Weekend Inspiration – Fake Fight

This weekend I want you to start a fight. Not a real one if you can manage it. A fake fight. Us humans may have invented the internet, space travel, and the ice cream sandwich, but that doesn’t mean we don’t still have lizard brains. Our ear holes catch the heightened tone of a distant argument. It sounds like there is going to be a fight. The adrenal gland starts pumping action juice whether we want it to or not. We jump to our feet and skitter over to investigate. We are drawn to fights like a moth to a flame, like a baby to the booby, like the tone deaf to the Black Eyed Peas – Switch Up!

When you set up your fake fight, keep in mind that just because it’s a still image doesn’t mean it has to be a physical fight. Yelling, struggling, weeping. They all work even in a frozen soundless image. Try to get at least two people. Three is even better. Give them opposing goals and set them loose. Example: tell model #1 they have to get out of the room they are in because their dog is trapped in his dog house and it’s on fire! Then tell model #2 they can’t let model #1 leave the room because if they do, model #1 is going to eat model #2’s dog! You know, something your models and can identify with. If you have a third person, great! The third person gets to take one of the opposing people’s side of the fight. That throws the volume up to eleven. If your wife ever tried to convince you to get a dog even though you thought it was too soon after the horrific dog house fire indecent with your beloved pooch – may he R.I.P. – which was followed up by her eating said pet, then you know how much the pressure goes up once she tricks your son into taking her side!

Don’t worry too much about explaining the back story to your audience. In fact, it doesn’t mater if your audience knows what the fight is about at all. You just want them to feel the tension, smell the spinal fluid. That’s what’s going to make the image grab people and suck them in. They can make up the back story based on their own torrid past. Let them.

What’s that? You’re too busy this weekend to develop your craft? Or maybe you think this is a dumb idea. Well, them’s fighting words, ugly!


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