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Next Creator Up
1 minutes | Jul 22, 2019
Season 2 Coming Soon
Hey everyone, This is a special announcement episode. We’ve officially ended the first season and it’s been an incredible learning experience. I not only learned a lot about how to create, produce, and host a show, I’ve also taken a lot from each of our guests. We covered a lot of ground this season. Through interviews with creators in numerous fields, we explored: the power of sharing our truth through our art and channeling our scars into our creations; the sacrifices we make as artists, and why they’re worth it; how we can define success for ourselves; and the importance of allowing ourselves to fail, to name just a few key takeaways. This first season has been incredibly rewarding for me. I’ve received some wonderful feedback from listeners and have been fortunate to meet some inspiring, talented people through this experience. Though I’ve already gotten a head start on season 2 and have some interviews completed and scheduled, I’d love to know what you think of the show and how I can best meet your needs going forward. What do you all like so far? What do you want more of? Less of? What are you struggling with on your creative journey? I’ve received a lot of emails and feedback over this first season from people who want more on getting past blocks, dealing with difficult feelings, and tackling motivation. What else would you like me to explore in the next season? You can email me at email@example.com, or you can share your thoughts in a review on iTunes. This not only enables you to offer your suggestions, it also helps the show reach a wider audience. Thanks for listening! Looking forward to next season! The post Season 2 Coming Soon appeared first on Next Creator Up.
52 minutes | Jul 8, 2019
NCU Podcast #010: John Presnell on Disconnecting from Technology, Songwriting, and the Power of Joy in His Creative Process
John Presnell is a singer/songwriter who composes songs in light and dark tones that range thematically from romantic to political, and dramatic to whimsical. In this episode we discuss John’s socially conscious song “Pills,” as well as his song “Life’s So Unfair,” on which he collaborated with Stephane Wrembel, who wrote the theme song to the Grammy winning soundtrack to Midnight In Paris. We also discuss John’s songwriting process, inspirations, and advice to songwriters. Please welcome our next creator up, John Presnell. Episode Highlights 1:32 Why John decided to pursue a creative life and when he got started 3:00 What John attributed to learning how to play the guitar quickly 4:17 Where John’s love for writing came from 5:08 John’s biggest sacrifice in his career so far 6:30 John’s feelings about playing live 7:45 John’s song “Life’s So Unfair” and its inspiration 10:42 John’s song “Pills” and what inspired it 11:41 How John found his voice as an artist 14:41 How much of John’s life is reflected in his own work 15:35 If John could change something about society with his art, what would it be? 18:40 Why John disconnected from technology 22:43 John’s creative process from idea to completed song 23:50 John’s influences 28:05 John’s brief diversion from music and lessons along the way 34:30 Advice for aspiring songwriters and musicians 35:48 John’s share worthy 37:38 The lightning round! The questions aired in this episode: How do you define creativity? What’s the most important part of your creative routine? How do you think one can expand one’s mind and creative abilities? How do you know an idea is the right idea? What is the most helpful thing you’ve learned or useful skill developed during your career? What is something you do to ignite your creativity and get into a creative zone? Do you believe in being creatively blocked? When I’m feeling unmotivated it helps me to? Do you ask yourself questions about your work? Has anyone ever given you any words of inspiration that you’d like to pass along to others? John Presnell Quotes Worth Remembering “I’ve sacrificed everything, personal life, financial stability, everything in pursuit of my art. It’s not an easy thing to do, but I do it for the joy of it.” “You let the art and the beauty of the art sustain you, that is what gets you through. You’re not living a typical life or a conventional life, so you have to rely on other things to help you get through. Just the ability to create does something to one.” “For me getting up onstage is an act of joyous abandonment… I just focus on the words and try to get my message across.” “Let the music enchant you and you will enchant the audience.” “Not everyone has the same endowment of life force. Some people can take on a lot of loss and a lot of sorrow and bounce back. And there are other people who have lived completely privileged, easy lives and one thing comes along and they’re destroyed by it. I think it’s fascinating that some people can roll with it and other people can’t.” “I have an idea of what I want to do, then I look for the collaborators that I think would be right… I kind of look at it like a coloring book. The songwriter is the person who creates the picture and the musicians are the crayons that give it a certain tone.” ”Trial and error, you find your voice. You just have to keep at it.” “Art can be whatever, you can have any kind of message. It can be constructive or destructive. However, I think it would be a better world if we took responsibility for the messages we put out there.” “It’s an artist’s world, and we’re just living in it. From the shirt you’re wearing to the car you’re driving, someone has designed it. There is art everywhere. Art exerts an enormous influence on people. People often say that art reflects society, which I think is true, but I also think society reflects art.” “Even if you’re plugged in remember you’re going to get an echo chamber. Your ideas will already be reinforced. The algorithms of YouTube for example see what you like and will feed that to you… You are only going to end up with the stuff you’re interested in… Unlike an echo chamber I’m not getting my ideas reinforced with more of the same, I’m looking for as many points of view as possible.” “The art of writing a lyric is that the listener gets it clearly the first time they hear it.” “There is a lot of attendant insanity for any profession you’re involved in, so if you love something you will happily go through it, but if you don’t it’s torture.” “Take in as many points of view as possible. Listen to what people have to say. Watch what people are doing. Take it all in, that’s the beauty of life, that there are so many different points of view. That will certainly expand your creativity.” “Don’t take it all so seriously. We’re here to enjoy life, and the people who have fun are the ones who win.” “The joy is in creating. Let the universe take care of the rest.” “If you’re an artist keep on creating. You never know when the thing you create is perfect for the times.” “I think that when you struggle or when you desperately want something you can’t have it, but if you’re light about something and have fun it comes easily.” Mentioned in This Episode “All My Loving” by The Beatles Vincent Van Gogh Stephane Wrembel– Theme from Midnight in Paris, collaborated with John “Life’s So Unfair” – John’s song and music video “Pills” – John’s song and music video Django Reinhardt Frank Sinatra Cole Porter The Great American Song Book Elvis Presley The Beatles Songs for Swinging Lovers Album – Frank Sinatra Fame –TV Show Julliard The Lives of Others – German Film (John’s share worthy) Dreams into Action – book Connect with John http://johnpresnell.com *digital painting of John Presnell by Gary Kaleda The post NCU Podcast #010: John Presnell on Disconnecting from Technology, Songwriting, and the Power of Joy in His Creative Process appeared first on Next Creator Up.
