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Posted by on Apr 22, 2014 in Uncategorized | 1 comment

Were You Born Creative?

Were You Born Creative?

I’m still trying to make up my mind about whether creativity is something you’re born with or something you learn. As a vocalist, I know that performing at a professional level requires natural vocal talent. Training and experience can help a singer learn to better use their vocal instrument — but it still comes down to natural talent, plus training and practice. In her book, The Creative Habit, choreographer Twyla Tharp believes: “Creativity is not a gift from the gods, bestowed by some divine and mystical spark. It is the product of preparation and effort, and it’s within reach of everyone who wants to achieve it. All it takes is the willingness to make creativity a habit, an integral part of your life.” I’m not sure I buy her argument, because I don’t think preparation and effort alone can beat talent. Prepare all you want, and give it your best effort, but if you don’t have the “chops” — natural talent and ability — you need to find another...

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Posted by on Nov 22, 2013 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

10 Commandments of Success in The Media World

10 Commandments of Success in The Media World

Here’s a blog my friend, Phil Cooke, recently published with some practical information everyone with a creative drive needs to know. His company, Cooke Pictures, is one of the leading media companies in the world, so when Phil speaks people listen. Phil: I spoke to a class of university film students at Biola University in Los Angeles, who asked me to give them some career advice before graduation. A friend, award winning advertising writer David Morgenstern, shared some tips with me for the class that he had given to USC film students a few years ago, and they were so fantastic, I wanted to share them with you: 1. Return every call and e-mail quickly. Show up on time, even if you’re the only one there. Dress like you deserve your salary. Believe me, that will put you ahead of a surprising number of people. 2. Write thank-you notes. Remember birthdays. Remember the assistants, and the secretaries, the coordinators, and the mailroom folks. This is a people business. And people...

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Posted by on Nov 7, 2013 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Do You Know Your Brand?

Do You Know Your Brand?

When people mention your name or hire you for a job, what do they think of? What’s your reputation among the people with whom you do business? A business without a brand is like being lost in the woods without a compass. Developing a compelling brand gives your business focus and direction, and enables you to target your ideal audience. 1. Name Your Brand. Think of a catchy, easy-to-understand name that says something about what you do. It’s your hook, says Steven D. Strauss, author of The Small Business Bible. Are you the friendly orthopedist, the hip startup, the cutting edge guy or the cooking diva? Match your name with what you do. 2. What’s Your Promise To Your Customers? It could be your reliability, great customer service, or your friendly attitude. Work to become known for at least one trait. 3. Define Your Niche. Who is your target market? What is the value you provide? “Trying to market to everyone who could possibly buy your products or services, will water down...

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