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  • Mark Anthony Smith

My Crazy History, Updated.

Updated: Sep 15

I thought this week, it may be a good idea to give you some context, and talk about myself; Why did I start this journey as a voiceover artist and media producer? And what’s my new daily routine like today?


I have worked as a teacher of Theatre, Drama, Media and English for over 26 years. Many of those years have been as a supply teacher, teaching across North and West Yorkshire. I’ve loved teaching and have enjoyed my time in a wide variety of schools, working with wonderful and wacky students and teachers along the way.



But I have always felt and still do that I need something more. I’m passionate about performance and love drama, and there’s been a longing within me to work professionally. Many of my friends work in the entertainment profession as crew, producers, directors and actors; I have followed their careers with interest, wishing that one-day I could be with them on their journey.

“If you want to do it so bad why don’t you try harder“, I hear you say?


Well you’re not alone, this is what I’ve always asked myself for a long time now; I just couldn’t seem to shake off the 9-5. Which to be fair to myself was partly due to my social situation, supporting and caring for mum who was suffering from COPD, a horrendous life-limiting illness.


Sadly in 2019 my situation dramatically changed with the passing of my mother.

So now I’m writing this blog again, as it has taken me sometime to recover from the shock and heartache of losing her. It’s something I will never get over, I’ll just try to take each day as it comes, or so they say.


I’m more determined than ever now to make it work.

I want to use and developed the skills I’ve acquired over the years? I’m a good actor/director - I’ve never stopped filming and editing and I love working with people. I’ve produced short films, videos, live theatre and have worked as an ENG cameraman for a live awards ceremony in Manchester, with Mr Chris Hollins as presenter. Ive also run my own video production company, creating videos for a wide verity of clients and have produced and directed a High-End full-broadcast tv show, which I presented to the BBC In London.

So I suppose all-in-all I’m am working in the profession. It just seems sometimes it’s all up hill. But hay that’s life isn’t it.


My vision now is to create something which makes a difference in people’s lives. My latest venture into voiceover and media production has made me work harder to sharpen up my skills. The hardest skill for me is in business.


And now at last, I feel able to apply the knowledge and understanding to something I love and control, which is a huge step forward for me as my past has always involved a third party making all the decisions.

Being self-employed is exciting but also scary as everything rests on your shoulders, you are the one to make it all happen. So your skill-set needs to be sharp and ready. Well, now as I move on I hope and pray that: love, luck, talent and perseverance will help me through. I will never give up trying to find my way forward, and will always be open for advice: what was it that Steve Jobs once said?

"Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle." Steve Jobs.

My own media career to date then is as follows:


Independent British Voiceover artist Mark1voiceover working remotely from my home studio in Harrogate, North Yorkshire.


Produced and directed a full-broadcast TV show, with a £25k budget, filmed on location in North Yorkshire. Pitched to Lindsay Bradbury at the BBC in London. Directed a play at Northern Ballet, Leeds as part of the Northern Spirit Awards.


Developed and run an Independent Film Company - Hi Films, creating a variety of films and corporate videos.


Professional broadcast experience with ITV on A Touch of Frost & Heartbeat.


My daily routine. After breakfast my day always starts with a dog walk. My darling Pippa is my best friend she is now in her 13th year and is breaking me in well.


I arrive back home to about 9.00 to start my daily calls and emails checking in with people who may require voiceover services. This usually continues for around an hour or two depending on the response. It’s the hardest part of my day as I’m not used to cold calling, which is why I’m developing the history blog to create a content marketing approach with short stories and voiceover- highlighting my services and skills.


Voiceover Practice


I practice my voice skills for a couple of hours a day reading scripts, recording and listening back. This allows me to develop the sound whilst improving my vocal technique and technical skills.


I then move on to research and development identifying potential clients and writing posts for my blog. This brings me to lunch. Usually around 1pm, I have to stop here as I’m starting to feel drained and need to eat :-) Nutrition and health are also now a big part of my routine, I run 3 times a week and eat healthy food.


After lunch is usually filled with catching up on the voiceover networks and further training on the technical skills of voice too. Without becoming overwhelmed it’s quite important to keep up with the technology as it’s always moving and there’s usually something or someone else to consider as I evolve.

I then move back to email marketing and business planning, some days will involve auditioning for voice jobs as they come in; I‘m currently registered with two sites called Bodalgo and Mandy both reputable voiceover sites. This is where most voiceover artist start to build there client base.


Any time I have left in the afternoon will be spent on clients developing and delivering projects. Making sure every project is produced to the best quality, both digitally and physically. I’ve invested in some advanced kit so the quality can be produced precisely; my kit includes:


Hardware:


RØDE NT1-A

Preamp: Onyx Producer 2.2

27 inch iMac i19 with Retina display.

Beyerdynamic Dt 770 Pro headphones.

iPhone 11 Pro Max


Software

Adobe Audition

Final Cut Pro x

FiLMiC Pro

Rode Reporter





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