My Journey Making A "💩ty" Video
3 min read

My Journey Making A "💩ty" Video

My Journey Making A "💩ty" Video
YouTube overall reaches more people age 18-49 than all linear TV networks combined - Nielsen

TLDR; The video I made is at the bottom.

Knowing how to reach people where they are is essential. In my last post I spoke about the importance of leverageable tools. Work on things that can earn and have impact while not requiring more time. Visual media and storytelling was a huge weak point for me, here is how I solved it.

Learn From The Best

Casey Neistat has almost 13 million YouTube followers. He's been making videos for over a decade. He’s a master and has done laps on the 10,000 hour rule. He has an online class that teaches storytelling and video making. I signed up and it’s been awesome.

The class is made of video lessons and assignments. You watch Casey walk the streets of NYC and find stories all over. Then you watch him record and edit two videos. He makes everything look wayyyy easier than it is. Part of the class is to work “along” Casey and make two videos. You do this with cohorts of people from all over the world. In my class there are people from Greece, Spain, Japan, and small towns in the US.

Everyone is super friendly and provides feedback on your work!

The Process

Since I’m halfway done with the class, I’m only gonna cover the first video. So far it’s been a lot of work. But also a lot of fun.

The day we had to come up with our first idea, I was up in the suburbs. You might think there is less potential for a story than the city, but you’d be wrong.

Everything is a story

A phone post - what wood is used, why are they so tall, why are they a certain distance apart, how are they replaced, what problems are faced as they age, flyers posted on them, etc.

Parking meters - how much money do they generate, what’s the mechanism, why do we rely on people to judge the amount of time they’ll need, ticketing process, future of coinless operations, etc. Stories are everywhere.

So what was mine?

Geese poop.

Yep.

I thought there was an interesting story in something we all deal with. It seems like a nuisance but the story that came out was fascinating.

Time to Record

When we had to start recording, I was back in the city. There’s only one issue, I needed geese. I don’t live near the park. I had to wake up super early in the morning before work, train up to Central Park. I recorded geese (and their poop), interviewed people, and got more content for my video.

Getting good content and videos that tell a good story is hard. I did it all with my phone. There are so many micro decisions, what does the frame look like, lighting, sound, etc. Then my video needed bits of me talking on camera. This was a steep learning curve, you can see it in my video.

Here is what my recording setup looked like 😅:

Editing

Casey says recording video is when you get all your ingredients, editing is when you’re cooking. He couldn’t have been more right.

Editing takes hours and hours even for a simple video. This will get easier with time but damn it’s hard to get things how you want them. In editing is when you weave all the content together to tell the story.

Great (free) music is also needed. It sets the pace and tone of the video. It’s not something we notice but I can't overstate the implications.

A must with videos: keeping attention. Short clips with constant cuts and everything has to be as interesting as possible. It’s all about trimming the fat. Constant espresso shots of interesting. Easier said than done.

The Result?

Here is my first video! It’s definitely a little rough, but learning has to start somewhere. I had a ton of fun making it, let me know what you think!

See part 2 here