of what we do as voice over talent.  Others argue that some of these sites, or category of sites, are OK and the "future of the business" but other sites are guilty of driving down cost and quality.  On the other side of the spectrum are those that feel this is the natural evolution of the business.  

Frankly I fall somewhere in between.  I feel that the business is changing.  I feel there will always be a stark division between the LA and New York talent, and the rest of us.  I feel it's entirely possible that someday all voice actors will work from their home without having to go to a studio.  Not only possible but probable.  Especially with this new VR technology coming out soon.  You laugh, but some day it will be a matter of putting on a special visor in your home booth and you will be seeing all the other actors, or at least the director, sitting across from you chatting about the role you are about to read.  You are in Toledo and the director is in West Hollywood in his apartment.  It is only a matter of time.

What isn't going to change for this "level" of voice over is the way you get the gig.  Studios and production companies will not give up the agent system easily.  Too much money is on the line to put your faith into a random VO artist you found on Voices.com.  Yes, there will always be "those" stories.  Where a guy with a voice like melted butter is recorded on his friends YouTube video and all of sudden he's the next Nolan North.  But that is very rare.  

But for the rest of us, outside of the agent system, we have to make it in the world today outside of that system.  The internet has a been a blessing and a curse in this regard.  We have access to an almost infinite number of potential clients.  But so does everyone else.  I feel the types of sites I mentioned above are the natural evolution of the business.  What works will continue to work and what doesn't will fall by the wayside.

I would be interested in your thoughts on the matter, especially if you are a VO artist yourself.  Drop me a line at nate@nathanbeattyvo.com if you have any questions.  Thanks again!