Over the last ten years when I have incorporated live video and audio into my digital communications workshops and documented examples of organisations through my tutorials about live streaming, there are times when live streaming an event or specific content is considered a little more challenging in terms of managing the response from the audience. I know that comments in live streams are one of the reasons some organisations decide to step away from the opportunity that live streaming presents.
So I was intrigued to check out the live stream this week from the Royal Academy with their first ever live-streamed life class, led by artist Jonathan Yeo. What would the virtual audience think of a live stream about life drawing? Would the comments be filled with inappropriate posts?
The live stream was part of the promotion for the project ‘From Life’ and in celebration of an important artistic tradition as the RA enters its 250th birthday year. Due to social media community standards, the Royal Academy stated that the event did not feature full nudity.
The Royal Academy invited anyone to participate in the live steam – they commented “Drawing the human figure is a time-honoured method for artists to hone their observational skills, but it’s also a great way to unleash your creativity regardless of drawing ability, giving your hand-eye coordination a workout in the process. It’s great for mental alertness and relaxation and may even help prevent memory loss”.
During the live stream the audience received guidance from the artist Jonathan Yeo – the life drawing model changed positions to give people practice at drawing quickly and this also kept the event interesting. Participants watching the live stream were invited to follow the Royal Academy on Twitter and Instagram and to share photos of their drawings using the hashtag #LifeDrawingLive.
Attendees were reminded that there are drop-in drawing sessions on Tuesdays at the Royal Academy and also how to experience the historic Life Room (where the live stream was broadcast from) in person by attending of classes and courses. So the live stream also helped promote the work of the Royal Academy.
The live stream was simulcast on YouTube, Facebook Live and Periscope/Twitter live. The event is certainly worth reviewing to get ideas if you are new to live streaming. I have captured some thoughts to help you learn from the best practice of the event which I hope will be of assistance.
The fact that the live stream had an event hashtag that was prominently promoted both before and during the live stream is helpful to the audience who want to follow along and also to the Royal Academy to review how people are interacting with their class.
You will see in the replay that the live stream started with a pre-recorded video telling you a little about the event. Note how they live streamed to multiple channels. Hosting the archive on their website is a great way for the Royal Academy to continue to gain views of their live event.
I really liked the pre-event social content such as this example of showing the practice session for the live stream – it just goes to demonstrate that while a live stream is in real-time, alot of work goes into preparing for an event.
In addition, the Royal Academy provided some tips in advance of the event to give people an idea of what they might use as drawing materials. This also helps people get excited about participating in the live stream.
During the live stream the artist who was the instructor gave attendees guidance and also took time to answer questions from the live stream audience. Someone from the live stream production team or the Royal Academy digital team were actively monitoring the comments on social and responding to questions from the live stream audience.
The #LifeDrawingLive event producers also shared some behind the scenes photos of the live stream. Events such as this from the Royal Academy are enhanced with an experienced live stream production team.
Don’t under estimate the power of radio to promote your event – I found out about the live stream as I heard a snippet on a radio show from broadcaster Anneka Rice who attended the live event. I am unsure of any specific arrangement that the Royal Academy have with the BBC, but her enthusiasm at having attended encouraged me to search out the replay.
Inviting your participants to share their experiences of participating in your live stream on their social networks is another way to build visibility for your live event – searching the event hashtag #LifeDrawingLive, you will discover lots of examples of people watching the live stream from home and participating in the life drawing class.
Overall, the Royal Academy life drawing live stream offers us lots of examples of good practice for live streaming events. If you are planning to use live streaming for your events and workshops it is worth studying. Rememeber that if you are live streaming your audience and the people leading the event, you must obtain a release.
Additional Resources And Live Streaming Tips
If you want to learn more about integrating live streaming into your communications, here are some resources to assist you:
> Read my extensive collection of tutorials about live streaming here.
> Watch my weekly Live Stream Insiders Show where I cover live stream technologies, news and case studies every week – find the replays on YouTube where you can subscribe to get notifications when they are available alongside the resources for each episode (remember to click the little bell if you want notifications not only on YouTube but also sent to your email) or watch live on Facebook Live every Sunday at 7pm (2pm ET).
> Schedule a free consultation with me to explore your live stream questions.