Business or pleasure? What to read, watch, listen to, and do this weekend.

It’s Friday, which for many means the end of the work week—the difference between doing what you love and loving what you do seems all the more a sensitive distinction.

A solid business/life balance is about enjoying the transition between “work” and “play”—and sometimes not recognizing the difference.

Yet, even in creative fields, sometimes a job is a matter of survival, and not of satisfaction: as we work hard to make a living wage out of something for which we feel passionately, we can somehow lose track of that passion.

It’s a matter of getting lost in the details, really.

While art often takes big sweeping perspectives on one’s life and one’s place in the huge story the whole world is telling, business and money focus on the details: dollars and cents.

This is one of the many reasons we’re hosting our big Ask Us Anything Live Community Event: to not only help us realize that survival isn’t the most we should expect out of a creative life, but to ask how that's possible.

This weekend, don’t treat your time off from work as time off from the things that matter the most to you. Instead, remember that business and pleasure aren’t totally incompatible.

Care of four filmmakers who will join us for our Ask Us Anything Event, here is what you can read, watch, listen to, and do this weekend.

Plus, we've included a few of the kinds of questions you should expect to hear answered by all of the following filmmakers at our Ask Us Anything Event—consider it a taste of what's to come.

1. Read this: “How to succeed as a creative long term: know your C.O.D.B.” by Vincent Laforet

Back in August, Vincent Laforet wrote on his blog bluntly about the realities any creative person must face in order to sustain a livelihood.

Read Vincent's article on his blog.

Presciently, Laforet brings up the idea of “responsibility” in the context of business—not just to those you support or to your ideals as an artist, but to your community. 

No creative endeavor, financially motivated or not, is ever experienced within a vacuum.

When another colleague of yours bids $6,450 for the same job you’re being asked to shoot for $1,000, and you accept it, you are not only doing yourself a disservice, but also the fellow freelancer you are bidding against—not to mention the industry.

The more you accept your responsibility as a representative member of any creative community, the more your whole lifestyle—your free time included—will become imbued with the purpose of creating, and enjoying, something meaningful.

Ask Vincent Laforet Anything:

I've just started freelancing, so how much time, money, and effort should I put into publicity and marketing? 

Or should I invest in other areas, like better gear?

2. Watch this: "Moments of NCAA March Madness: Final Four", Saturday, April 19th, at 2:00 PM EST.

Talk about being at the nexus of work and play: the NCAA's Final Four has come to an end.

The Story & Heart community in the middle of the madness.

The Story & Heart community in the middle of the madness.

You may remember too that with StillmotionCapture Studios, The Delivery Men, Ryan Booth (see below), and Belvedere Stories, the Story & Heart community went into action throughout the month of March, organizing crews who spread out all over the country to film as much of March Madness's glut and glory as was humanly and communally possible. 

Then, on April 6th, Story & Heart's first hour-long network special on CBS, which aired right before the Final Four, premiered: "Moments of NCAA March Madness".

This weekend—Saturday at 2:00 EST, precisely—our second special, "Moments of NCAA March Madness: Final Four", will air! 

These specials demonstrate the ideal of community at the core of Story & Heart: that like-minded creators from all over the country can join forces to tell a story much bigger than any could tell alone.

In turn, together we build a shared bounty of resources, and each of us can earn both a living wage and the knowledge that we're contributing to something substantial. 

Ask Stillmotion, Capture Studios, and The Delivery Men Anything:

I live in a small town and haven't had the chance to get to know any other filmmakers.

What are the best ways to meet like-minded creators?

How can I begin developing working relationships and find people I can collaborate with?

3. Listen to this: “Home” by Johnnyswim via SerialBox Presents and Ryan Booth

SerialBox Presents is Ryan Booth’s episodic ode to the single take: a series that captures intimate but well-produced performances by musicians and pairs them with interviews and assorted personal tidbits to present an all-encompassing, engaging portrait of an artist or artists potentially on the cusp of much bigger success.

In the most recent episode, Booth sits down with Nashville’s Johnnyswim. He asks one member of the duo, Amanda Ramirez, about how she balanced odd jobs with her passion to perform:

There were times when I worked at Starbucks, there were times when I worked odd jobs, and I’m glad that I had that contentment of loving music for what it is, because it got me through all those times when nothing was going on. 

While Amanda split her time pretty solidly between what she loved and what would only be simply described as a way to pay the rent, she admits that she was happy.

You must see passion as not a means to an end—to money, notoriety, whatever—but as an end unto itself.

In that way, work never distracted her from her love or her art, it only gave her the means to continue filling her life with those things she loved, because those things she loved were fulfilling enough.

Ask Ryan Booth Anything:

What can the one-take approach do for your relationship with your audience?

4. Do this: Create a day you won’t soon forget.

Back in February, we talked to Dan and Dana at Gnarly Bay about how they’re seemingly so able to pursue each day as a new adventure.

Dana began:

The moments that you see and care about...that’s all that really matters. We all become just a long story...you want it to be a good one. Right?

Then Dan, liberally taking notes from some Eddie Vedder lyrics, gave us an ultimatum:

The more days that you live that you won’t soon forget, the better your story’s going to be. So go out and do things that break the norm, and break your routine...because you’ll actually remember that day. 

Too often we reserve these kinds of days for the weekend, for the times when we aren’t occupied with surviving. Yet, if we lived each day—be it filled with work or play—with the same attitude, then we move closer and closer to having the same results.

Easier said than done, obviously. But you can begin this weekend. Begin now: greet these next two days as if they could be your last. And not in any morbid sense, but as a way to wrap your arms around that time completely.

And you may find that it will be much easier on Monday to do the same with the following week.

Ask Gnarly Bay Anything:

What is the one thing or place you've always wanted to shoot?

What, in other words, is the adventure you've always dreamed of pursuing?

The key to doing what you love and loving what you do—no matter what day of the week that happens—is to resist compartmentalizing your passion:

Every cent, every detail, every song, and every day each deserves the same consideration.

Plus, Ask Us Anything happens Tuesday, April 29th!

Share this event with your friends and fellow filmmakers by using the hashtag #HangoutWithHeart and then tune in at 6:00 PM PST!

Follow the action live right here.

Or to participate with the live Google+ Hangout On Air, join our #HangoutWithHeart here.

And of course, we’re always game for recommendations. Please share them in the comments below. There’s more to life than just surviving; let’s help each other see how that works.