Acting Exercise – Daily Fifteen – Introduction
Everybody is busy. Nobody has time. There is so much to do, and there just isn’t enough time to do it all. I can honestly buy that some people don’t have 2-3 hour chunks in the day to work on their craft. Especially if there’s a day job involved. (If no day job is involved, then I would wonder what EXACTLY takes up all their time.) I also think it’s a bit extreme when I read books that say you must eat, sleep, breath acting. If you don’t work on your craft ALL day, then you aren’t improving. I know very successful people that don’t live and die by their jobs. So why should acting be any different. Anyways, I’m getting off the point. The point is that EVERYBODY has 15 minutes. Somewhere in the day, there is 15 minutes that can be used productively toward your craft. It is the very smallest amount of time, and by no means should be considered “all you have to do.” But it will definitely help, it will definitely make you feel like you are doing SOMETHING for your craft, and it may just get you amped up enough to find bigger chunks of time.
I will begin the daily 15 this afternoon, or tomorrow at the latest. I will add exercises as often as I can.
Acting Exercise – Daily Fifteen – Number 1
Look at a cup, your ipod, or even your finger; something very close (in proximity) to you. Take 15 minutes to explore as much detail as you possibly can. Using the finger as the example: notice the wrinkles on the knuckles, notice the nail. Keep getting more and more detailed in your observation. Don’t lose focus. Notice the different skin tones on your finger. Notice the subtle shades in the wrinkles. Keep increasing your specificity. Notice one particular wrinkle. Clearly try and make out EVERY detail in that wrinkle. Take your time, there is no rush. If the exercise isn’t finished after 15 miutes, just revisit it next time. It’s simply about keeping focus on the object. If you find yourself thinking random thoughts (not related to the object of focus, like, “this exercise is stupid, when will that 15 minutes be over, did I leave the iron on?) just gently put your focus back on the object, without judgement or comment about yourself.
Take a minute, when you are done, to notice your own particular demeanor. Were you nervous doing this? Were you afraid of what others thought of you? Were you worried about doing it wrong? Probably not becuase you were too busy DOING the exercise. Get to know your body in that state. IT is that state of focus that opens the door to powerful performing!
Acting Exercise – Daily Fifteen – Number 2
When people walk, they are led by a certain point in their bodies. Some tough guys lead with their chests; some shy people may lead with their hunched shoulders. Try walking around, putting focus (leading) with different parts of your body. Hoes does leading with different points change how you feel about yourself? Do you become weaker? Stronger? Braver? This exercise is great for an exploration in character development.