6 Things I Learned Trying To Vlog: A guide for beginners like me!

Following the blockbuster success (hahaha) of that quick “How To Landi” video I shot with the WIM crew, I tried my hand at vlogging. A number of YouTube personalities have inspired me to try the format out and I figured, now is the time to shoot video!

After a few months of shooting, editing, and experimenting with this new medium, here’s a few things I learned.

6. There’s a learning curve for video

Those who grew up in the 90’s will have fond (not) memories of dial-up internet and Xanga.com. I did grow up on the internet but this was the internet pre-Facebook! When I was younger, blogs were the way to go and video was seldom used because really, who has bandwidth for that?

This has changed! Now, video is the way to go and for someone who’s written and taken photos to tell stories all her life, the transition isn’t that easy. Switching to video entails practice and learning. Video shooting and editing isn’t as intuitive as photo shooting and editing but you gotta do the work to get there!

5. It’s a lot of hard work

All you really need to do is shoot and edit – but that’s definitely not as easy as it sounds! Learning to edit on a specific software takes time and it’s a continuing process! It may take a while for you to find your editing groove and even then, the editing process takes time.

Thank god for friends who are patient enough to answer my editing questions and YouTube who has been my always present editing teacher.

5. Sometimes it gets awkward

Being in front of the camera can honestly be awkward and tiring, even for me! I’m a very extroverted person and I don’t embarrass easily but there are really times when you’re caught with the cameras rolling in the middle of a weird scenario.

Oftentimes, it’s vlogging in public that makes for a lot of weird stares. Exhibit A: I decided to vlog about my Taipei night market food trip and you can definitely see how many time people gave me the look on this vlog.

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My solution? Just keep on keeping on! Even amid weird looks and public displays, you can come up with pretty ok vlogs. The Taipei vlog is one of my favorite videos so it was all worth it!

4. Sometimes all you need is a supportive friend

For an extra confidence boost, all you need is a friend who’s willing to go with your video antics and it automatically becomes a more fun activity. I’m a firm believer in the saying “the more, the merrier” and in most vlog contexts, that is very true. Pulling (willing) people into your vlogs  will not only make it less awkward, it’ll also add another character in your video narrative!

In the example above, I randomly invited my friend Farah (who doesn’t vlog but wholeheartedly supports my online projects, like she says in the vlog) to go on a restaurant visit with me. What resulted was more fun than I’d ever imagined I’d have shooting a video.

3. You have to be creative

You can shoot videos about literally anything, it’s just a matter of finding the right angle for it. Don’t believe me? Well, the video below is one example.

I found a post on my feed about a funny app and I decided to shoot a video about it. Admittedly, it was pretty random but it was also very fun.

Always think in terms of what you, yourself would watch and go from there. I’m really not kidding when I say you could vlog about anything!

2. It’s basically telling a story your own way.

At the end of the day, this is your story that you’re presenting in your own voice. You have control over how you present it to people and what you’d want included in the narrative. Don’t be so pressured about seeming like other people you watch online, your personality should shine through everything you shoot!

You need not go far to have stories to tell. Your everyday life can be interesting depending on how you present it. This shouldn’t be hard because we all have our unique perspectives!

The vlog above resulted from just a normal afternoon hangout with friends. What was captured in the video were the things that amazed me and what I found interesting. I’d like to think that every person who watches this video experienced the same things with me!

1. Just persevere!

At the end of the day, it’s a learning process and patience is a must. In spite of everything I’ve learned in the past few months, there’s still a whole lot of things I need to learn before I really get my vlogs to the level that I’d want them on. Meantime, I’m just enjoying the journey and learning as much as I can.

What are vlogging tips that you swear by? Let me know in the comments section below!


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