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Thursday, April 16, 2015

Actors - What Is Your Purpose?


Want to have a life you love? Here's a little diagram for you:


As a career coach I find my Number 1 job is to help actors find their purpose. Career coaching can give you all of the tools to help you get you where you want to be. Some of my most popular coaching sessions are on:

• Type/branding
• Time management & goal setting (balance!)
• Finding the perfect day job
• How to master social media & networking without losing your soul
• Building your book (for singers)
• Audition technique - finding monologues & sides that perfectly represent you!
• How to write to perfect cover letter
• Choosing spot-on marketing materials: headshot, resume, website, reel, etc
• Getting representation
... and more!

If you're interested in finding out how I can make a difference for YOUR career, let's set up a free consultation. I can work with anyone no matter where you live, as long as they have a phone or an internet connection! Email me now!

Email me for your free consultation: erin @ theactorsenterprise. org



Have a comment or question? Leave it by clicking below!

Erin Cronican's career as a professional actor and career coach has spanned the last 25 years in New York City, Los Angeles and San Diego. She has appeared in major feature films and on television, and has done national tours of plays and musicals. She has worked in the advertising & marketing departments of major corporations, film production companies, theater magazines, and non-profit acting organizations. To learn more, check out http://www.theactorsenterprise.org.


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Need Inspiration? 42 Quotes To Motivate Actors



Image courtesy mariashriver.com
I don’t know about you, but I have always been a fan of quotes. It goes back to my high school days, when my Civics teacher, Mr Alstrum, used to have quotes written on the board in the classroom. The first I remember really taking to heart was a Chinese Proverb: “Talk does not cook rice.” This perfectly encapsulated my personal creed in as few words as possible: Only action can make a real difference for myself and others. Since then I’ve amassed a few other favorite quotes, ranging from motivational, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t make,” (Wayne Gretzky) to the tongue-in-cheek, “Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.” (Groucho Marx)

As a business owner (remember, as actors we ARE business owners), motivational quotes can make a huge difference is providing a little “willpower kick” when times are tough. They not only soothe but they can also teach us something about the world or help us to see things from an angle we never have before.

I’ve scoured the internet to find the best 42 quotes to help you navigate this business. Leave a comment and let me know what you think!


ON ACTING:

“I regard the theatre as the greatest of all art forms, the most immediate way in which a human being can share with another the sense of what it is to be a human being.” - Thornton Wilder

"Every child is an artist.  The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up." – Pablo Picasso

“Acting deals with very delicate emotions. It is not putting up a mask. Each time an actor acts he does not hide; he exposes himself.” - Jeanne Moreau

“If you’re the type of person who has to fulfill your dreams, you’ve gotta be resourceful to make sure you can do it. I came out to California when I was 21, thinking my New York credentials would take me all the way. I came back home a year later all dejected and a failure.” – Vin Diesel

“Acting is all about honesty. If you can fake that, you've got it made.” - George Burns

“To grasp the full significance of life is the actor's duty, to interpret it is his problem, and to express it his dedication.” - Marlon Brando

“First of all, I choose the great [roles], and if none of these come, I choose the mediocre ones, and if they don't come, I choose the ones that pay the rent.” - Michael Caine

“I’m an assistant storyteller. It's like being a waiter or a gas-station attendant, but I'm waiting on six million people a week, if I'm lucky.” - Harrison Ford


ON PERSEVERANCE:

“I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” – Michael Jordan

“Everyone has talent. What is rare is the courage to follow the talent to the dark place where it leads.” - Erica Jong

“There is only one way to avoid criticism: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing.” – Aristotle

“The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” – Ayn Rand

“When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.” – Henry Ford

“The difference between perseverance and obstinacy is that one comes from a strong will; and the other from a strong won’t.” - Henry Ward Beecher

“The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity.” – Amelia Earhart

“Whenever you find whole world against you just turn around and lead the world.” - Unknown


ON MOTIVATION AND TAKING ACTION:

“Build your own dreams, or someone else will hire you to build theirs.” – Farrah Gray

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” – Chinese Proverb

“The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person who is doing it.” – Chinese Proverb

“The minute that you’re not learning I believe you’re dead.” – Jack Nicholson

“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” - Albert Einstein 

“Courage is doing what you're afraid to do. There can be no courage unless you're scared.” - Eddie Rickenbacker

“Desire is the starting point of all achievement, not a hope, not a wish, but a keen pulsating desire which transcends everything.” - Napoleon Hill

“Vision without action is daydream. Action without vision is nightmare.” - Japanese Proverb

“I wondered why somebody didn’t do something. Then I realized, I am somebody.” — Unknown


ON MAKING A DIFFERENCE:

