Came across a blog post today from Stage 32 featuring a couple of videos that might be of interest to creative types that might want to download them into their brain (see what I did there? A truly terrible attempt at a joke. That’s what you call a first draft, and would cut in editing.)
The first video is a unicorn for me, something I knew existed but has been hard to find. I’ve only ever seen ten minutes of it and was amazed by it: Michael Caine on Acting For Film. THE Michael Caine, teaching actors film techniques, filmed for a British production quite a few years ago. Caught part of it on PBS when I was younger, and even though I am not focused on the acting field, the techniques he displays and his passion for the work are inspiring.
PLUS: It’s easily adapted to directing tips, to screenwriting and storytelling. It would even help you if you are just taking a meeting. Caine advises you to “pick an eye”, and shows why.
But if I’m talking to you, and I don’t blink,
and I just keep on going, and I don’t blink….
He goes into methods for holding focus, grabbing attention, and simple tricks to hit your mark, demonstrating everything. Filmmakers: send this link to your actors. He’s not teaching for stage, but he makes comparisons and you can see those differences yourself and find things that would help whatever your venue, like being smaller or bigger with your performance without upstaging.
I’m not going to delve too far into it, because there’s so much here you will find different things than I do.
The second video is from Actualized.org, covering techniques on How To Overcome Creative Blocks and Writer’s Block. Even if you have writer’s block and you watch it and it doesn’t help you, you can tell yourself you were trying to be productive for thirty minutes and feel better about yourself, right? (I guarantee that’s not in the video, nor is it the best tip ever. But we all do it!)
This clip is a little more valuable than that, though. (Spoiler alert: it starts with commitment.)
Just do it. No apologies to Nike. Why would you steal such a powerful statement and apply it only to shoes?
P.S. Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Michael Caine:
Overcoming Creative Blocks is here:
P.P.S. I successfully broke my writing addiction when I was younger (don’t do it!) but I still write (just a little less obsessively). Which was probably a mistake. I’ll talk about that another time.
But I always said I never got writer’s block. This is true in one common perception of the term: I don’t run out of ideas. But I do block myself from writing when I should, and that’s an even more insidious issue that I will be addressing with help from sources like this one.