I’ve done it before, but never to this extent, or in this particular way.
‘Ready for your close-up? I’m Mr. DeMille. (If you’re too young to get the reference, watch “Sunset Boulevard”)
RG (in blue shirt) directs Paul Garrett. It's ironic that at one point I was directing Paul to use his hands less. Look whose hands are blurred in this shot!!!
This weekend I worked with a group of very talented actors on the first in a series of web-training videos for Firehorse Films…as a Director!
Today’s lesson: expanding your income by being able to offer new services to established clients!
Mind you, the mastermind behind the whole project was Firehorse’s Jean-Paul Dame (pronounced dam-MAY…I don’t know how to use the accent key). But Jean-Paul and I have worked on various audio and video projects over the years. Sometimes I’ve been his on-camera talent. Sometimes he’s recorded me or another VO talent at my studio.
During one session a few years ago, JP was trying to get a particular read from one of my talented VO friends. After several takes failed to bring the desired result, I suggested something-or-other to help the talent get the idea of what he was being asked to convey. Next take: nailed it. From that time on, JP declared I had a new talent: I speak Jean-Paul-ese!
It’s come in handy several times since, with him specifically bringing recording work to me so he can fall back on my ability to know what he wants, and “translate” it into something the actor can then use. May sound strange, but it works.
When this current video project came along, naturally I auditioned. But the age, gender, and ethnicity requirements of the final script meant I was just not right for any of the parts. Jean-Paul brought me in to direct the actors, freeing him up to concentrate on technical issues, and keeping performances consistent for smoother editing later (saving him and his client time and money in both instances). Even I was a little skeptical I was bringing much value to the project. JP is no slouch director himself. But not only did he declare my input of value, the sentiment was echoed by his clients more than a few times. Bottom line: they got what they wanted on-camera…faster and more efficiently…through my “adapted” talent behind the camera.
So…looks like I’ll be directing talent in a lot more of these. And it will actually be much more lucrative for me, since it would be unrealistic to expect I’d show up as a character in project after project. But, as it appears now, my behind-the-scenes work will allow me to be a part of the rest of the series! …keeping fingers crossed on that.
Meanwhile, as you can see from the photo, I’ll be “acting” vicariously through the professionals who are in front of the camera.
…and it still feels good, knowing I’m filling a creative need with some part of my imagination!
What other part of your own creativity might you be using to the benefit of your current clients…and yourself?
— over and out —