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou

“Be nice to people on the way up, because you may meet them on the way down.” – Jimmy Durante

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” – Anne Frank

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead

“If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.” – Booker T. Washington

“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs, ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” – Howard Washington Thurman

“Be the change you wish to see in the world.” - Mahatma Gandhi


ON SELF-IMAGE AND STAYING POSITIVE:

“Getting ahead in a difficult profession requires avid faith in yourself. That is why some people with mediocre talent, but with great inner drive, go much further than people with vastly superior talent.” - Sophia Loren

“You’re only human. You live once and life is wonderful, so eat the damned red velvet cupcake.” – Emma Stone

“Respect your efforts, respect yourself. Self-respect leads to self-discipline. When you have both firmly under your belt, that’s real power.” – Clint Eastwood

“We are always more anxious to be distinguished for a talent which we do not possess, than to be praised for the fifteen which we do possess.” - Mark Twain

“Remember no one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

“Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.” - Judy Garland

“Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it.” – Charles Swindoll

“Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right.” – Henry Ford

“The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” – Alice Walker

“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson



Which is your favorite quote from above? Or have a favorite quote you’d like to add? Share it in the comments below!

Erin Cronican's career as a professional actor and career coach has spanned the last 25 years in New York City, Los Angeles and San Diego. She has a weekly "Expert" column on the business of acting at Backstage magazine. As an actor, Erin has appeared in major feature films and on television, and has appeared Off Broadway, regionally and on national tour with both plays and musicals. She has worked in the advertising & marketing departments of several major corporations, film production companies, theater magazines, and non-profit acting organizations. To learn more, check out www.theactorsenterprise.org.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Free Networking & Career Development - April 18!



I'm very excited to welcome Lianne Robertson to this blog to write a guest post about an incredible event for actors that she's spearheading, called the Actors Pro Expo. I first got involved with the event last year, when I "live-tweeted" from the Expo floor and from a few workshops on behalf of the NY Actors Tweetup (for which I'm a co-founder!) I have been to many trade shows, and this one really had a warm vibe and had great opportunities for the actors who attended. And of course this makes sense, because the event has been designed and created by actors!

I'm especially impressed by the seminars and workshops that Lianne has put together. Love musicals? Check out the seminars with Jay Binder (Binder Casting) and Justin Huff (Tesley & Co Casting). Want on-camera work? Take these incredible workshops on Dramatic Improvisation and Audition Technique. Each seminars & workshop is only $30 - totally affordable for an actor on a budget.

I've invited Lianne to say a little bit about what makes this event special, and to encourage you to join me in New York City on April 18 - it's going to be an amazing time!

Lianne Robertson, Actors Pro Expo
"The acting industry can sometimes be a tricky place to navigate, there are so many different components that you need to take into consideration when growing yourself as a business! You’ve got to get your headshots, make your website, organize your taxes, find an agent, find a flexible job that will support your sporadic audition-based lifestyle, try to find said auditions and above all get your name out there to casting directors! Sheesh, what a balancing act! But what if we told you that there’s a place you can go which has all the information and advice on every one of these components? Don’t believe us? Then come along to Actors Pro Expo on April 18th and see for yourself! 
Actors Pro Expo is an event designed by actors for actors with our fundamental goal being to help you create opportunities to develop and sustain your career. We have over 25 vendors from every sector of the industry to give you the most complete advice possible; it really is the ultimate Actors Tool Kit. Guerrilla Photography will be there to offer headshot assistance, eStage for all your website needs, Bambridge for all your taxation questions, The Actors Project to help you land an agent, Mustard Lane, FSS and Atrium to help you find a flexible part-time job and Backstage, actors access, Casting Networks Inc and CastingAbout to ensure you have all the info on the latest castings and how to apply. We’ve also got The New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts, Stellar Adler Studio of Acting, Playing With Reality, The Accent Kit, Scott Powers Studios, Methuen Drama, Roger Hendricks Simon Studio, Art & Soul Acting, David Brunetti, Broadway Dance Centre, Play by Play, The Actors Enterprise and Studio 4 to ensure your acting skills remain top notch and to give you ongoing advice and training after the event. Finally SAG-AFTRA as well as Criscione, Ravala & Tabatchouk, LLP will be there to offer any legal advice you require.  
Aside from all these incredible vendors, Actors Pro Expo will also be hosting an OPEN CASTING for director Rob Margolies next project a ‘SAG-AFTRA new media agreement’ Web Series! Registration opens at 10am and is first come, first served so arrive in plenty of time to secure your slot! 
There will also be ongoing seminars and workshops on throughout the day held by Casting Directors and other industry professionals so you can get in-depth information on specific aspects of the industry that you want to know more about.     
Finally, in terms of helping you get your name out to Casting Directors, we will be offering Casting Director Dropboxes. Simply print out your resume and pop it in one or all of the boxes. Each CD will then review their box after the event and who knows, you may be getting a phone call!  
Overall Actors Pro Expo is here to help you build, grow and brand yourself as a business. Oh and did we mention, it’s FREE?! You can register here for your free entrye-ticket and to book some seminars & workshops.  
We can’t wait to see you at the event!  
The Actors Pro Expo Team"


Have a comment or question? Leave it by clicking below!

