Trick and Treat -becoming the character

Trick and Treat -becoming the character

Posted by John in Articles

Here is a great Character TRICK:

It’s that time of year again – my absolute favorite time in fact – HALLOWEEN!  If you’ve been a follower, you’d already know this about me.  It’s my favorite time of year because I feel that everyone is more comfortable in their own skin when they are behind a mask.  Have you ever noticed that many people are happy on Halloween?  They seem more playful, friendlier, approachable and even sillier?   It’s like everyone let’s go on Halloween, so to me, they act more the way they would like to be, vicariously through other characters.

Most of us who do animation or character work are a certain kind of breed.   You truly have to love to play make-believe and not ever want to grow up.  Be responsible YES, but not truly grow up!  After all, what is growing up?


On Halloween this year, as you watch all the children who come to your door, I usually ask that you dress up and truly become the character – voice, attitude and all, then use this character for your character roster; one you can draw on at any given time….much like the ones you already have in your head.  Or better yet, dress up as a character you’ve voiced (whether for a produced project or for fun) and see if you can put a visual to what you think they would look like etc. and be consistent with them throughout the evening.   These are all BRILLIANT homework assignments and Halloween is the only time of the year you’ll get accepted to do so and for being the TRUE YOU!

This year, however, I want you to pay closer attention to those little goblin and ghouls that come to your door.  If you are pursuing character work, there is nothing better than studying the mouths of babes.  In fact, I encourage you to go one step further, have your little halloweener put on a voice for their character in order to get their treat – remember when kids actually had to earn their candy?!   You’ll get some that will definitely shy away, but watch as you see the kid in all of them truly unfold.  No inhibitions, just pure innocence and spontaneity.  Something society has truly forgotten how to do and something voice talent must possess.

Enjoy their ability to let go and allow them to teach you.  If you can – record the entire thing – then playback and study, study, study…..can you imagine how many characters you could come up with in one night?  Now we’re talking one step closer to demo time – if you can master them that is, and if you can be their character, no matter what script is given to you!

Halloween is a time for playfulness.  I understand there are many that don’t celebrate it, as there is a negative context to Halloween over the years and it’s origination, however we can ALL take this ONE NIGHT A YEAR as our personal playground.  This is where we should all be shining.


So whether you are going to celebrate or not, take Halloween as a day for Character Actors around the globe.  We deserve one holiday where we get to be normal – don’t we?  Let’s turn a negative into a positive and make Oct. 31st a reason to celebrate the character in all of us!


Now I’ll leave you with a TREAT – ENJOY:



Here is a Halloween favorite that even grosses out the kids:

I have two variations to this recipe and it’s super easy!

– 4 Tblsp of Cheez Whiz (or as much as desired) Or use Asiago/Artichoke Cheez Dip

– A few drops of green food coloring

– One box of Wheat Thin Sticks or One bag of Stick Pretzels

– One plate or tray lined with Wax Paper


Mix the food coloring into the cheez whiz until it’s well mixed.  Keeping it at a cool temperature is a good idea so it stands upright.  Once this is well mixed take an individual stick or pretzel and using the tip only, scoop about ½ teaspoon of the mixture onto the tip of the stick – then place mixture side down onto the wax paper allowing the stick to stand up right.  Make as many as you desire and spread out in whatever shape you wish


If you’d like to get in touch with your inner child of play or want to work on some character work, demos etc., I would love to play too!  Send us an email and we’ll get you started on the right path to your next direction.


Enjoy the journey folks – it’s the only one we have.

Happy Voiceen – LOL – hey, it almost works..

Until next time,

VO Chef Deb

31 Oct 2014 No Comments

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