Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Camera Shy

I was recently approached to do an advertorial for a positive parenting experience involving Aiden and me. However, that is not the subject of this post.

As part of the advertorial, our family was invited to meet the video production crew. I was assuming that it would be the same as any other meets - talk, chat, shake your hand on it and leave. Imagine my surprise when we arrived, and was informed that the crew wanted to have a pre-shoot with Aiden and me! It would be sort of a get-to-know-you session between them and me, plus a familiarization shoot for Aiden so that he gets to know the crew in preparation for the actual filming.

Similar to any meetings, there was an exchange of business cards at the start; and when I read the card that was given to me by the director of the shoot – I was floored!! I may not recognize his face but I certainly recognized the name.

If you are a big fan of Malay movies with beautiful cinematography and sound storyline, you would know the name Kabir Bhatia. He is extremely talented! I loved his movies, such as Cinta and Sepi. Hubby and I also secretly enjoyed Nur Kasih, it was our weekly guilty pleasure at home. So having Kabir Bhatia at the meet, and having him suggest a pre-shoot cum interview with him, was.... such an experience!

I look soooo engrossed with my "interview" - eyes closed and all! *cheeky grin* Thanks for the fabulous picture, Hubby!
We started with my pre-shoot - I was asked to sit in front of a camera and answer questions from Kabir Bhatia, which revolved around introducing myself, my relationship with my kids and my daily life with them. During the shoot, Hubby, Aiden and Ian were separated from me, probably so that Aiden doesn't hear my responses as they wanted organic uninfluenced responses from him come his turn. It was quite a long interview, I didn't look at the clock but I believe I was interviewed close to an hour?

Next up was Aiden... this time it was my turn to be separated from him, while Hubby accompanied Aiden in front of the camera. I know for a fact that Aiden is camera shy - he doesn't have a problem sitting in front of the camera; but opening up and answering questions from total strangers are definitely not his forte. When questioned, he would usually look at me for help, or shrug his shoulders and say "I don't know".

Aiden looks so focused here!

Initially, I tiptoed up for a sneak peek, but as soon as Aiden saw me he clammed up and started to squirm left, right and center. Needless to say, I was politely asked to keep away from the area and was led to a quiet conference room, with Ian in tow.

Kabir Bhatia smiling at my attempt to sneak a quick look at Aiden.

Aiden warming up to the crew.

At the end of the interview, I anxiously asked Hubby how Aiden did. Despite a lot of squirming around, slumping on the chair and swinging his legs, they got quite a few funny moments from the shoot. He told Kabir Bhatia that his favourite past time with his friends is to play chess (Kabir was so surprised, he came forward to shake Aiden's hand and proclaimed him a genius!), he showed off his golf swing to the crew, he confessed that he didn't like numbers (despite my earlier declaration about his love for mathematics), he conveyed how he is not allowed to have cats at home because they would eat his rabbits... and since kids are honest and all that - I'm pretty sure he told the whole crew about the fact that his Mummy never cooks at home!

I wonder how child talents - the one you always see on TV, are so outgoing and confident? Is it part of their born personality, or is it a learned trait from their upbringing? Yes, Aiden is a social butterfly when it comes to making friends with peers his age - but it is always so hard to convince him to walk up to an adult - such as to ask a waiter to come to our table, or to say hello to an acquaintance of mine. I remember when I was small, my local KFC had this take away side window by their restaurant; and my mum used to force me to walk up to the window, order, pay and pick up our take away order. I was so small that sometimes people do not even think that I was queuing up and they would cut in front of me. The take away window was also quite high above ground so I had to tiptoe so that the KFC lady could see me. I know now, that my mum made me do all these to cultivate confidence in me. Unfortunately, no matter how hard I pressure Aiden into doing similar things, such as walking up alone to a clown to ask for a sculpture balloon... he simply wouldn't budge! Should I then be tougher and persist?

Anyway, the video pre-shoot was certainly a priceless experience for Aiden, and I sincerely hope that this exposure would teach him to be less camera shy. If you have any tips for me to help Aiden warm up and open up to the crew, please... do share!

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