Erin Cronican's career as a professional actor and career coach has spanned the last 25 years in New York City, Los Angeles and San Diego. She has appeared in major feature films and on television, and has done national tours of plays and musicals. She has worked in the advertising & marketing departments of major corporations, film production companies, theater magazines, and non-profit acting organizations. To learn more, check out http://www.theactorsenterprise.org.


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

When Did We Stop Being Artists?


Photo Credit: Momtastic.com
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about art and expression, and some of the fears that actors have as we try to explore the things that inspire us. There so much of an emphasis on doing “good” work, so much energy put into work that can propel you “to the next level.” I’ve started wondering -- when did we stop creating art because it was fun to be expressive? To tell stories? To pretend to be someone else, and show off these characters to our family and friends? Thinking back, and I think everything changes when people hit that magic age of 7 -- the “age of reason.”

I’m at the point where many of my friends are starting to have children, and one common element you find in each parents’ home is the refrigerator filled with drawings from their child. Heck, even if you aren’t a parent, if you know children you probably have a piece of artwork hanging on your wall. Or a batch of photos from a child’s recital. Or a video from a school play. Parents and family members weep happily at the sight of a child expressing him/herself in an artistic way.

And then, at some point, this stops. Parents stop encouraging artistry. Drawings are removed from refrigerators and videos are put in the cabinet (to be pulled out when the child is 16 and bringing her boyfriend to the house for the first time. Oh yeah, we’ve all been there.) What happened? I have a theory -- The Age of Reason is killing art.

According to Scholastic.com, the Age of Reason is described as:

“Few parents would argue with the observation that children age 6 and younger do not have great control over their feelings and impulses. Nor is your very young child likely to take genuine responsibility for her actions, or heed adults’ urging to be considerate of others... It is not until the age of 7, give or take a year or so, that your child’s conscience begins to mature enough to guide her actions...It’s been called the “Age of Reason,” since these children have a newly internalized sense of right and wrong... At 7 “plus or minus one,” your child begins to problem-solve in a new way, using reason rather than pure intuition. He can separate fantasy from reality; and so can be expected to know and tell the truth... At about 7, fears are no longer of monsters, but of real people, and most of all of not being liked, being different, and risking loneliness. Pride and shame are real now too. Real, rather than simply imagined achievement, enhances self-esteem...”

Not only do children lose the ability to fantasize without embarrassment, but it’s also the people around who change their viewpoints on their children’s artistic impulses. At an early stage, a child singing out of tune is adorable, at another point, the child is hushed and told not to sing. Children and adults, alike, stop painting pictures because they tell themselves, “I’m not good at it,” and forget that creating art is about expression, not about excellence.

“Every act of conscious learning requires the willingness to suffer an injury to one’s self-esteem. That is why young children, before they are aware of their own self-importance, learn so easily.” -- Thomas Szasz

Of course, if one wants to make money at an artistic profession, that’s when excellence becomes important. But in the striving for excellence, many actors forget that joy of creating and playing for fear that it won’t live up to some standard that world has set for them.

So, I am challenging myself, and the artists around me, to nurture their inner artist and beg it to come out to play. Find an environment where you can practice being expressive and go hog wild. Pretend to be bigger and badder than you ever dreamed possible. Will yourself into a new reality that gives you a visceral charge. Fight the Age of Reason and awaken your imagination in the way we did as children.

As a side note: it’s also around the age of 7 that we stop unabashedly seeking an audience. When’s the last time you ever saw an adult jump into a crowded room, do a little two step, then chime, “Ta-da!” to elicit applause? For once, I want to do something silly and have a bunch of adults exclaim, “Yayyyyy!”


Have a comment or question? Leave it by clicking below!

Erin Cronican's career as a professional actor and career coach has spanned the last 25 years in New York City, Los Angeles and San Diego. She has a weekly "Expert" column on the business of acting at Backstage magazine. As an actor, Erin has appeared in major feature films and on television, and has appeared Off Broadway, regionally and on national tour with both plays and musicals. She has worked in the advertising & marketing departments of several major corporations, film production companies, theater magazines, and non-profit acting organizations. To learn more, check out www.theactorsenterprise.org.

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