Thursday, April 19, 2012

Are You Looking at Me? You Should Be!

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Have you ever met someone – at a party or networking event – and even though you’re talking to them, they’re looking everywhere but at you? Like they’re searching the room for someone better to talk to?

Annoying, right? You just want to flick them between the eyes and say, “Hey! Am I boring you here?”

You’ve been there. You know what I’m talking about.

Now let me tell you about something I’ve noticed in my acting classes and casting director workshops –-

Actors. Doing scenes with scene partners or off-camera readers. And not looking at them!

They look away, look down at their hands, look around at the air – look anywhere but at the person they’re talking to!

Have you ever seen actors do this? Or have you done it yourself? Are you one of those actors? If so, you gotta stop!

I don’t know what you think you’re doing – embodying the character’s carefree nature, displaying nervousness, whatever – but what you look like is one of those party people with the wandering eyes. You don’t look like a character engaged in an authentic conversation – you look like you’re “acting.”

Because I don’t know about you, but when I’m talking to someone in real life, I look at them. It’s kind of standard. Watch a scene with your favorite actor on TV or film – chances are they look at the people they’re talking to.

Think about this the next time you’re doing a scene with a partner. Put your focus on them completely. It may feel weird, but it looks right. Trust me.

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