51 minutes | Jul 1, 2019
NCU Podcast #09: Lucy Chen on Painting Healing Depression, Courage as an Artist, and Freeing Yourself up for Expression
Lucy is an oil and oil pastel painter. Her paintings are in private collection throughout the world in Australia, China, France, South Africa, Finland, Germany and the United States. In this episode we discuss her creative process, how painting helped heal her depression, being courageous as an artist, and her method for being more expressive and freeing yourself up. Episode Highlights 2:15 Lucy discusses her origin story for becoming an artist 4:11 How art helped Lucy heal from depression 10:54 Lucy describes her style and how she discovered it 13:50 Techniques Lucy likes and when she likes to use them 16:50 Tips on being more expressive in painting 20:53 Why it takes courage to be creative 27:28 Why Lucy painted the Empress tarot card first 31:16 Lucy describes creative process 35:14 Lucy’s thoughts on when a painting is finished 37:56 Advice for anyone who wants to be an artist 40:32 Lucy’s highly shareable 46:50 The lightning round! The questions aired in this episode: What’s the most important part of your creative routine? What part of your creative process do you find most satisfying? When I’m hard on myself about my work I remind myself…? What is something that some might consider a curse that is actually a blessing to you? I needed to learn this to be where I am today? Do you believe in being creatively blocked? What do you do to unblock yourself? Lucy Chen Quotes Worth Remembering “Darkness just grows bigger and bigger inside until you can’t ignore it anymore… On the surface it seemed like I had a family, I could perform, do things, but mentally I was really not right… I really needed to look into myself and pay attention to myself.” “This process of painting self portraits was like if I was at the bottom of a well or the bottom of a pit, each self portrait was a step up the ladder that got me out of the pit.” “Probably all humans have the urge to create something rather than always consuming things.” “When I look at my painting I want a kind of positive feeling… even when I’m painting dark things… what I want to bring to my work is a sense of beauty and a light side even to the dark things.” “Do what you want to do and our style comes out eventually, it’s like handwriting.” “Painting yourself on the canvas is a way of saying that I deserve to be painted. I deserve to be made into a piece of art.” “People need courage to go in front of the mirror, look themselves in the eye in the mirror, and actually say I love you.” “It takes courage to try something different, to try to push your comfort zone a little bit.” “I told myself that this is going to be very different than what I have been doing, and I told myself I need to have the courage to try it, to do my best and see what happens, and it will help me grow.” “It’s a good thing that we feel nervous because we’re probably excited as well, and that takes us out of our comfort zones.” “Once you move out of your comfort zone the world grows a little bit bigger for you.” “Many women have blocks to receiving or resistance to receiving—receiving pleasure, receiving abundance. Things that seem to come to you easily or naturally, if you don’t have confidence you’re probably blocking it or repelling it, because to be able to receive the takes the belief that I deserve it, I am good enough, so I deserve this.” “Keep painting no matter what. Life might be difficult, things might come up and you feel like you can’t do it any more—you feel like other things are more important, more urgent—but you just have to bring yourself to keep creating, keep painting no matter what… And if you stop for days, weeks, don’t feel guilty about it. Whenever you remember, whenever you feel the urge to do, it just do it. Sometimes we just need to push through the resistances.” “The answer is probably already in us, but we need a tool to tap into our inner knowing.” Mentioned in This Episode Acrylic Paint Self Portraits Alla Prima Old Master Titian Henri Matisse– “Creativity takes courage.” Louise Hay– Mirror Work Tarot Deck EFT Tapping Empress Tarot Card Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom: A Tarot Journey to Self-Awareness by Rachel Pollok Paul Gardner “A painting is never finished it simply stops in interesting places.” Leonardo Da Vinci (biography) Melinda Cootsona Savvy Painter Podcast (share worthy) The Creative Tarot: A Modern Guide to an Inspired Life by Jessa Crispin (second share worthy) Meditation Connect with Lucy Website YouTube Instagram Facebook The post NCU Podcast #09: Lucy Chen on Painting Healing Depression, Courage as an Artist, and Freeing Yourself up for Expression appeared first on Next Creator Up.
