Reinvention Image by Comfreak
The willingness to constantly reinvent oneself as an actor/artist is a level of self-reflection that is critical for retaining the joy and hunger that most artists crave. There are so many ways in which an artist can get bogged down with monotony, to the point where the process loses its joy. It’s the artist’s job, not the directors’ or fellow artists’, to allow themselves to constantly develop and change. Even if the changes seem drastically different from the familiar in order to progress.
Reinvention Through Variation
Typecasting, although less of a concern in voiceover than in other mediums, is a common way that actors may become frustrated with their lack of growth. Consistently seeking out as much new information and training as possible and providing variation, even within one continuous character, can offer new sides to the artist’s repertoire that those around them may not have been privy to. It’s a two-step process that starts with building the confidence to be open to rebranding oneself and ends with taking the leap. Rinse and repeat.
Reinvention can also be manifested in the form of interactions with other artists. Ideally we should all start out with a hyper-awareness of the respect we should be showing fellow artists, directors, etc. However there is always room for building upon our professionalism. This can be as simple as asking how the studio receptionist’s day is going. It takes time to obtain the skills that are necessary for working relationships. One must be patient with themself but also embrace the opportunity for growth in that realm. Working professionals will tell you numerous stories of other actors who have wasted their talent because of their lack of accountability. They have the skills but not the respect for themselves and others. Until they pursue these qualities in themselves and rebuild, they will never truly succeed.
Reinvent Your Definition of Success
It is so easy working in an art form to focus exclusively on the “end goal” or some perceived pinnacle of success. We can get so caught up in these loftier aspirations that we forget to appreciate the smaller successes within our artistic journeys. Steve has spoken into this a lot in his Teaching Series. Artists are fortunate to be able to cultivate their own definitions of “success” and keep refining that definition over time. It is important to take ownership of the small steps that ultimately lead to the larger goals. Those are the true fabric of what makes us artists. Of course we would all love to make more money or live in a nicer house but those are just potential by-products of success. We can reinvent our definition of success and focus more on whether we are actually getting to do what we love. Are you auditioning? Did you take note of the joy creating that character brought you? Hold on to that.
Look for the Joy
It is easy to be complacent, so we must fend off the voices that draw us into the dark corner of insecurity. Focus on the active steps you can take to remove the self-doubt or uniformity and in their place infuse the creativity and positivity that drew you to the art in the first place.
There is opportunity for reinvention all around you: in the form of character creation, professional acumen, perception of success, even just looking for the joy in your life. Keep looking forward, be kind to yourself, be kind to others.
Director of Media and Technical Services at Blumvox Studios, Brandon Blum manages, edits, and creates much of the content you will see, both on the website and in Blumvox’s social media videos. He also runs the tech for our live classes and offers technical help related to our site for those who need it.
Brandon has a B.A. in Theater Arts from the University of California, Santa Cruz and also works as an actor in the Los Angeles area.