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Five Top Tips for Getting Children to Cooperate On Camera

Five Top Tips for Getting Children to Cooperate On Camera

A number of truly fantastic child actors and actresses have graced our screens over the years in television and film, and it would be fair to say that they make it look pretty easy.

However, what the viewers see is the end result of many months of hard work and time spent on film sets.

Working with children on camera is probably just as daunting for the film crew or photographers as it the youngsters.

You might be wondering how the directors and film crew do such a wonderful job working with younger children with the risk of stage fright, tantrums and non-cooperation potentially looming at any point.

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Here are five top tips when it comes to working with young actors to help bring out the best in their acting skills so that you end up with the best possible material for your project.

Build up a rapport

It’s really important that you build up a positive understanding with the child early on in the filming process, ideally before the cameras are switched on.

Gaining the child’s trust is key as highlighted in Timid Monster’s article discussing tips for directing children. This can sometimes be more effective outside of rehearsal time, therefore, see if you can arrange a time with the child’s parents to take them out for a milkshake.

This will go a long way in the child being able to trust and be more comfortable around you, which will be a big help on set.

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Create a positive environment

Children respond much better to positive energy and will become much more comfortable in a filming environment which is friendly and welcoming as recommended in Backstage’s article.

Help the youngster to overcome any nervousness about acting on set by introducing them to the rest of the cast members and film crew. You could even take them around the set and show them interesting pieces of equipment.

While this might sound simple, it could go a long way in making the child feel more at ease and comfortable in an unfamiliar environment.

Bring in the baby wrangler

Time is clearly of the essence when filming, therefore, a very effective solution to ensure that your young actors are cooperating and performing at their very best is to hire a baby or child wrangler.

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The role of baby wranglers is to help make the child feel as relaxed and happy on the film set as possible so that the director and film crew can get to work on achieving the best possible shots.

Filming With Kids very own baby wrangler, Peter, said that “Filming must fit in with the child’s schedule. It sounds obvious, but this is often overlooked. There are also some tricks of the trade to keep children animated without wearing them out like making sure there is a supply of their favourite toys.”

So if you yourself will be working with children on a film or photography set then it could definitely be worth considering hiring a baby wrangler to help make sure that your time on set goes as smoothly as possible.

Know when it’s time to stop

It’s no surprise that spending a long day on set will result in young actors becoming tired, bored and unproductive. To help maintain a higher level of productiveness and ensure that the child is really giving all they can during production, try and get your shots as quickly as possible.

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Furthermore, if things aren’t quite going the way you’d like them to, then it’s perhaps time to call it a day. You certainly don’t want to run the risk of making the child feel stressed and discouraged, so make sure you know when it’s a good time to stop for the day, or at the very least, have a break.

Always say thank you

Lastly, it’s vital that you always remember to thank the child for their hard work and cooperation, as well as telling them how great they have been.

This can really go a long way in maintaining a positive vibe, and it also lets the child know that you appreciate all of their hard work. Rewards are also a great way of saying thanks and sustaining a good relationship with the child.

All in all, make sure that the child leaves the film set with a smile on their face! For more tips on encouraging your child’s cooperation on camera head to the Clickin Moms blog.

Featured photo credit: Shutterstock via shutterstock.com

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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