54 minutes | Jun 24, 2019
NCU Podcast #008: Kori Celeste on Composing Music for Podcasts and Releasing the Pressure to Produce Perfect Work
It’s natural to feel pressure when you care about your work and someone has entrusted you and is depending on you to perform. But we rarely create good work when we’re operating under this kind of self-imposed stress. Kori Celeste knows this all too well, and was happy to share her thoughts on releasing the pressure. Kori is a composer, songwriter, singer, and music producer. She writes for nearly every medium imaginable including films, immersive experiences, and podcasts. Among other audio drama podcasts, she’s composed for Return Home and won an Audio Verse award for Best Original Music. In this episode we discuss her composing work, her creative process, and how breaks help her do her best work. Episode Highlights 4:07 The most helpful thing Kori learned when studying at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco 6:01 How she got involved in composing for podcasts 7:05 Kori’s process for writing the Return Hometheme 9:28 What draws her to the horror/comedy genre 13:18 Kori’s major influences 17:56 What helps her tap into her creative energy 22:56 How Kori looks at music differently since becoming a professional/how she deals with pressure when she has to deliver on a deadline 26:58 Kori discusses her experience starting her music career in LA and how she finds work as a freelance composer 34:00 What she’s found most challenging about being a professional composer 37:13 Advice for anyone who wants to be a composer 39:07 Kori’s highly shareable 44:36 The lightning round! The questions aired in this episode: What’s the most important part of your creative routine? How do you know when an idea is the right idea? What book or books have had the biggest impact on your life? What’s something you do to ignite your creativity? What part of your creative process do you find most satisfying? When the going gets tough, I… I get my best ideas when… When I’m hard on myself about my work, I remind myself… Do you believe in being creatively blocked? Kori Celeste Quotes Worth Remembering “The pressure that you put on yourself makes it so much more challenging than it needs to be because, honestly, the best way to go about writing music is to just enjoy the process.” “It’s all about being patient and allowing yourself the time to naturally get where you need to be. I think that the worst thing you can do is sit down and be like, ‘I have a deadline, I need to do this, I’m gonna write this right now.’ I think that always is just a recipe for disaster. I think it makes you start to resent the project and I think it just adds to the stress level.” “I think it’s just all about allowing yourself to get there and not putting pressure on yourself to get something done because if you do that, it’s not gonna be good. It’s never good when you feel a lot of anxiety about it.” “I think the most important thing is to trust yourself, trust the process, and it always ends up working out. As long as you put the work in, it always ends up working out.” “It’s all about allowing yourself to enjoy each project and enjoy each process that you have and take everything that you have as an experience. It’s really easy to get way too caught up in your own head.” “Whenever you get a chance, just write something, even if you’re only doing it for a a few minutes, just write as much as you can because that’s the only way you’re gonna get better is just forcing yourself to do it.” “I think the coolest thing right now is that we live in this world where people are just putting their creative content out there for everyone to listen to or everyone to see or everyone to watch, and it’s just so easy to make connections with people.” “I think just watching other people, hearing what they do and watching what they do, I think it just inherently makes you want to go make cool stuff too.” “Typically if it’s a good idea it just flows naturally.” Mentioned in The Interview Academy of Art University in San Francisco Audio Verse Award Return Home Uncanny County Beaches(movie) Catfish Tom Petty “The Waiting”by Tom Petty Ennio Morricone Mudcrutch The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel Who Framed Roger Rabbit film score Connect with Kori Website Instagram Twitter Sound Cloud The post NCU Podcast #008: Kori Celeste on Composing Music for Podcasts and Releasing the Pressure to Produce Perfect Work appeared first on Next Creator Up.
72 minutes | Jun 17, 2019
NCU Podcast #007: Alex Weber on the Importance of Sucking, Moving Past Doubt/Nerves, and His Experience as a Motivational Comedian/on American Ninja Warrior
Most people want to avoid sucking at all costs, and especially publicly. It’s terrifying to put yourself out there and open yourself up to judgment, especially when you’re new at something and full of self-doubt. But for motivational comedian and five-time TEDx speaker Alex Weber, sucking is a crucial part of the creative process—and he believes it would benefit all of us to adopt this same mindset. In his work as a motivational comedian and in his keynote speeches, Alex focuses heavily on how we can get past our fears and failures to do the things we want to do and lives the life we want to live. When he’s not doing comedy or motivating through public speaking, Alex devotes his energy to TV hosting, with credits on the Discovery Channel and FX. In this episode we discuss his impressive and unusual world record, how he went from host of American Ninja Warrior to a contestant on the show, his process for keynote speaking versus comedy, and his thoughts on nerves and moving past doubts. Episode Highlights 2:55 What inspired Alex to use comedy as a motivational tool 7:27 Alex talks about his pre-performance nerves and what helps him minimize his fears 10:32 Alex discusses some of his experience hosting American Ninja Warriors—why it excited him and made him feel whole, how it led him to competing in Season 11, why he believes sports are art, and what he’d do differently if he were to host the show now, after being on the show 17:35 How the experience of being on American Ninja Warriorchanged Alex’s perspective on performing/public speaking 21:15 Some effective strategies Alex uses to inspire peak performance, in himself and as a coach 25:55 The importance of sucking (part of Alex’s Ted talk) and what’s helped Alex push past the fear of judgment and allow himself to suck publicly 30:43 Alex explores what he’s learned about moving past doubt 33:40 The differences and similarities between a keynote speech and a comedy routine, and Alex’s creative process for each 39:29 How Alex maintains his positive mindset 42:12 What advice Alex wishes he’d heard when he was younger, and the best advice anyone’s ever given him 47:37 What inspired Alex to set the world record for the longest amount of time live video chatting and what he learned from fourteen days of non-stop connection 55.48 Alex’s advice for anyone who wants to be the next creator up in his field 1:05:24 The lightning round! The questions aired in this episode: What’s the most important part of your creative routine? How do you think you differ from other creative people in your line of work? How do you think one can expand one’s creative mind and abilities? How do you know when an idea is the right idea? What is the most helpful thing you’ve learned or useful skill you’ve developed in your career? What’s something you do to ignite your creativity or get into a creative zone? When I’m feeling unmotivated it helps me to… I get my best ideas when… When I’m hard on myself about my work, I remind myself… Has anyone ever given you any words of inspiration that you would like to pass along to others? Alex Weber Quotes Worth Remembering “Being able to enjoy the process and being able to smile is not frosting on a cake but actually a really impactful way of reaching our goals.” “Any time we care about