Have you ever considered doing voice over work from home?
I chatted with Ian S. Tschirhart shortly after he completed the full Work from Home doing Voice Overs course created by Julie Eickhoff.
Ian is also a songwriter who records vocals in his home studio. He was happy to give us some insights into the course, the additional equipment he needed, and where he is headed now that he’s finished his work-at-home training.
Welcome, Ian! What drew you to voice over work from home, and what convinced you to take Julie’s course?
I have been toying with the idea of doing voice over work for the past couple of years. When I found Julie’s course, I was at first attracted by the cost. It was far less than other courses I found. But what convinced me to take her course was its completeness. The outline showed that it covered everything a person would need to get up and running in this business.
How long did it take you to complete the course? When did you work on it?
I think it took me just less than a month to complete the course. I worked on it during the day and early evenings as my regular schedule permitted.
Was it more of a DIY course or did you have enough support along the way?
It was both. Of course, you watch the videos, take notes, and practice on your own, but every time I had a question – there were quite a few – I would send Julie an email and she usually responded within 24 hours with a thorough answer.
I never felt like I was “on my own.”
Do you think it is a realistic course, time-wise, for most people to fit into their schedules? What kind of weekly commitment did it require?
Most of the video lessons are short enough to watch all the way through without consuming too much of your time. However, the technical lessons require more time. As it should be, because they are integral in teaching you how to produce professional voice over recordings, which requires one’s rapt attention.
What would you say is the most valuable thing about the course?
Probably that it is taught by a seasoned professional who created a very thorough course. After finishing this course, I had the confidence I could get started in this business.
If there was one thing you could change about the course, what would it be, and why?
I honestly can’t think of anything. Julie did an awesome job putting this course together.
What would you tell someone considering this course?
I would say, “Take it. It is taught in such a straightforward manner that you will grasp everything you need to know quickly and easily.”
What equipment did you have – or wish you had – before starting the voice over work from home course?
I already had a very good microphone (an SE H-3500), recording program (Presonus Studio 3), and a makeshift soundbooth, but I needed to add some more soundproofing and I now use Audacity more than the Presonus program. I still use that, but for minor purposes.
Do you feel the investment in equipment needed to take the course is realistic/reasonable/affordable?
It was for me. Compared to many other home-based businesses, the start-up costs for doing voice overs is relatively low. A decent microphone can be purchased for about $200, Audacity is free, and you can use your closet for a soundbooth. Even with the cost of the course, you’re still at under $500.
Is it helpful for students to have any specific tech skills prior to taking the voice over work from home course?
Yes, it would be helpful, but not necessary. Julie goes over the technical skills needed to produce professional recordings. She explains these skills in a very straightforward, easy-to-follow way, sometimes showing you twice how to do something. And, of course, you can always go back and watch the videos again.
What’s next for you now that you’ve finished the course?
I’ve set up my profile on a few websites (Voices.com, Voices123.com, ACX, and Backstage) and have bid on a few gigs. Now I just need to stay on top of things by regularly auditioning and placing bids. My goal is to eventually retire from my current job and do voice overs to supplement my retirement accounts.
Thank you, Ian!
How about you? Have you always wondered about voice overs? Does the idea intrigue you? Can you do voice over work from home? You might find my interview with course creator Julie Eickhoff interesting. Also, if you want to “try on” voice over work, she offers a free mini-course, Intro to Voice Over. And, as always, come join the conversation in the comments!