Little X

19 Jan

On Saturday January 16th, 2010 I went to a lecture at Ryerson University that Canadian Music video director Mr. X also known as little X taught. The topic of the workshop was *Performing for the Camera* This workshop was for everyone in the industry, from dancers, directors, producer and music artist.

I thought it would be good for me to go and take in the knowledge from one of the industries leading directors.

If you don’t know who X is, now is a good time to Google him. He has worked with some of the industry’s top artist and has directed videos that featured some of Toronto’s finest dancers.

 Little X is the one in the gray suit

I got the chance to work with Little X two years ago, when he directed Kreesha Turners Bounce with me Video.

 On set of Kreesha Turners “Bounce with me” Check out the video on You Tube.

I was one of the featured dancers, the video was choreographed by Toronto’s own and lead judge of “So you Think You Can Dance Canada” Tre-Armstrong.

So what did I take from the workshop?

Ummm dancers and performers all I could say is this, you have to love what you do, because it takes a lot of work to get the final product looking the way it does.

**He touched on some key points that I think is beneficial for dancers and all artist**

1)      When performing in front of the camera, use your body and follow your instincts. Let every move and every shot count, don’t waste a move or a look, let your energy radiate through the camera and into the rooms of all the viewers watching. He used Beyoncé as an example…just watch Beyoncé when she’s doing her thing, it could be a close up or a wide shot, she knows what to do with every part of her body.

2)      Be on point, stay focus, their are many distractions on and off set, you can not come on set, with distractions, time is of essence, and work has to be done, make sure when you arrive on set, that your ready, even if its hurry up and wait which is usually the case.

3)      Do your research, be passionate about what you do, to the point that it becomes an obsession, study what makes the top performers and artist great, watch how they move and how they work the camera, down to the smallest gestures from the way they move their eyes, there fingers, there hands and how they stand. Perfect example Michael Jackson.

4)      Be persistent and put yourself out there. WORK HARD.

5)      He touched on something that was interesting and of course because someone brought it up. Sex Sex…the way women are objectified in videos etc. His point of view is this. A women’s body is beautiful, if she chooses to show it, its her choice, and if you have a problem with it you should solve that problem, she doesn’t have the problem. You do. And why should she change for you, if you get a hard on from watching, then you deal with it. She is a grown women who is able to make educated decisions about her life. …no further discussion is needed. Let’s move on.

6)      Practice, makes perfect. If you’re an artist who doesn’t dance, take dance classes or classes that allow you to move and become aware of your body. If you’re a dancer learn how to move your body with purpose. Practice your facial expressions in the mirror. Understand what it means when the director says, we are using a  18, or 35 lens. Or when he says, we are coming in for a close shot. Know what movements to use, so that the shot is effective, to know this,  you need to know your body.

7)      Most of all when you get in front of the camera be yourself. Let go and do what feels best, follow your instincts, because your instincts is usually the true you.

8)      It’s never ok to tell someone on set how to do there job..ex.  you are the dancer it’s not ok to go to the makeup artist and say could you change my makeup I don’t like the way it looks, it’s not about you, it’s about the video, that’s just an example, I’m pretty sure there are many horror stories of people telling others how to do there jobs…all in all focus on doing your job right.

It was a good workshop, informative in different ways. I was told the next one will be Feb. 7th, 2010. I’ll keep you all posted.

Put it this way, if you want to work and continue to work in the industry, it’s always good to learn, its good to hear from the director himself what he’s looking for…hint hint..:)

On another tip, he brought out a few artists to take part in shooting demo music videos, and could I say, we have talented  artist here, the talent that came out, was nice to see.

Thanks for reading. Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog for updates on everything that makes dance and the art of creating amazing.

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Dance * Live * Inspire

Kay-Ann Ward

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2 Responses to “Little X”

  1. Minerva January 20, 2010 at 3:29 am #

    love it girlie. Thanks for this wealth of information, this i really useful.
    Again, you are an inspiration to me and others. keep doin’ ur thing girl xoxo

    • kayannward January 20, 2010 at 3:55 am #

      Thanks Minerva for reading, I’m glad I could share what I love to do with people like you:) Thanks for the support:) Its people like you who inspire me to do what I do and continue doing it:)

      See you soon:)

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