This blog is about Graphic Design, Vector Art, and Cartoon Illustration

January 13, 2015

Working with actors who just stand there - models

I was watching a commercial recently with a friend of mine and he commented on one of the actors who was just standing there, not saying a word. And the question arose, is this actor really worth even having there? Well, of course he is. He was reacting to the lines delivered by the other actor.

I've never worked with actors, but I have art directed models. And really, if the word *model* makes you just think of a super-model walking down a runway, I can understand. But being a model means so much more than that. And yeah, mostly, they just have to stand there.

Actually models have to do much more than just stand there. They have to look a certain way, they have to show up on time for the photoshoot, they have to dress a certain way, they have to listen to direction, and be patient with the entire process of commercial photography. If you've done modeling for a photoshoot, you know that it's not the same as just standing in front of your friend's cell phone camera and smiling. It takes time, and it takes being able to take direction.

I've worked with models several times, and mostly what I want is for them to just stand there. I don't want them to suggest how the shoot should be done, or carry on conversations with the photographer. You would be surprised how difficult it is for people to just show up and do what they're told. Most people get bored, and fidgety.

By the way, the commercial I'm talking about is from Acura. The actor/model on the right is positively brilliant, giving the perfect performance to enhance the humor. He may just be a supporting actor to the one who delivers the lines, but take a minute and look at him. His look is so perfect, from his *hang dog* expression, to his cheap button-down shirt with a knit tie, to the way he slumps while standing.

Yeah, the guy in the suit gets all the funny lines, but the other actor is working hard, too. It's called reacting, and if you've done much acting, you know difficult that is!

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