something we’re going to have nerves.” “Nerves serve a great purpose. It’s energy… it will wake you up. It will make us alert and get us rocking. So I think if we can use the nerves it’s a really powerful tool. It’s just to not let them grab the steering wheel.” “If there are things in our life where we can control a lot of the variables, preparation cures nerves, and if we can prepare, it will really silence all the other crap that’s thrown our way.” “Once we honestly identify what matters to us, really brutally honestly, and then find out why it’s important to us, then we can figure out how to make that a reality. But it’s really taking that inventory of what I want to do and why do I want to do it as the first really impactful step.” “Whatever we want to do, there’s this thing guarding it, and it bats us away. Whether you want to call that fear or failures or doubts or nerves or practicality, it keeps batting us away. And if we don’t really want to keep going, we’re not. But if we really care about the thing it does not matter how many times we get batted away. We’re gonna be relentless with it and we’re gonna make it through. So I think having that really powerful want is critical.” “Over a million people have watched me fail at things. There was no chance of dipping my toe in the water with it. It was being shoved into the deepest of ends of just failing repeatedly, repeatedly, repeatedly. But the gift of it was that I got over it. I got over caring about failing.” “Sometimes those thresholds of the pain can be so impactful for us that it’s an easier route to simply stop doing it. But I think that the more we build up our tolerance to those painful moments, the more freeing it is because we learn that they’re not real, and they’re that we can totally progress past.” “I don’t believe that those fears ever end, and I don’t believe that failures ever end, but what I do believe is that our ability to move past them grows. And that’s where there’s freedom, that’s where there’s a lot of improvement, and that’s where there’s a lot of growth…” “Doubt is holding us to a perfect outcome. And anything short of us beginning and immediately reaching success at an A+, 100 % success is crushing. It doesn’t support us in doing what we want to do and it’s often an irrational voice. It’s often our voice of insecurity and playing out a worst-case scenario.” “I don’t think it has to be more complex than that: It’s focusing on what’s in our control, it’s believing in ourselves, and then taking positive action to do it.” “…sometimes the greatest gift is if someone can just nudge us a little or maybe even pick up our head a little bit to question something, or re-evaluate something, or maybe make a slightly different choice.” “People have asked if I’m positive all the time, and I’m not. I have down moments, I have negative moments, I have moments of questioning. But I really do think ultimately it’s a choice of what route we want to take… We can note and feel that things are negative or be aware that they’re imposing or daunting or crappy but still choose positivity as our approach to moving forward.” “One thing that I wish I could continually offer is to just to not fear asking ourselves: Is this really what I want to do? Is this really who I want to be?” “Creation takes time. Invariably there are gonna be tough moments… and what I’m learning more and more is just to enjoy the experience, because if all we’re caring about is getting to that mountain peak, we’re gonna get there, but then we’re gonna look and there’s a bigger mountain. And if we’re not enjoying the climb and not enjoying getting to that peak, it’s gonna feel empty.” “There is a finish line that gets 100% of people, and if we keep trying to get through everything, we’re gonna get to that finish line without really enjoying our time here.” “Say it aloud—‘I want to do this’—and then figure out a step one. Figure out a way to start, and go in with the expectation of, as long as I show up, I have nailed it. Separate from any result, separate from any expectation, and simply set the goal that I’m gonna show and I’m gonna do this, and that is such a win. And then we’ll get all the info of how it actually went and what we can do better, but whatever it is you want to do, fricken start doing it.” “Everything’s a process. Baby steps, baby steps, baby steps. Lay down bricks then take a step back and that’s a damn cool house.” Mentioned in Episode Comedy Store Laugh Factory University of Pennsylvania Lacrosse Jerry Seinfeld American Ninja Warrior TedX Rob Moore The Big Leap: Conquer Your Hidden Fear and Take Life to the Next Level(share worthy) Connect with Alex Website Twitter Facebook Instagram The post NCU Podcast #007: Alex Weber on the Importance of Sucking, Moving Past Doubt/Nerves, and His Experience as a Motivational Comedian/on American Ninja Warrior appeared first on Next Creator Up.
66 minutes | Jun 10, 2019
NCU Podcast #006: Noah Knox Marshall on his Non-dystopian Sci-Fi Book Series and Building a Better World Through Story
Most of us want to not only express ourselves creatively but also make a positive impact on the people around us. We want our work to not only entertain but also make a difference. This is what motivates Noah Knox Marshall, and it’s why his work is so inspiring. An established film, television, and video game writer, Noah has recently devoted his time to a nine-book non-dystopian sci-fi series that paints a hopeful picture of the future—a future where mankind is compassionate and driven by the desire to help all of life, on our planet and beyond. In this episode, he discusses his adventures screenwriting in Hollywood; what’s helped him become a stronger writer; his series, Dax Zander, Sea Patrol; and how he’s helping make math and science cool for kids again so they can help create a better world. Episode Highlights 2:33 How Noah got into writing in Hollywood 4:12 Noah shares a story of a Hollywood pitch gone bad and what helped him discover what he’s good at/what work he wanted to do 11:13 What’s helped Noah become a better writer 12:55 The best money Noah has ever spent as a writer 15:17 What inspired Noah’s hope-filled, non-dystopian young adult sci-fi book series, Dax Zander, Sea Patrol 24:21 Why Noah decided to take on a nine-book series as his first undertaking in novel writing 27:51 Noah shares who he tries to emulate with his storytelling, and why 30:51 Noah shares the most difficult scene he wrote in his Dax Zander series 36:29 How screenplay writing differs from book writing 42:03 Noah shares why he’s declined to sell the film rights for Dax Zander 44:18 Noah discusses how his partnership with Purdue Agile Strategy Lab is helping make math and science cool for kids 49:27 The most difficult part of Noah’s artistic process 53:07 Noah’s advice for anyone who wants to be a better writer 59:54 The lightning round! The questions aired in this episode: What’s the most important part of your creative routine? What’s something you do to ignite your creativity? What part of your creative process do you find most satisfying? When the going gets tough I _______? I get my best ideas when… When I’m hard on myself about my work, I remind myself… I needed to learn _______ to be where I am today Do you believe in being creatively blocked? Noah Knox Marshall Quotes Worth Remembering “At a certain point it was just this lovely little light bulb that went off and went, you know what, this is where I should spend more time thinking because I’m happy here, and if I’m happy in this place I will create better work.” “You have to develop a general dissatisfaction with your current state of craft so that you read better writers and you keep reminding yourself that you are far from that place and that there is always room for improvement.” “Everything was always, the aliens are gonna come and kill us. Except for ET, they’re usually gonna kill us or hurt is or infect us or take us over as pod people