VAMFR 024 | Maintaining Good Psychological Health as a Voice Actor, Part 1

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VAMFR 024 | Maintaining Good Psychological Health as a Voice Actor, Part 1

Welcome to episode 24 of the Voice Acting Mastery: Field Report podcast!

You can listen to the podcast using the player above, or download the mp3 using the link at the bottom of this blog post. The podcast is also available via the iTunes Store online. Just follow this link to view the podcast in iTunes:

http://www.vamfieldreport.com/podcast

Welcome to the first part of a special report on maintaining good psychological health as a voice actor by our special correspondent, Maureen Price!

Maureen has been eager to dive into this topic ever since she joined the Field Report and she’s very excited to share her findings with all of you! When it comes to building a successful voice acting career, developing confidence, which includes learning to deal with rejection, is just as important as sharpening our acting skills or learning solid business practices. When Maureen started interviewing industry professionals about this subject, she was very curious to hear how they dealt with the emotional challenges of being a voice actor and how their approaches to maintaining a healthy mindset evolved over the course of their careers. Maureen’s tactics and thought processes for handling emotional stress have certainly changed since her earliest experiences as a child stage actor! And she’s grateful for that!

In part one of her report, Maureen will be exploring a subject that greatly affects us all as voice actors over the entire arc of our careers. It’s also a topic that she rarely hears addressed in interviews but is of great importance given how far reaching it is. She’s referring to the dreaded “R” word. Rejection. More specifically Maureen wants to explore how to handle rejection in psychologically healthy and productive ways. Since rejection is one of the most common and inevitable experiences we encounter in the voice over world, it’s crucial to develop a skill set to cope with it well. If we aren’t able to handle rejection effectively, we’re all going to have a rough go of things.

To help her explore these sometimes difficult and loaded topics, Maureen spoke with four wonderfully talented voice actors. Firstly, she sat down with Keith Silverstein, an industry veteran whose work includes Torbjörn in Overwatch, Hisoka in HunterxHunter, and Hawk Moth in Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir amongst many, many more. She then spoke with Laura Post, voice actor and now voice director for the anime series Little Witch Academia. Laura’s voice acting work includes Big Barda in Justice League Action, Ragyō in Kill la Kill, Ahri in League of Legends, and Nozomi Tojo in Love Live! School Idol Project. Maureen also spoke with Ray Chase. Ray voices Prince Noctis in Final Fantasy XV, Master of Masters in Kingdom Hearts 2.8 and Puri-puri Prisoner in One Punch Man. Finally, she sat down with Valerie Arem. Valerie is a voice actor, voice director, and educator. Her directing work includes Persona 4 and Persona 5. She voices Francine in The Walking Dead video game, Naoto Shirogane in Persona 4, and Kyra Mosley in Call of Duty: Ghosts. Valerie and her husband Keith Arem run PCB Productions, a studio in Los Angeles specializing in video game recording. They also teach workshops that focus on voice acting for a variety of video game genres. Maureen was especially interested to talk to Valerie given her wealth of experience as an actor, director, casting director, and educator.

Maureen would like to thank all of her fantastically talented guests for being so generous with their time and for their willingness to discuss these topics with honesty and vulnerability. It meant a great deal to her and she hopes that their words over the course of this series resonate and inspire all of us to continue to develop healthy approaches to the psychological challenges that come with the work we do.

The VAM Field Report will be released on the 1st Wednesday of every month so stay on the look out for it!

Download VAM Field Report Episode #24 Here (MP3)

 

7 Responses to “VAMFR 024 | Maintaining Good Psychological Health as a Voice Actor, Part 1”

  1. Eric Rivera says:

    This was a great episode. When it comes to dealing with rejection I usually try to remember the Jack Angel episode of Voice Acting Mastery. It’s a selection, not a personal rejection. The best thing to do is move on and tackle the next one.

    That’s not to say I don’t have my share of hiccups. Even though I’m trying not to, I find myself always comparing myself to actors my own age or younger. My inner critic putting myself down for not being at the same level. I’m trying to remember that it’s not a race or a contest. It’s a job.

    Thank you all for your time and wisdom.

    • Maureen Price says:

      Hi Eric,
      Thanks so much for your comment! You’re right on target with your perspective here. Dealing with rejection and comparison are lifelong challenges so having that self-awareness is crucial. Wishing you the best!

  2. Thurson says:

    It’s interesting to hear that Ray had to go through a re-auditioning period for his role in Final Fantasy. I knew that there was a period when he was at risk of being recast, but from the outside looking in, it seemed like they just tried changing the direction, and everything else was smooth sailing from there. I didn’t realize the process was a lot more involved, though I’m glad he was able to stay on board, and his performance ended up being really good.

  3. Douglas Frazier says:

    One possible suggestion would be to get back to the potential client and ask for constructive criticism – i.e., if there was something specific about your performance that they found fault with or didn’t like – not to be masochistic but to improve one’s performance — like the way you look in a video shot doesn’t resemble the way you appear in a mirror, you don’t compensate mentally to look good to yourself – then if one can iron out that performance wrinkle, one can feel hopeful that future performances will be that much better – just a thought

    • Maureen Price says:

      Hi Douglas,
      Thanks for listening! I wanted to jump in here to strongly advise against ever asking a casting director/director/producer for an explanation of why you weren’t selected for a job. Firstly, they don’t have time to explain that to you and that isn’t their job. You’ll appear unprofessional and it will be counterproductive to your career. While I completely understand the desire to know why you weren’t cast it’s simply something you have to left go of and make peace with not knowing why. Your best bet for getting feeedback about your work and auditions would be in classes or private coaching sessions. Many voice actors go to a trusted coach when a big audition comes in. That way we get another pair of ears on it and perhaps a different perspective on what we could do with any given character. A reputable workout group can also be invaluable. By participating in these groups you can get immediate feedback from a larger number of people about your performances. It also helps to further establish a community for yourself within the industry.
      Hope this was helpful!

  4. julieparkvo says:

    This was extremely informative, as a person who has no confidence this report has given me hope. I look more forward to the next report because it will dive into the issue I suffer from the most.

    Thank you so much for your hard work and research Maureen, I look forward to your next report. I’m glad that you have touched on this topic. Also, just took a class with Valerie and hearing the ice cream analysis was all too familiar for me.

    Also thank you as always for having this podcast Crispin Freeman : )

    May you have a beautiful day <3

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