It has been a very busy few weeks for me, which I am extremely thankful for. When you work freelance, you never know from day to day what type of projects may land in your lap. In just this last week, I voiced a large e-learning project, an children's audiobook project, several radio commercials...and even managed a couple of on camera jobs.
I don't want to bore you with my day to day happenings (like in my previous blog- hah!), but I thought I would share a few of the items I have found that make my life as a voice actor much easier.
No, I'm not talking mics and pre-amps, we all know how important those items are. I'm speaking of the non-essentials we all have lying around our office that suddenly become oh so essential. Here they are, in no particular order...
1. My calculator. Rarely am I found more than a few feet away from one of my calculators. I love those little solar powered tools! Mine is regularly used to help with invoice totals, tax withholdings, etc. It also came in quite handy recently when quoting for that e-learning job!
2. My stopwatch. I have 2- and they are used all the time. In the U.S., radio commercials are typically :30 or :60 long...which means our voice over needs to be no longer than 28.5 or 58.5. My inner clock is never that precise, that is why a good timer is a major necessity. Plus, if you are ever stressed out and need to check your heart rate...bingo!
3. My scanner. Having discovered some papers I forgot to give to my CPA, and having no time for a trip uptown- that scanner came in mighty handy! It's also great for scanning in checks and pay stubs to keep for your records.
4. Dictionary.com. The e-learning project contained about 700 medical terms I had never heard of. Thank goodness for pronunciation guides!
5. 100% Whole Grain Fig Newtons. Need I say more?
6. Pilates: 10 Minute Solution. My favorite work out DVD of all time, it contains (among others) a 10 minute set for relaxation and flexibility. I have found no better (or shorter) way to relieve stress and open your chest to help you breathe better.
I'm sure, given time, I can come up with a very long list of essentials for voice over. I'd be interested to hear what non-studio equipment items you find you can't live without!