or whatever. And suddenly this thought hit me: We go there to protect them. We go there to save their lives. That’s why were patrolling their oceans—because they’re in danger. And it just exploded. I thought holy cow, that makes humanity the good guys again, we actually do something compassionate and wonderful. As a race, we up our game. When that idea hit me, it was like, holy cow, this is a whole other thing. It could be really special.” “A good idea feeds itself. That’s how you know it’s something you should keep pursuing because it’s like a seed that keeps self-germinating.” “It was very daunting and very scary. And the very fact that it was scary that I knew I should do it.” “This is transient and passing. Fear doesn’t last, it’s something you live through and will encounter, but it doesn’t defeat you.” “I think a lot of prejudice is based in ignorance—and willful ignorance—that we don’t test, that we don’t challenge. “Fear is not what drives my writing, but it is a great catalyst to becoming stronger, to testing yourself, and laying the foundations for hope.” “Exposing our faults and living in those places, that’s what makes real characters.” “Dystopia sells because it’s sensationalistic and painful, but on almost every metric the world is in a better place than it was 100 years ago. Almost every metric. And for every crisis of the environment or energy or medicine or health that you can name there are probably a dozen different fairly well funded groups working on solutions. People are living longer around the planet, there’s less poverty around the planet, there’s less starvation, there’s more prosperity. These things don’t sell in the media, but there are people who are taking responsibility for making a better future. And imagine what we could do if we started emphasizing those people and lauding those people and giving more awards to teachers and scientists instead of the Grammy’s, the Oscars. Those are great. We need those for our spiritual and cultural enlightenment. But we need to celebrate people that are coming up with these solutions and making them the superheroes so that kids start putting on their super suits and getting ready to step into their place to build the future that is already in construction.” “Every artist goes through crises of self-doubt, and the way through is to simply knuckle down and work.” “Not everybody will like what I’m working on or create, and that’s okay.” “Discipline breeds opportunity. You just have to not walk away when you’re confronted with writer’s block. You just have to plow through somehow.” Mentioned in the Interview USC Graduate Film School Program Marty Baum Creative Artists Agency Merck 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea Sea Quest Epcot Center The Living Seas at Epcot Center KDP Rocket by Dave Chessen (Amazon Marketing) George Washington Carver Johnny Quest Disney TV Animation ET Cartoon Network Warner Brothers Aquaman Imagi Animation Studios Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury Snow White Pinocchio Joel Silver Legend of Zelda Nintendo Purdue Agile Strategy Lab Tomorrowland (Brad Bird film, Noah’s shareworthy) Connect with Noah Noah’s book (Dax Zander) site Agile Strategy Lab Twitter Facebook The post NCU Podcast #006: Noah Knox Marshall on his Non-dystopian Sci-Fi Book Series and Building a Better World Through Story appeared first on Next Creator Up.
39 minutes | Jun 3, 2019
NCU Podcast #005: Jeff Heimbuch on Producing a Comedy Horror Podcast and the Most Important Lesson from a Disney Imagineer Rebel
There are a lot of podcasts out there—hundreds of thousands, in numerous genres. It can be difficult to decide which to give a try on your many commutes to and from the office or nights away from Netflix. If you’re a horror fan, I’ll save you a little time: Jeff Heimbuch’s serialized comedy horror podcast, Return Home, is not to be missed. Return Home follows a man who comes back to his hometown to unravel its mysteries after an unknown entity calls to him. Done in the style of radio shows of ages past, Return Home has won several audio drama awards, including Best Actor in an Original Leading Role, Best Theme Music, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Supporting Actress. A creative jack-of-all-trades, Jeff Heimbuch is also a filmmaker and writer whose work you can find on Horrorbuzz.com. In this episode, we discuss Jeff’s process for producing Return Home, as well as his book about the Disney Imagineer rebel Rolly Crump, the pioneer behind such iconic attractions such as “It’s a Small World,” “The Enchanted Tiki Room,” and “The Haunted Mansion.” Episode Highlights 2:18 Jeff discusses why he always juggles multiple projects at once 5:37 How Jeff’s serliazed comedy horror podcast Return Home came to be and why he decided against writing this story as a novel or short story 7:42 The toughest decision Jeff has had to make with his podcast 10:00 Jeff walks us through the writing and recording process for his podcast Return Homeand discusses the hardest episode to produce thus far 15:09 Jeff’s first scare, and what he finds enjoyable about horror 17:36 Why Jeff became a Disney superfan and ultimately launched a Disney podcast 19:30 Jeff discusses his book It’s Kind of a Cute Story; Rolly Crump,“the bad boy of the original Disney Imagineers,” and what he’s learned from Rolly about the creative process 25:23 Jeff shares what’s influenced him creatively and the benefits of podcasting over filmmaking 27:28 Jeff’s advice for anyone who wants to be a narrative podcast producer 28:14 Jeff’s highly shareables 31:22 The lightning round! The questions aired in this episode: What’s the most important part of your creative routine? How do you know when an idea is the right idea? What’s something you do to ignite your creativity? When the going gets tough, I… I get my best ideas when… I’m inspired by… When I’m hard on myself about my work, I remind myself… I needed to learn _______ to be where I am today Do you believe in being creatively blocked Jeff Heimbuch Quotes Worth Remembering “I think that’s a very good way to live your life—learn the things that you are interested in and do it, even if not for anyone else, even for yourself, just learn it and do it.” “Don’t get discouraged by anything that may pop up. Don’t get discouraged by any of the hardships there are. Just go out and try to create the thing that you want to create because there’s no wrong way to create it. You’re the storyteller, you’re the person behind it, and whatever it is, it’s going to be your vision, so don’t get discouraged by anything or anyone else telling you otherwise.” “The more I sit and stare at something and I hate it, I almost will myself to make it better and I wind up changing a million different things before I sit down and start the creation process.” “When you’re three years into it, it still might not be the right idea, but you’re enjoying yourself, so who cares if it’s right or wrong?” Mentioned in This Episode Chapman University We’re Alive (zombie podcast) Herbert West: Re-Animator (horror story by H.P. Lovecraft, watch on Amazon here) Kori Celeste (composer for Return Home) Episode 7 with the Jersey Devil (hardest to produce thus far) Horror buzz Halloween original film and franchise (on Amazon here) Norman Gidney, Horror Buzz Six Flag Great Adventure in New Jersey Six Flags Fright Fest Scare Zone Haunted Mansion Disneyland Tiki Room Disneyland People Mover It’s Kind of a Cute Story (book) Rolly Cump (early Disney designer) Imagineers Walt Disney “Home At Last” (first episode of Return Homepodcast) Uncanny County (podcast) Rose Drive (podcast) Tunnels (podcast) The Stand by Steven King David Bowie Labyrinthsoundtrack The Alone Experience Connect with Jeff Bamfer Productions Twitter Instagram YouTube The post NCU Podcast #005: Jeff Heimbuch on Producing a Comedy Horror Podcast and the Most Important Lesson from a Disney Imagineer Rebel appeared first on Next Creator Up.
