The camera or microphone only happens to be there when you perform those particular lines and scenes. The story of the character began before the recording and will continue when the recording has finished. That makes acting so challenging when learning but rewarding when „mastering“.
This interview with Quincy Jones is a Bible of Music Wisdom http://www.vulture.com/2018/02/quincy-jones-in-conversation.html - with many references to quality productions and straight talk. Learned a ton only reading it and following the mentioned reference points, like the value of Jazz music and African influence.
And he was worth the salary because he had one great asset at hand: He was able to develop the best in a person through appreciation and encouragement. Nevertheless, he died bankrupt (due to 1929’s stock market crash) only a few weeks after World War II had begun.
Thomas Edison called him the „master hustler“. Under his leadership, Bethlehem Steel became the second-largest steelmaker in the US. He was paid a salary of over a million dollars a year when earning 50 dollars a week was considered well off.
If your current state of mind doesn't help you, shift your focus away from you towards your readers, who are the ones you're supposed to help in the first place.
Because I personally struggle with distraction, VO is my therapy and cure.
Through the sound of someone's voice, you can hear not only whether he/she means something or is convinced about it but you can tell whether that person is concentrated on what he's saying or attracted to something else. Voiceover forces you to act with concentration.
Saying something through voice only you need to be fully present. Otherwise, your VO performance will suffer and barely anybody will "buy it"
Some of the reasons why I chose a career as a voiceover ;) https://www.gravyforthebrain.com/how-to-become-a-voice-actor/
"It's fun to do voiceover work, although you still have to act. But it doesn't involve memorizing lines, and you don't have to dress up." (Stephen Root)
You hear out the director's vision to solve the interpretation problem and if that doesn’t help you suggest using the „Yes, and…“ technique.
„Yes, and…“ is a powerful way to appreciate and acknowledge the director’s idea, and building upon his idea you’re adding your idea. It's soft transition to suggest your idea so the atmosphere is still friendly and collaborative because you’re working together, not against.
Today. I found a mental image to treat the drunkenness and stiffness: Try to prepare yourself for negative feedback in advance (it can’t always be red roses, of course), think of yourself as a bouncy ball. You can go any direction, up, down, straight whatever the director wants…
You let the bouncing happen like a nice feedback loop until a point when the bouncing no longer delivers the desired performance.
Some thoughts on receiving negative feedback 👎 as a voiceover artist when working in an (ideally) cooperative environment with the casting director and/or producer…
Receiving negative feedback (as an artist) is hard, even devastating at times. I’ve struggled with that myself. My usual body reaction is to become stiff like a wooden tree characterized by the tunnel vision of a drunk person. Drunk and stiff because of the ego on your shoulder.
Today when I read an English article https://theoutline.com/post/3371/shadow-of-the-colossus-open-world-innovation with some words I hadn't heard of before, I was reminded that one always learns. If you believe you've made it to Ivory Tower Wisdom, take a second look and see how wrong you were.
And it's not about the birthday song but the revelation of Michael's real voice...
On a meta note, what I like about working as a voiceover is that you treat your body with pure water (I've been drinking tap water for years) and that in order to endure a hefty recording session you need to stay physically in shape.
Having a background in media and computer science where health issues (back, neck etc.) are not uncommon, VO work is still tons of work and effort but it requires me to be overall healthier compared to just be a "keyboard jockey".