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GUEST POST BY EMMA J: On Nudity

March 30, 2012

Hey, Green Roomers! Please welcome to the blog today, Emma J! Emma is a model and actor who has worked in London, Miami, and New York. You may have seen her work Off-Broadway, on Law & Order, or in a Three Olives Vodka commercial! Be sure to check out her blog HERE when you’re finished reading what she has to say here!

GUEST BLOG BY EMMA J — On Nudity

Remember, you use yourself to act, but the character is not you; the character comes through you -Larry Moss.

I made sure to communicate clearly before signing with my agent that I am committed to my craft and therefore comfortable if the role requires nudity. My agent still asks, to double check, before submitting me for a role if some form of nudity is required. Infact just last week my booker made sure before submitting me for a feature film. Modeling has been my springboard into acting. It has prepared me in ways I never imagined it could. Modeling, like acting, requires you to be comfortable within your own skin and understand your type. While shooting an industrial for Royal Caribbean in the Bahamas I got to explore a character and fell in love with the process.

I had my first taste of being in front of the camera at age 7, while modeling a school uniform campaign for a British superstore called Tesco. I distinctly remember I had to hold hands with the boy that I was shooting with. I reached out to hold his hand and had to wait patiently before he held mine in return. I often smile to myself when recalling this memory as it reminds me how comfortable I’ve always been in front of the camera.

As an artist I made the choice before even studying my craft that I was 100% comfortable with nudity, as long as it was necessary to my characters story. I experienced my first love scene in a short film, on a closed set. It was so choreographed under the sheets that it was anything but sexy. But the experience was extremely valuable and I’m happy I got to learn the intricacies of such a scene while on a small set. I later had an audition for Broadwalk Empire. I was very excited about this, mainly because I trust the director and the integrity of the show and secondly because  I love the style of the 1920s. Dressing in 1920s  boudoir  made use of my fashion history knowledge and my vast vintage collection for the auditions. Infact it was one of my favorite auditions to date.

I didn’t get the role. However, I decided in the process I am comfortable with  nudity for a reoccurring role on a television show, providing I believe it is absolutely necessary. I had only considered nudity within film before.

I firmly believe that as an artist it is not my job to edit the truth but to tell it. If my character has a nude scene and it is necessary for the development of the story then as an actress why would I edit that? However authenticity is key and there will be scripts where the nudity has nothing to do with the characters development and everything to do with ratings. A recent example that comes to mind was a script I agreed to read, that was quite frankly hard to even finish. My character was taking off her top in every single scene. It made no sense to the story and needless to say I declined the role.

Whatever you decide, you have to stay true to yourself and what you are comfortable with.

Thanks so much, Emma! We always appreciate actors who are willing to delve into the sometimes uncomfortable topic of nudity in our work. Please share your thoughts on the matter in the comments, readers! And be sure to follow Emma on twitter.

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