A job offer just came in!
But as you read about the details, you begin to get concerned. Is this job right for me? will I look like an idiot? Can I back out? Oh shit!
What should you do?
Every artist who works enough will eventually have to ask themselves this question. And the best way to answer it is by preparing beforehand. You should decide, right now, what you will or will not do as an artist; and what fits into a gray area.
For me, I have come to accept that not every project will be perfect; so I have set my parameters as follows:
Am I morally opposed to this project's message? (Political ads, misinformation, religious views, etc.).
Am I being expected to work for free or far below my rate?
Will I be asked to cause harm to something alive for the purposes of the project?
Do I feel unsafe?
Have I had a bad experience working with this person before?
Rules and permits
Not everything is clear cut. For me, the grey area depends on the circumstances. Nudity and discomfort are things that I will deal with if it serves the story, but not for their own sake or shock value. Also, as an actor, I will simulate sex OR be nude, but never both at the same time. (fig leaves are your friends). Things like this fall into my grey area.
If a project does not contain any of my hard no's and works within my grey area, I will take it. Hemorrhoid cream commercial? Sure. Viagra ad? Sure. Jewelry commercial? Done it.
These are my rules. For me. And they might change.
If I were an Oscar winner, I might turn down something that doesn't fit into that mystique, but my current goal is to be prolific above all else.
What are your hard rules?
Decide on them now. Make sure they are yours. And stick to them. If you have an agent or manager, let them know, so you don't feel pressured later. If they do pressure you, find a new agent or manager.
And now; if it doesn't break any of your rules, take the job.
Thanks For Making Art.