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Further pursuits of happiness

have a lot of bumps and holes in them. I graduated from Radio Broadcasting this past April and was very proud and happy with myself. I finally had a college diploma. Though I didn’t see myself working at a radio station…I wasn’t a fan talking to people I didn’t know or researching stuff that didn’t interest me…yeah kinda self absorbed and silly, and something I’m regretting right now as I listen to my former classmates have fun on the air at local stations.
Wondering where I ended up after graduation? I ended up working full time hours with a part time status at Wal-mart…which I have worked at for 10 years now as a part-timer.
My first time in college I went into animation and failed after the first semester. So when I graduated from Radio all of my Animation friends were graduating from Animation. I felt that I needed to go back and finish…to prove to myself that I could graduate from animation.
So I’m in first year animation again and struggling with it…again. You may think it’s an easy course because all we do is draw all day, but it’s much more than that. The good part is that I’m not failing and I’ve learned a lot more this time around…but I find myself struggling with the final for first semester…again. I just can’t get that flour sack right. So we will see if I pass this time.

Introduction to Tooned In!

Ottawa International Animation Festival

If you were lucky enough to get to the Animation festival than you got to see all the great animation being screen there. If you are interested in voice acting you also might have bee lucky enough to attend Stevie Vallance’s voice over workshop. She shared a few different ways she coaches people in voice acting for animation. She got a few volunteers to get behind the mic and try their voice acting skills by not thinking too much, leaving their inner adult at the door, and lots and lots of laughter. I got a chance to interview her for my current affairs class and The Algonquin Show which airs on CKDJ 107.9 every morning at 9. She is a very energetic person with a lot of great information that she shares with voice acting fans, people in the industry, and those trying to break into the industry.

I will re-post my segment from the Algonquin Show for anyone that wants to take a listen. It is about 5min long and includes part of an interview I got with Dave Cooper.

In my experience attending Stevie’s short workshops at the animation festival have been well worth it. They share a lot if information on voice acting for animation but it makes you wanting more. If you are truly serious about becoming a voice actor you should take a full voice over workshop, some improv or dramatic arts classes, or a even better a full course in acting for television. Radio Broadcasting has helped me with some of my behind the mic preformance, including breathing, speaking clearly, and telling a story. This is good for getting into commercial voice overs but for animation voice overs you really need to learn how to act because as Stevie says only 10% is voice the other 90% is getting into the character.

 

If you live in Canada and are interested in taking Stevie’s workshop you can check it out on her site http://toonedin.ca She does workshops in different cities including Vancouver, Toronto, New York, and Ottawa though be quick because space is limited and she may not be doing workshops for much longer. I am planning on attending one of her workshops in the future though be warned the fees aren’t cheap at around $300 for a basic one day workshop and the price goes up from there…but before you complain about the price remember Stevie has to account for travel costs, hotel costs, and the cost of booking a studio for the day and her fee helps out with all of this. Once I attend one of her workshops I will let everyone know how good it is and weather it is worth taking or not. Though considering she is one of the only people in Canada that does voice coaching it is more convienient than catching a flight to the United States.

Becoming a Voice Actor

Can be really hard. In my travels around the internet and at various conventions I have found a multitude of people who want to become animation voice over actors, specifically for anime (Japanese Animation). There is a huge fan base behind the anime world and so many of them want to follow in their favorite voice actors footsteps and have a chance at becoming a character they love. I am no acception to this. Though how many people actually work hard enough to make this dream a reality? I’m guessing not very many. So many voice over studios or even industry professionals have been milking the teaching market in voice acting because it has become more popular and like a sheep I find myself following the crowed yet again. My love of voice acting stems from a love of creativity and the arts. It is another way for me to express myself. Two things seem to be baring my path to voice acting though, a lack of training and a lack of experience. Both of them currently very hard to get because training to be a voice actor takes a lot of cash and time. Most training sessions are around $300 and up for a five or so hour session…yes ONE session. This is normally done in small groups of about 12 people so the teacher is getting about $3K a day that is like making $700 an hour! Sounds nice doesn’t it? Though the shelling out of the money can be very painful, and it is a risk to take for a business that is so over-populated and competitive. Or well I could go back to school for another three year in the dramatic arts program and toss down about the same amount of cash.

So if I had the money to drop on lessons I would take them. In the mean time I am scouring the internet and the local chapters for anything that I can find that is student priced to help me on my journey. There isn’t really all that much out there that hasn’t been shared before and books aren’t readily available at the book store to look through and decide if you want to buy them, they need to be special ordered. Which means they need to be paid for in advance. Not helpful when working with such a small budget, so the internet and some of its free information will have to do for now.

Moving on to dilemma number two, lack of experience. This one can be even harder to overcome because people are less inclined to take someone with little to no experience…which means I may have to plead, beg, and do some free work to get that experience that I need to move up a step on the ever-increasing ladder of voice acting. Something else that always helps is having contacts in the industry. People that can give you pointers and introduce you to other people in the industry. My problem so far? Other than the lack of good people skills I am seen as merely a fan when I meet people in the voice acting industry. Why? Because I meet them at conventions and the first times are always in autograph lines. I feel that even though I may not act like a raving fan girl they assume that I am one because I waited for three hours in a line waiting to meet them while wearing some possibly ridiculous costume of a character from an animated series. True story. So because first impressions are so important I have been branded fan girl to most if not all the voice actors I have met.

On top of that I find the industry to be very hush hush and tight knit like radio. I also figured out that even though some voice actors started in radio most of them find DJ’s irritating…though it might just be the club and wedding variety not the radio ones. I will have to ask someone when I get a chance.

I will continue my search on voice acting information, the industry, and how to become a part of it…and because I am such a generous person I will share all of my findings and insights with you.

My Personal Brand

Who am I? Nicole Scott…

I have lots of ideas but can never seem to execute them…until now.

What do I care about? voice acting, creativity, animation.

What will my future employer care about?

What words do people use to describe me?

What words do I want people to use?

How do I re-enforce through action?

Blogging

All week I have been trying to figure out what to use this blog for. I have many different blogs floating all over cyber space including my first blog at livejournal and two others made for writing and other blogging. I also have two blogs with blogger. One is a personal blog and one is a school blog. Even though deviant art doesn’t really count as a blog there is a journal feature there so I also rant about different things on that site.

I was thinking about integrating word press with my radio website http://iamnicolescott.com which might help keep everything organized and easier to post any updates I may have in the future. That is where I also have my resume and some audio clips of different things I have worked on for class, CKDJ, and AIR.

The other thing I was thinking of doing with this blog is perhaps a place to show all of my voice work since I aspire to become an animation voice actor. Or this could also be for the internet radio station I am dreaming up and could document all the steps taken throughout the process.

Over all there is one thing I don’t want to happen to this blog and that is forget about it as it roams neglected throughout the vastness that is the internet.