“Blessed are the cracked, for they let in the light.” -Groucho Marx
We came across this Fast Company article about the importance of humor in advertising and it totally resonated. While we’re more focused on longer-form storytelling, the root of it all is the same: How can I make you feel something while you watch this?
Our team has a serious respect for humor, and we’ve been lucky that everyone riffs off each other, especially in brainstorming sessions. As the group loosens up, wits, somehow, become sharper. It may be the level of comfort and lack of fear of idea rejection (or it could be some friendly, competitive one-upmanship), but either way, we get results.
What’s really interesting is how the process of humor-based brainstorming can apply to projects with more serious tones. Letting our staff think creatively in a way that works for them usually means we end up with some funny pitches. We’ve learned how to take these ideas and work backwards- seeing the merit of the organic humor but peeling it down into a more somber experience. This doesn’t always work (sometimes you just need an emotional/dramatic/visual storytelling element on its own), but more often than not, we find that humor brings out the truth of our subject matter.
Letting the funny in also applies to our work on set. You can see a person visibly relax when they’re surrounded by a little humor. Subliminally granting permission to laugh off a flubbed line, or working an off-camera joke into the scene adds richness to the final product. Essentially, letting people be people allows us to capture the good stuff.
Fast Company’s article is worth a read, and applies to many, many fields of work. We hope it inspires you to let a little light in.