I’m going to post the rest of my thoughts about this year’s Summit pretty soon. I just need to pull a few more thoughts together, plus there’s some audio I want you to be able to hear. I think you’ll find the wait was worthwhile.
Meanwhile, a few thoughts today sparked by a thread on the Voiceover Bulletin Board, by the inimitable Philip Banks. And no, Mr. Banks doesn’t need me to carry his water. But, I believe in giving credit where credit is due.
Every day, and I use those words not as a figure of speech, but as literal truth, every day I discover how little I know. Not just about voiceover, of course; but as that’s the subject of this blog, I’ll confine my comments here to that subject.
For example, last week at the Summit two truths were pointed out to me in a matter of a few seconds. The first truth is that I actually am pretty good. The second and more important truth is that because I’ve reached a certain level of proficiency, it’s all too easy for me to coast on what I’ve learned. Right after I heard those two truths, I was shown just how much better I could be if I just push myself past the coasting to something closer to genuine excellence.
Now, in that case, I was learning from Dan O’Day, someone far more experienced and advanced than I am. But, people with much less experience have also recently taught me valuable lessons. Because the learning isn’t only about acting or voice techniques. It’s also about the truth that being a voiceover artist is a business. And you can’t coast in that area either.
You can see an excellent example of what I mean in an earlier post on this blog, about Mary C. McKitrick. Mary has been doing voiceovers for a much shorter time than I have, but her approach to the business side of things is much more advanced than mine. Read her blog. You’ll see what I mean.
And to underscore that lesson, if you’ve read my comments below about the first day of the Summit this year, you’ll see than one of the key points Harlan Hogan made in his session was about this same subject: we have to treat this as a business, because that’s what it is.
Were I to take the time to list all of the similar lessons I’ve learned from just the past year, this post would grow too long to fit on a single page. But, at the end of the day the real question for me and for you is: what are you going to do about it?