The Camera Loves You, Baby! Here's Rule One
All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players:…And one man in his time plays many parts, said Shakespeare.
Leaders, like the Alert Readers of this humble blog, have a part to play. Lines to read, marks to hit. Here’s your first lesson.
Naomi Judd, Bill Maher, Charmaine Simon Cowell, the acerbic judge on American Idol, knows how to pick talent.
When Simon evaluates the likeability of a performer, he looks not at the action on the stage. He looks at a feed on a monitor at his elbow. To see what the singer looks like on a flat screen. Two dimensional. To see what the camera angle captures.
The first rule in camera love:
Show Your Left Face.
The left side of the human face has the subliminal effect of being more likeable, more approachable.
See Naomi Judd with Bill Maher, above. Bill, as you notice, looks directly to the camera. Maher doesn’t have a good side. (Charmaine was pulled into the frame, the shutter snapped as she searched for the camera. Hazards of a fast moving show-bizie bash.)
Even Naomi’s drunk daughter, Wyonna, posed properly for her police mug shot.
When facing the camera, look to the right and show your left side. It will be your best.
c. 1660; Oil on canvas, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC
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Thank you (foot)notes:
More on the Shakespeare quote at the jump. As You Like It.
And, more recently blogger Pamela Slim.
Mudville Gazette has Open Post.
William Shakespeare – All the world’s a stage (from As You Like It 2/7)
All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms.
And then the whining school-boy, with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress’ eyebrow. Then a soldier,
Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then the justice,
In fair round belly with good capon lined,
With eyes severe and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern instances;
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slipper’d pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side,
His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion,
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.