77 minutes | May 27, 2019
NCU Podcast #004: Sarah Potenza on Proving the Naysayers Wrong, Using Her Scars for Her Art, and Her Experience on The Voice
**This episode contains explicit language.** As artists, we’re naturally sensitive people and can be easily influenced by the people around us. We can take their criticisms to heart and assume we can go no further than they believe is possible. But we can. Sarah Potenza is living proof. Sarah is a singer/songwriter out of Nashville who has a bold personality and a larger than life voice. Rolling Stone remarked that she is to blues what Adele is to pop. You may have seen her live at iconic venues such as the Blue Bird Café and the Grand Old Opry, or on the eighth season of The Voice, where she got a four-chair turn and performed for over 12 million people. In this episode, Sarah discusses the bullies and naysayers who tried to silence her, how she overcome their shaming and developed confidence in her talent and her body, and what she learned and gained from her experience on The Voice. She also shares a little about her new album Road to Rome, and what inspired her powerful track “I Work for Me.” Episode Highlights 1:50 What helped Sarah free her spirit so she could make the music she wanted to make, which ultimately boosted her self-esteem and helped her embrace her body and personality 7:02 Sarah discusses the origins of her empowering song “I Work for Me” and what inspired it—the bullies and naysayers who put her down as a musician and shamed her for her appearance. 13:34 Sarah shares her experience battling on The Voice and why her scars are powerful. 16:38 How confidence can intimidate people who don’t love themselves, and why; and how women often undervalue themselves and think they don’t deserve as much as men 23:49 Sarah talks about the importance of genuine inspiration when writing powerful, authentic songs; how songs start for her; and why she’s learned to not be attached to lyrics writing. 31:19 How Bethenny Frankel (of The Real Housewives) influenced Sarah’s song “The Road to Rome” and why there are no mistakes 35:44 What causes Sarah self-doubt, in spite of her hard-earned confidence 42:13 Sarah details her favorite pre-performance routine. 45:50 Sarah explores the struggles of working with her husband on her latest album. 54:55 Sarah talks about her experience on The Voice—the friendships she made, what she learned, why fear led her to choose Blake Shelton as her mentor, and who she actually wanted to choose. 1:02:15 How The Voice has opened doors for her Sarah 1:04:28 The advice Sarah would offer to anyone who wants to be a songwriter or musician 1:06:48 Sarah’s highly shareable 1:07:50 The lightning round! The questions aired in this episode: What’s the most important part of your creative routine? How do you think you differ from other creative people in your genre? How do you think one can expand one’s creative mind and abilities? How do you know when an idea is the right idea? What is something you do to get into a creative zone? When I’m feeling unmotivated, it helps me to _______? What do you do when you feel creatively blocked? Has anyone ever given you any words of inspiration that you’d like to pass along to others? Sarah Potenza Quotes Worth Remembering “I remember being told not to take $10,000 and make an album, but to invest in a house or car or to go to college, even though I didn’t want to go to college. I remember being told ‘Oh, so you think you’re just gonna move to Chicago and have a career as a singer? So you’re the one—you’re gonna make it?’ And all those feelings kind of weighed upon me and lurked there in the back of my mind for a really long time. And I finally had this revelation that none of those things are about me. They’re all about the other person, the person that’s saying them, and their own personal struggle with their fear of failure and their fear of success.” “And so all I have to do is just be myself and show people my scars, and show people my life and the truth and the things that have hurt me and the things that haunt me and the things that still bother me and the things that I’ve gotten over, because everyone has those moments in their lives. And when you’re performing and somebody recognizes what you’re saying and they think ‘Oh my god, how did she know that I felt that way? How does this resonate with me so much?” At the same time that they’re feeling understood, they’re understanding me, which is why they feel understood, and so I feel understood. And that magic is something that is more powerful than anything out there.” “I think that confidence scares people who don’t love themselves… If you don’t love yourself you’re always going to feel jealous and weird about what other people have. And now that I’ve finally come to truly love myself I feel like I just can’t be shaken.” “It wouldn’t matter if I’m rapping, it doesn’t matter if I’m singing a country song, it doesn’t matter if I’m in a musical, without the key ingredient of the muse—and not a specific muse, it could be any muse, whatever is inspiring me at the time—if I do not respect that and I don’t follow that, there’s nothing. I just don’t do good work.” “We get into these things in our heads where we’re like, oh I have to know everything, I’m making mistakes, I’m wasting time, I’m falling behind. And all that stuff leads to this toxic buildup of more wasted time and more delays and more self-doubt.” “I hope I always stay hungry and I always stay thirsty. Because I love being creative, and I think there’s a lot of drive that comes from that.” “Performance for me is so much love but also so much anger. There’s so much passion on the stage in everything I’m doing that it just gets all of that out of my system. I scream it out, I sweat it out, I cry it out, I sing it out, I shout it out. It’s all out there whether it’s the love, the joy, the hate, the anger, the peace, the sorrow, everything. And I just throw it up all over everything, and I feel sated.” “Decisions based on fear are always the wrong decision, so I decided to never make a decision based on fear again.” “When I’m feeling unmotivated, that’s fine as long as when I’m feeling motivated I work and I empty that out until I feel unmotivated again. It’s not about forcing yourself to be motivated. When I’m feeling unmotivated it’s like if my cell phone is on low I got to put it on the charger and just leave it on there, so that’s what I gotta do sometimes. Quotes Sarah Mentions in the Episode “Your scars are more powerful than the swords that have caused them.” ~Passage from unidentified book Mentioned in This Episode The Rock Boat Sixth Man Sessions at Sea Justin Wiseman Tess Holliday The Voice 2015 “I Work for Me” (song) Bethenny Frankel Melissa Etheridge Lady Gaga Wilco Nels Cline Bill Frisell Father John Misty Elliot Smith Tanya Boyd Cannon Blake Shelton Adam Levine Pharell Four Chair Turn Sarahs’s Kickstarter Shrill (book) Shrill (show on Hulu—Sarah’s shareworthy) Connect with Sarah Website Twitter Instagram Facebook The post NCU Podcast #004: Sarah Potenza on Proving the Naysayers Wrong, Using Her Scars for Her Art, and Her Experience on The Voice appeared first on Next Creator Up.
