Monday, March 12, 2012

Body Language and "The Artist"

Quote of the Day:  (I found all these quotes and many more great ones on body language at Psychology Today.)

Not only is her body language revealing, but so are her silences, which I find remarkable for an actress. It's how she doesn't say things verbally that I find exceedingly communicative. - Laurence Kardish (It didn't give the name of the actress he's describing.)

(I watched the Oscar winning movie The Artist yesterday and was fascinated by how much story is told through body language and facial expression, not to mention excellent camera work.)

What you do speaks so loud that I cannot hear what you say. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

(I love this one by Emerson. I have felt this way in conversations with some people. What you're saying and what you're doing are not in sync. I learned to trust the non-verbal messages.)

Electric communication will never be a substitute for the face of someone who with their soul encourages another person to be brave and true. - Charles Dickens

(I read this one five times. Charles Dickens said these words, way before facebook.)

But behavior in the human being is sometimes a defense, a way of concealing motives and thoughts, as language can be a way of hiding your thoughts and preventing communication. - Abraham Maslow

(Do you know someone who enters a room and never stops talking? My therapist said that the person who does all the talking wants all the power. I wonder what they're trying to hide behind their mask of words.)

I had Kate take these photos while we rehearsed Coffee Shop Confessions at the Coco Moon. When I viewed them on my computer after rehearsal, I was struck by how expressive we are. You can imagine what is happening by our body language.

Love Jewell's face in this photo.
Do you think she's receptive to what Laura is telling her?

I typed up the words at the other end of this conversation and included them in the script, but the audience never hears them...or do they? When Jewell gets a call from her husband, the mood of the entire cast, and audience, changes. They leaned in. They held their collective breath. They felt the blows of his words.

What are we "hearing" and feeling in this scene?

In the movie The Artist, George Valentin is told to speak from the opening scene, which is an actor playing an actor in a scene in an old silent film. We watch the audience's response. I thought to myself, we're watching a movie about people watching a movie. There were so many parallels and mirror moments in this film. I thought, too, how we tell our stories, on stage and in real life, by our body language and facial expressions, by what we don't say, and by the actions we chose to take, or refuse to do.

Go. Create. Inspire!

Journaling Prompt:  Do you know someone who dominates in a conversation? Do you read body language? Did you see "The Artist"?

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