Being successful in the film and television industry means having to stay motivated, even when the chips are down. Professional actress and owner of Stock-Pot Productions, Tanya Franks, tells us how she does it.
I’m an old-fashioned girl. I like to pen things down before making them digital, so I am using my Stock-pot Productions pen to write this. I had them made in celebration of my creating the company identity twenty years ago, one of the most important things I have done in my life. Through this company I produce theatre and film. The future can so often be in the hands of others, especially in this industry, and I find it invaluable to have a creative outlet that is my very own where I bring in the team of people I want to work and play with.
Twenty-seven years acting professionally brings with it highs and lows, and staying motivated can sometimes prove to be a bit of a challenge. There are two main elements I use to keep myself driven and ambitious.
The first element is wonderment. While growing up I was aware that I actually loved being a child. I didn’t want to leave the shorter version of me behind. Every moment was new, a playful challenge. Now, being an adult, I try to keep that wonderment alive in everything I do, in every person I meet, in all that I see and experience. I feel the wonder of new and fresh approaches of this present opportunity, no matter how miniscule it seems.
The second element is vision – the clarity with which I channel the opportunities that wonder brings. In creating a character I envision the person in my mind’s eye, using such stimulus as people watching, art, books, clothes, and reawakening similar life experiences I may be able to draw on. All of this brings me to the point of seeing the person in my head that I am to play, and therefore feeling them. What we see in our head and what we feel are completely interlinked.
Wonderment and vision, together in their symbiosis, naturally give me the structure to approach every aspect of my personal life and my career. If I feel the wonder and can see the goal as a positive image in my head, then I go with it. Should negatives become apparent somewhere down the line, then I get out as soon as I can, cut my losses (which only increase if you remain unhappy), and open the door to the next positive opportunity.
I’ve just got over the flu, and there’s nothing like illness to make you stop, sweat, and ache out the negatives. To give us back the excitement and appreciation of wonderment, and the clarity and thrill of vision again.
Or follow her on Twitter @thattanyafranks