Importance Of FUN In Your Craft
Don’t lose sight of the WHY behind your acting journey. Do you still love what you do?
Right now is a weird time to be in this industry, and you know what… that’s okay! The past three years have been marked by way more ups and downs than usual, and believe me, there are usually a lot of ups and downs anyways. Coming out of a global pandemic to the recent writer’s strike, it can be easy for actors to slip into a negative headspace and wonder ‘what’s the point of being an actor if there aren’t any auditions right now?’.
Let me remind you that there are tons of benefits to acting other than the monetary gain offered by working gigs! If you’re in this business to make money, I hate to burst your bubble, but it might be time to reprioritize. Being a working actor can seem inconsistent, and if we measure our success by how many bookings we get, we’re going to be disappointed at the end of the day. Why? Because those factors are beyond our control! Yes, of course we love being on-set and being a part of cool projects, but genuinely- if you don’t enjoy acting and using it as a medium to express yourself for the JOY of doing so, you probably shouldn’t continue doing it!
Ask yourself why you got into this. Did you take a class and fall in love with the community and the process of working with others to tell stories? Do you love using your imagination to create characters with complex inner workings? Do you tend to observe yourself and others when it comes to movement and expression and find that acting is a way to articulate what you’ve observed about you and the world around you? What is it about the art of acting that intrigues you, what keeps you coming back for more? Find the JOY. Remember why you started! That’s what’s going to help you keep going.
When it comes to reigniting our passion when things get hard, I feel there are three steps that anyone can take RIGHT NOW to help you get back into your groove.
What have you heard people raving about right now? What’s still chilling on your Netflix list that you never got around to watching? We want to be consumers of content, not just creators of content, because media literacy is powerful! Similar to how great writers must first be great readers, great actors must also be avid moviegoers and consumers of content. If you’re curious about what I mean by Media Literacy and want to learn more, check out our blog highlighting the importance of media literacy for actors HERE. Basically, media literacy refers to consuming media with a lens that seeks to understand not just how it was created, but what its greater function is, both for the individual consumer and the greater culture. TAS Coach Sanna Erica said “Becoming educated in film and film history is quite important for actors. Knowing which films shaped our industry can be a great tool in your artistic tool belt, as inspiration from prior works influences tone, style, and inevitably, performance in contemporary work. If you have an opportunity to take a film theory class, do it. If not, start with the AFI (American Film Institute) 100 – you can begin your education by watching the greats right in your living room”. Basically, if you’re looking to become one of the greats, you first have to observe and study the greats.
Learn From Someone Who’s Come Before You -
Whether you look up interviews of your favorite actor, read a memoir or acting technique book, or have a session with a trusted private coach, the value of learning from someone else’s experiences can’t be overstated. Who is an actor whose career you really admire? What can you learn from the stories and advice they’ve already publicly shared? Is there an acting book already on your shelf that you just haven’t picked up yet? If you’d like to chat with an industry professional in real-time and get specific feedback on where you are and where you’d like to be, you can get set up with a TAS coach by checking out our Career Coaching options HERE. A private coach is going to be able to help you set goals, create a plan to get there, and hold you accountable for your next steps! Just like that age-old proverb that you should never be the smartest person in the room, you really shouldn’t be the most experienced person in your acting circle. Mentorship in multiple forms, both in-person and virtually, is so important for your craft. So make sure that you are learning from those around you as well as from professionals in your field. Private coaching, classes, networking events, or even doing free research on the internet is a good way to start!
Put In Some Practice (even if that means practicing by yourself)!
Whether that’s by pulling a scene or monologue from something you’ve previously watched or writing your own, give yourself something to memorize as though you do have an audition! Make an imaginary deadline and issue yourself a challenge: try preparing two completely different takes of the scene or monologue. An added challenge could be: self tape it at home! All you need to self tape at home is a phone or camera, something to set it on like a tripod or book stack, and a clean background in a room without a ton of background noise. Play with your setup at home and see what works best for you! As actors, if we are only practicing once we get auditions, we likely aren’t going to thrive in those auditions. Just like how athletes have to stay in shape by working out, actors need to stay ‘in shape’ by practicing our skills. Memorization, character preparation, performance, and self taping are all things that we can practice at home in-between auditions so that we can stay ready. Keeping these skills fresh in the ‘off’ seasons is going to benefit you once those auditions do come back along.
Wherever you’re at in your journey, managing expectations, continuing to learn, and keeping it fun are the keys. Acting is an art that helps people communicate, express themselves in a healthy way, and gain confidence both personally and professionally. So no matter what your goals are, make sure that you are still enjoying the process!
Ready to get started? Reach out today!
Share This Article
About The Author
Molly Pass is an Atlanta-local actress, acting coach, and wedding videographer who loves to help new and seasoned actors alike find their purpose and passion through performance. She holds her bachelor’s degree in Film and Media Studies from Georgia State University and enjoys discussing movies, shows, and all things new media. Her favorite part of working at The Actor’s Scene is being able to inspire folks to pursue their dreams and helping them to gain confidence in themselves along the way. When she is not acting or working in the digital media realm, she enjoys reading murder mysteries and desperately trying to keep a garden alive.