Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Picture #307: "Giraffe? No... I said, penguin. Got it? PEN. GUIN."

During most of my performance arts life, I'd always wanted to do something with puppets. I was and am a huge fan of Jim Henson growing up, and in college I was exposed to the work of Julie Taymor and others (before her blockbuster turns with Lion King and Spider-Man), so always thought it would tremendously rewarding and fun. However, puppeteering is something you really have to have a hunger and a passion for - you can't, as a performer, really just DABBLE in puppetry. At least that's my impression. It'd be like a medical doctor who is a general practitioner just dabbling in neuro-surgery. There's a very specialized set of skills that you need to train in for years to be able to perform with any real quality. Fortunately, I do actually believe those skills can be developed independently, by just watching, practicing, watching some more and practicing some more - so there's no need for a $50,000/year puppetry college, thank goodness.

I went to my ballroom dancing class for the first time since taking ill and it was great. I recently watched a video of myself dancing and was appalled - I hate watching myself; I felt I looked just plain goofy. I'm assured by others that I'm not, but now I have this self-image of myself looking akin to a long-haired troll shuffling around in a dance studio stuck in my brain. It doesn't matter though, I enjoy the dancing thoroughly enough that I don't care. It really is the key to life - not letting the judgement of others, and particularly your own self-judgment, keep you from trying things you want to try.

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