Reaffirming My Passion
With my recent adventure into directing, I began to muse if that was something I wanted to start pursuing. I borrowed an excellent book from my HCP cohort Matt, the filmmaker's eye by Gustavo Mercado, and delved into reading about shot types, Hitchcock's Rule of Thirds, and other such compositional treasures. I wondered what it would be like to be a director -- it seemed pretty cool.
But then there was this eerie thing that started happening to me. I felt really down, and started eating a lot of comfort foods (ice cream galore!). I felt unmotivated to be productive, and I felt guilty.
Then the other day, I had a spark of desire to pick out one of the many Shakespeare plays from my bookshelf. Hamlet. I spun through the pages, finally resting on a monologue:
O, what a rogue and peasant slave am I!
Is it not monstrous that this player here,
But in a fiction, in a dream of passion,
Could force his soul but to his own conceit....
The infamous Hecuba speech! The one where Hamlet marvels at the ability of this actor to be so moved by passion for an imaginary person, while he himself is so stuck when he has a real injustice to suffer for.
It's this beautiful simultaneous respect and jealousy of the actor.
I read it aloud, getting more and more empassioned myself, loving it.
And it was then that I realized:
Acting is definitely, without a doubt, for me.
Directing may be fun to do once in a while, and who knows one day down the road I might indeed gravitate to it as I grow and change as a person...
...but right now, my heart and passion definitely still resides with acting.
After that reaffirmation, my soul lifted, my mood improved, and my motivation returned.
I love acting. I love everything about it, and even if this journey can be tough at times, it's worth it.
This finding makes me think of another character's words from another infamous story:
"If I ever go looking for my own heart's desire again, I won't look any further from my own backyard. Because if it isn't there, I never really lost it to begin with."
--Dorothy, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum
To mine and everyone's own backyards,
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Thoughts and ideas about the things that move me most. Passions, desires, favorites.