On-Camera presentation skills -- for the occasional job that requires you to be on camera. How to use the Tele-Promp-ter. Where to look? How to look? Memorizing. Interviewing skills. Dress. Make-up. Dealing with HD. Preparing for your session.
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My Face is My Passport

You can become familiar with doing on-camera work just like you (at one time) got used to hearing your recorded voice. So set up your home video cam on a tripod at home, and practice looking into the camera and saying whatever comes to mind. You might feel stupid doing it, but when you look back at what you've recorded...you'll begin to see what works for your "look" and what doesn't.

Most on-camera performers are their own worst critic. So record some on-cam stuff, and tear it apart. Then change something and try again. The idea is to become comfortable doing it. Just like listeners can hear a disingenuous quality in your voice, viewers can detect a false persona on-camera in a NY minute.

One of my first reactions to working in voice-acting was...What? I get to do more than one take??!!

Local TV News is unique among TV programs today, in that it really IS live. You get one chance to get it right. Thankfully, when you show up for on-camera jobs in the freelance world, you usually have as many takes as you want (or as they want) to get it right.

But you can really impress the producer if you can "nail it" on the first or second take. That saves them time and money, and makes you look like a professional.

On-camera work is not intimidating. Public speaking IS...but that's another topic.

I plan to lead some discussions here, and will pose questions for those of you who would like to pursue more on-camera work. But in the meantime, feel free to fire away with questions, issues, quandaries, or general discussions of your own.

I'm game for taking this group in any direction.

Thanks for joining, and let me know how I can help.

Dave Courvoisier
(aka CourVO)

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  • Glad to know that you started this topic. It's one that I've been interested in for a while as I have some voice actor friends who also do on-camera work. Thanks
  • Thanks Dave for the great group. I know there's much to learn. Especially from a pro-as yourself.
  • Hi Courvo. Nice group you have here. Hope to see you in Feb.
  • Eric.... Luckily, I don't have to do a lot of that thanks to the prompter... but repetition works for me... saying it over and over, then testing it -- finding where the "hang-up" word is, and doing it again.

    Sorry I can't be more help.

    Dave C
  • Curious, I'm always looking for a better way to memorize text. What techniques do you use?

  • I am looking forward to this group! It'll be great to pick your brain... a wonderful addition to the skills of those often unseen

  • Hi Dave! Thanks for the invite. Look forward to being part of the gang. This area of v-o is quite new to me!
  • Hi Dave... great group idea!!! I'm actually interested in learning about on camera work and am thinking about getting headshots done. If nothing else, it'll be a fun experience. I look forward to learning from you!
  • Hi Dave! I know I'll never be a news anchor....But I'll enjoy reading your advice anyway. And besides, it's just nice to be in a group with you! Hey! Check out my group, "Positive Thinkers UNITE". You'd be a perfect person to be there. See you in LA in August!
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