Thursday, March 3, 2016

POV - Jeff Salazar on Acting (The Power of Choices)

We are proud to continue our new series of student posts we're calling simply, POV. 

Jeff Salazar is earning his BA degree in our Acting for Film program. Each week, he'll share his experiences at Seattle Film Institute and talk about his passion for acting. In this follow-up post, Jeff tell us how making it real can be a great influence in front of the camera, and in life.

On Acting
By Jeff Salazar

The Power of Choices
We are faced with many factors and decisions in life that can change our future.  As with acting, we are chosen to play a part.  A part is not just any part; I try to think of it as “part of someone’s life.” For example, when we go see a movie, we want to watch that part of someone’s life what will drastically change the status-quo. It’s a moment in time and if not handled correctly, there will be dramatic effects on the person and everyone around that character. What makes that dramatic moment even more interesting to watch is the choice the person makes. The actor playing this part must make the choices that are inherent to the character as a whole.

The strength of the character must come from within and then projected outwardly as a living being.  Making those decisions and living with them is a part of life that can create a holistic and balanced approach to thriving. 

Find your objectives as a character and make the decisions you would in following those objectives. The objective is what you NEED as a person/character, and the “magic if” is always in play. Ask yourself, “If I were in this person’s position, what choices would I make?” and follow those with conviction.

For me, in following Stanislavski’s Method, we find ourselves asking what is the motivation of the character. We find that motivation through the objectives presented in basic analysis of the text. What we do to recreate that is to recreate our imagination through the “magic if.”  Make it real for you and decide what to do from there.  

In following these basic steps, your creation of a full-bodied character will come forward, ultimately presenting an utterly true performance; one that can be believed by your audience.

I will leave you with a quote from an actor who inspires many people. Take this knowledge, run with it, and I will see you on the other side. 

“There’s a redemptive power that making a choice has, you know, rather than feeling like your affect to all the things that are happening. Make a choice, just decide: What It’s Gonna Be, Who You’re Gonna Be, and How You’re Gonna Do It, just decide! And then from that point, the universe will get out of your way.” – Will Smith

Have a great week!

Learn more about how Jeff applied The Power of Choice to his personal life as he and his wife made some important decisions. 


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