67 minutes | May 20, 2019
NCU Podcast #003 – Paul Jarvis on Creativity, Staying Small in Business, and Defining Success for Yourself
Conventional wisdom tells us bigger is better, and that we’d all be happier if we had more—more growth, more followers, more customers, more money, more of everything society associates with “success.” But what if we could do what we love, on our own terms, and make solid money, while remaining small? What if we could focus more on what we want to create and spend less time worrying about building a big business? In this interview writer and designer Paul Jarvis shares a little from his two decades of running his own (very) small business, the key lessons he included in his recent book Company of One, and his assorted insights on creativity and success. Paul has worked with professional athletes like Steve Nash and Shaquille O’Neal, corporate giants like Microsoft and Mercedes Benz, and entrepreneurs with online empires like Danielle LaPorte and Maria Forleo. He currently teaches popular online courses, hosts several podcasts, and develops small but mighty software solutions. Episode Highlights: 2:56 Paul shares a little about his Business Insider article “Here’s How to Master Your Life in 19 Difficult Steps,” speaking to these three ideas: Be foolish and stupid as often as possible (the right amount of risk smart entrepreneurs take) Everyone is weird, awkward, and different (a defining moment in his writing career involving his pet rats; why your work doesn’t need to appeal to everyone) Expectations are inversely related to a sense of accomplishment (how to let go of expectations when you have a lot of hope wrapped up in your goal, and how to find accomplishment in simply moving forward, regardless of the outcome) 20:37 Why Paul decided to write his book Company of One now 23:02 Paul discusses the trappings of more when it comes to business and how businesses often fail because they grow too quickly 28:55 Paul explores the three simple rules the define the company of one model: Start small Define growth Keep learning 35:36 Paul shares a couple powerful stories from his book and challenges the version of success the media feeds us 45:58 Paul talks about introversion—how you can push yourself outside your comfort zone, pick the right opportunities so you don’t exhaust yourself, what helps when you don’t feel like “peopling” today—and how to recognize the difference between fear-based decisions and decisions based on what makes sense for you individually 53:38 Paul discusses the idea that creativity thrives on constraints, and which constraints he’s placed on his own work to boost his creativity 57:10 Paul’s advice for anyone who wants to be the next creator up in his field—beyond “start small, define growth, and keep learning.” 59:29 Lightning round questions included in the episode: What is the most important part of your creative routine? How do you know when an Idea is the right idea? What is something you do to ignite your creativity? What part of the creative process do you find most satisfying? (Click here to subscribe for unaired lightning round Q&A!) Paul Jarvis Quotes Worth Remembering “Most of my life is going against the advice of others and doing things anyways.” “Almost anything where you make strides to do better or be better, it’s mostly unknowns. You don’t know what’s going to work and what’s not going to work until you try it.” “I think a lot of people think that entrepreneurs are inherently risky, where all of the ones that I know that do well are only risky to a point. They’re willing to take small risks or iterative risks, but they’re not willing to bet the farm.” “Your creative work doesn’t need to appeal to everyone. Not everyone needs to get it. It’s okay if you’re weird, because you’ll attract the kind of other weird person that enjoys it and that understands it and that gets it and that then will support you. It’s hard to make work that resonates with everybody, and I think that it would be very painful to exist if that’s what you were trying to accomplish.” “For the longest time I thought I had to hide my personality, especially in business because I’ve got to be professional. But I feel like professionalism, it’s really a mask.” “I don’t know how to be present enough to be creative if my expectation is that it has to do well or even that’s it’s going to do well… unless I’m present in the work, unless I’m present in the process, it’s not going to work out. And we control so little of the outcome anyways.” “I don’t know any writer, or any creative, that has an easy time creating all the time because it’s hard work. That’s why not everybody does it. That’s why it’s a valuable skill to foster—our own innate creativity—because it’s tough.” “Minimalism is the pursuit of defining enough.” “We live in a consumer world, and that’s kind of pushed down our throats, where we always need newer, better, faster, but I don’t think we actually need those things. We would all be so happy and content in our lives if those things made us happy.” “If you’re profitable and you’re covering what you need, do you need more? Do you need to keep focusing on acquisition? Or should you focus on retention?” “The first time we launch we’re guessing on most things. We’re guessing at how it’s going to be adopted, who’s going to like it, if the positioning is right, if it solves a problem, because all businesses need to solve a problem for money. And so if we start small, we can get something out faster, learn a great deal, and then refine. And then launch again. And then refine.” “We want growth in the beginning because it’s required, and then we want growth later because it feeds our ego or it feeds our social standing or it feeds our peer comparison.” “We can’t stop learning. That’s one area where I think that growth is valuable forever.” “The story we’re told in the media is that success looks a certain way, successful people look and act a certain way, and if you want to be successful you have to make all of these concessions in your life. And I think that that’s bullsh*t.” “If you’re chasing someone else’s version of success at best you’ll end up with their life, and you better hope you like it. At worst, you’re gonna feel like you failed if you do fail at achieving someone else’s version of success—but you just failed at achieving something you didn’t really want.” “Every opportunity has an obligation attached on the backend. And so I think it’s our job as creative people or introverts