Why Start?

Earlier this year, Jed Hurt and Jake Schumacher, the directors of the upcoming documentary App: The Human Story, released an impressive short of Neven Mrgan speaking about design. In the short, Neven compares skeuomorphism to a classic car. It's a beautiful analogy, brought to life with the magic of movie making.

About a month later, Jake and Jed wanted to release a new short - this time with a goal "to inspire anyone, regardless of age, gender, or race who has thought about making apps." They knew the short would show footage from App Camp 4 Girls. All they needed was a speaker to tie the video to the thesis, which is where I come into the story.

After watching the footage, I wrote a script that I felt fit the piece and had the right impact, based on my own experience:

It's really important when you're starting,
To have a safe space where you feel like you can try new things,
Try and fail and that be OK.
At the beginning, its important just to feel like you can do it too.
If you have access to the Internet and resources,
Starting can be the easy part.
It's continuing that's difficult, especially when things get hard.
And its the encouragement from peers and mentors that will help you continue.
The most important thing though, is to start, because we need you.
We haven't maxed out yet on all of the apps that can be made.
So, regardless of your background or how you got in to making apps.
We need your voice, your perspective.
It's valued and it matters.

I recorded a few takes and sent the best version to Jake and Jed. I thought I was done but there was a major problem - you could tell that I'm reading! It turns out that reciting lines in a way that sounds natural is really difficult. The directors were going for a conversational piece, while I was delivering lines with the gravitas of the Think Different campaign.

I tried again, recording1 many2 takes - each with a variation of the script. None fit the tone the directors were after, so we tried a new tactic. Jake gave me a call and asked me to record my end of the conversation. He tried to set me up to deliver the lines, while I tried to respond unrehearsed. I think the end result works beautifully.

If you haven't already, check out the latest trailer for App: The Human Story. I make a cameo at 12:15.

1. This is my Obama voice. ↩︎
2. 😴 ↩︎

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