Since the rejection from VoiceBunny a while ago, I have upgraded almost everything in my studio. I have:
- Built a Cone of Silence and padded the walls (appropriate for at least two distinct purposes)
- Upgraded my mic and cords
- Added a Simply Sound SS-1 pre-amp
- Changed computers, OSes, and DAWs
With all that, and some added experience in production processes, I thought it was a good time to retry the audition process for VoiceBunny. You may remember, the information I got back from my first effort cited the primary problem as boxiness, and some subsequent reviews mentioned some mouth noise that should be edited out. The padded walls in the Cone were to address the boxiness, and better post-production should help me take care of the mouth noise.
When Mr. Bunny rejects you, the subsequent visits to his site tell you that you can request another opportunity to become a Bunny talent. I did this several weeks ago and never heard anything – the resubmission page says there will be a delay between your request and their response while they evaluate your progress since the last try, but no specifics are given. I got impatient and resubmitted again, and finally this past week I got the nod in an email that said to get ready to audition.
The process was the same the second time around. Well, not on my side because I knew to expect the “job offer” in hours, not minutes, and that I would have hours, not minutes, to complete it. It was much less nerve wracking the second time through – until I started recording! Early one morning the message came through with an offer, I accepted the job, and shortly after the script and directions came through with a time limit of 4.5 hours. The script was less than a minute long, and the directions a bit confusing, using both “epic” and “natural voice” in the same notes.
If you Google (or I should say when you Duck-Duck-Go, because that is my default search engine now just because I felt Google was getting too much info four our own good) the term “epic” in conjunction with Voice over Work, you will see the connotation is the big action movie trailer voice. And if you research that just a little, you will find many people say to get that epic sound, you should work your mic closer and let the mic do the work. Now, I like working the mic close, because sometimes it gives me the Barry White thing, so I had no problem going for epic here.
I recorded the script four times with different phrasing’s and hitting different words for effect, then spent an hour editing. I will detail this process in another post shortly, just to keep the minutiae separate from the story. But when I was done, I felt I had the best 40 seconds of narration I have done.
Mr. Bunny – disagrees. The primary problem? Proximity Effect. Don’t bother Duck-Duck-Go for that one; it means I was too close to the mic. Really. Now, I don’t want to go on a rant here, but… Okay, no Dennis Miller because you know by now where I would go with all that. There also was a tiny endnote that cited some hiss in the chain somewhere, and I will just admit that I cannot hear that hiss. My ears, I guess, have just heard too much music over the years to still be that sensitive.
Well, there it is. Am I done with Mr. Bunny? For this week, yes. After that, I will just see it as the next challenge and try again when my self-concept has recovered a little bit. Which isn’t likely to happen to soon, because I have hit a real dry spell with book offers in the last few weeks on ACX. And I haven’t mentioned much about Voices.com, because I am having almost zero success there no matter how many auditions I submit. I am blaming some of that on the fact that I have not uploaded a full complement of Demos, because my demos are primarily audiobook style, and Voices.com has very little of that going on, so there is something for me to work on in the next week or more.
One last note is a recommendation for you to listen to the VO School podcast on eLearning if you have an interest in long-form narration. You can find the podcast at https://soundcloud.com/voschool/episode-32-e-learning-and-co