or whatever, it’s our job to determine what opportunities makes sense.” “I think if we make decisions based on fear we’re never going to get anywhere. Because at least for me, I’m afraid of basically everything, so if just I said no to things I was afraid of I’d say no to everything, and I wouldn’t have any kind of career. But I know that I can exist in fear and take action in spite of the fear.” “If we don’t set boundaries, other people are going to set them for us, and then we just have to hopefully be happy with where those lines are in the sand.” Quotes Paul Jarvis Mentions “We are only entitled to the work, not the fruit of the work.” ~Bhagavad Gita, interpretation “Less is better.” ~Dieter Rams Mentioned in This Episode Business Insider Article, “Here’s How to Master Your Life in 19 Difficult Steps” Paul’s Rat People blog post Paul’s Sunday Dispatch newsletter Paul’s article “I Don’t Care About Growth” Greg McKeown’s book Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less Tim Ferris’ book The 4-Hour Workweek Michael Pollen’s eat food methodology (explored in his book In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto) Tom Fishburn and his work as a cartoonist We Are Bob, Sci-Fi trilogy (Paul’s highly shareable) Software founders book club current reads: Dark Matter and The Gone World (More books shared in the lightning round—subscribe here to get his recommendations!) Connect with Paul Paul’s site His book, Company of One: Why Staying Small Is the Next Big Thing for Business The post NCU Podcast #003 – Paul Jarvis on Creativity, Staying Small in Business, and Defining Success for Yourself appeared first on Next Creator Up.
47 minutes | May 13, 2019
NCU Podcast #002 – Melissa Center on the Sacrifices and Challenges of an Artist’s Life and Producing Your Own Film Projects
The artist’s life is full of challenges—there’s no denying that. It’s not an easy path, which is why many don’t choose it. But if you’re a deeply emotional person who’s profoundly affected by the world and people around you, there’s nothing more fulfilling than having a creative outlet for your feelings and reflections. In this interview, I speak with actress and filmmaker Melissa Center to explore her films, the sacrifices she’s made for her dreams, and why she believes they were worth it. Melissa is a passionate LA-based creator with roots in Chicago and New York City. Her TV credits include Grey’s Anatomy, Grimm, True Detective, and Masters of Sex. Her debut feature film, All I Want, for which she was a producer, co-writer, and leading actress, premiered at Dances with Films Festival and screened at the Kew Gardens Festival of Cinema. Her short film R. V., for which she was writer, producer, co-director, and leading actress, played at numerous festivals, including Kew Gardens Festival of Cinema, where it won for Best Makeup/FX, and Chain NYC, where she won for best actress. Episode Highlights 2:35 What inspired Melissa to become an actress and filmmaker and how her choices have given her more control over her creative path 5:02 What Melissa’s had to sacrifice to work in film, what she feels she’s gained, and why she doesn’t regret choosing the path of an artist 10:20 What inspired Melissa’s ensemble movie All I Want, which she was able to film with a large group of acting peers, on a limited budget 19:08 What the beginning stages look like when Melissa starts a new project 22:37 What helps Melissa move forward when she feels stuck or creatively blocked, and how it’s benefited her to work with a creative partner 24:18 What it was like taking her short film, RV, to festivals, including the Sidewalk Film Festival in Birmingham, Alabama, and her plan for this mission-driven short going forward 33:46 What Melissa would do differently if she were starting in the industry all over again 36:31 Melissa’s two documentary recommendations and why they spoke to her 42:37 The lightning round questions: I get my best ideas when _______ I can’t do my best work without _______ How do you invite your creativity to come out and play? What creatively inspires you? Melissa Center Quotes Worth Remembering “I think what happens is you pursue this thing, and it’s not a straight path, and there’s no guidebook, so you’re completely shooting in the dark. And you’re guessing every step of the way and you’re dealing with complete uncertainty, and so you have to just keep throwing sh*t to the wall and see what sticks.” “I get to choose my life, and that’s hugely liberating, and I’m a type of person that always needs a challenge. And so you get what you ask for. And so that’s a blessing. And I think there’s magic along the way when you’re doing this. The give and take process of what we do is such a beautiful thing, and the collaboration aspect is such a beautiful thing.” “A lot of people take the safe route, but then they feel sad inside. I did not take the safe route. Sometimes I still feel sad inside… but I feel like I have agency over my life. And that is an important thing.” “With how prevalent Facebook and Instagram and all the social media stuff is, everyone sees this rosy side of life, and I think it can be very lonely and alienating for people who are having challenges. And so I thought if I can make this come to life and share it, then hopefully other people who are questioning the same things and trying to sort it out for themselves, they won’t feel so alone.” “Some writers, for example, you get up, you write every day, and that’s your process, and you just write and write and write. For me, it’s more of a spazzy affair. I’ll get infected by some sort of thing or idea and I just need to barf it out somehow.” “I’m a very emotional actor and emotional person, as you might have gauged. But I think if something really affects me on a strong emotional level, it needs to take shape, to take form.” “Every experience that you have is why you are where you’re at in a way.” “No one gets where they are by themselves, not at all.” Links to Festivals and Movies Melissa Mentioned Sidewalk Film Festival E.T. the Extra Terrestrial Share Worthy Rodents of an Unusual Size (documentary) Three Identical Strangers, (documentary) Connect with Melissa IMDB page Website Facebook Instagram Twitter Melissa’s Films RV (short film) All I Want (feature film) The post NCU Podcast #002 – Melissa Center on the Sacrifices and Challenges of an Artist’s Life and Producing Your Own Film Projects appeared first on Next Creator Up.
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