Saturday, July 27, 2013

Saying goodbye.

So, this is pretty bittersweet for me, but I am leaving this place.

I have blogging here (off - and on) for SO LONG.  Since college!  I think it was 2005 when I started.  I have changed so much, since then.  Sometimes I enjoy reading old entries - that make me giggle - and cringe at the same time. So, I do not plan to unpublish this blog.

I am just going to blog elsewhere.  I am starting over because I don't want any preconceived notions about who I am or what I'm about.  And while I like the eclectic nature of this blog, it is confusing at times. So, since I am older (and hopefully more mature) - I should have a little more direction in my life - and therefore my blog should be a little less weird.  Actually, it will probably still be weird - as I am still going to be the author - but you know what I mean.

Anyway.  Here is my new blog!  It is going to be about the stuff that I have avoided talking about publicly - but am now ready to share.  The first entry is probably going to come as a huge surprise to a lot of people.  And I am (finally) cool with that.

It would be awesome if you joined me!  Just click here to come on over...

Monday, June 24, 2013

Basket Weaving.

So the LAST thing I need in my life is a new craft.  Seriously.  My craft room is so full of stuff that I need to destash... There is absolutely NO way I have space to start a basket weaving practice.

But let me tell, you, basket weaving is calling to me. I imagine my African ancestors weaving the most magnificent baskets, carrying them on their head,  trading them for supplies, handing them down the generations...  I might not have a choice.

Maybe I can store the supplies in the bathtub... Hmmm.

Okay, here is how it started.   I met this amazing lady at the art store a month or so ago.  We hit it off instantly and she invited me over to her house.  I know.  Weird.  But a good weird!  I went to her house a few weeks ago and we made jewelry with her and her neighbor.

This is some of her altered jewelry.

It was sooo much fun, we decided to do it again.  The neighbor happens to be a basket-making QUEEN.  And since basket weaving has been on my: Want to learn, list - I asked if she could teach me.  Here are some baskets she has made:

And, being the generous person that she is, she taught me!  For FREE!  

I should make more, huh?

Monday, May 20, 2013

A naked doll. May be inappropriate for work.

Meet Paul...

He may put on a tough act, but he loves hugs, (secretly) the tv show: Scandal, Budweiser, and his mama.  He is currently looking for a girlfriend, but he has not found the right woman yet.

So, I think this is my favorite doll to date.  I think I say that with every doll that I make.  Ha!  But seriously, I have been breaking through my creative blocks lately - and listening more closely to my inspiration without censoring it.  One of my hang-ups was hating to spend soooo much time on an item before it was *complete*.  I would be so focused on hurrying up and getting to the finished project - and worrying about when I would be done (or IF I would ever be done!).  But this time, I gave myself permission to just enjoy my time - even though it did take FOREVER, especially those stitches in the jeans.  SHEESH! You can probably tell by my imperfect stitches that it is all done by hand with embroidery floss.

This time, instead of making it a race,  I tried to make it a meditative activity.  Also, I gave myself permission to trash the project at anytime.  Doing that, I was able to make what I was *feeling* instead of what I think would be the *best*...  Honestly, he is far from perfect.  I wanted him to have on an A-shirt and leather shoes (unfortunately, my skills are not up for that just yet!) , and I totally regret using Red Heart on him.

But still, I am more than satisfied with how he turned out. :)  Maybe one of these days, I will be up to making a pattern for him...

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

A rant.

It's been a long time since I've ranted on here - even longer since I have talked about religion.  But something has been on my mind lately and I neeeed to get it off my chest.  

I have been avoiding talking about controversial subjects on the blog, lately - in the interest of not offending anyone.    Another reason I avoid it is because, I have realized that it is really no one's business what I believe...  I want to be judged not on my political beliefs or my religious leanings. Honestly - those things change regularly! And even if I change one or the other, it doesn't change WHO I am, and consequently how I should be perceived.

But this issue is not one of them.  I would love to be judged on this.  As a matter of fact, if you have a problem with anything that I am saying... please feel free to leave my life and/or challenge me on it because I MIGHT just do the same to you. 

I am super fired up, yall.

So, as many of you know, I was heavily indoctrinated with organized religion raised in the church.  My family has/had strong religious views that I thoroughly absorbed.  I went to church every Sunday, I read my bible almost everyday, I didn't use profanity (still don't - only because I would sound ridiculous doing so, now...), I even (gasp) waited till I was married to have sex.  Now, I usually do not offer that last bit of information out because it may be slightly misleading.  I may not have went *all the way*, but I was NO angel.  Mkay?

When I went to college (after my wild freshman year - in which I basically broke all of my personal rules mentioned above - except the sex thing), I got serious about my religion.  I read the bible like a text book.  I collected supporting texts - like a bible dictionary and other reference books.  I got to a point where I could go toe-to-toe with guys who went to theology school.  So, when a co-worker approached me about tithing (assuming that I didn't agree with the way it is normally taught in today's churches - because I didn't KNOW any better) - I laughed in her face and showed her how wrong she was.  

My uncle and I used to be pretty close and constantly talked about how lost people were - who didn't believe what we believed (which was Calvinist - also considered Reformed).  Some other Christians weren't even considered actual Christians to us.  

But even when I was so hard core, I did not understand why same sex marriages were illegal.  The laws obviously aren't meant to prevent sin.  I mean, who WOULDN'T be opposed to a law that prevented people from *thinking* of doing the wrong thing, or having sex before they were married, or  marrying a non-Christian, or um, BEING a non-Christian.  (All these things are sins, according Christian belief, by the way).

So, when I see that people are opposed to recognizing same-sex marriage, because *they don't agree with the lifestyle* - it REALLY annoys me.    This comes down to a human-rights issue.  EVEN IF you believe that same-sex relationships are sinful, there is no logical reason why you should single out *those* sinners.  The only thing you are doing is preventing them from receiving basic rights that opposite sex unions receive.  Which is NOT fair.

So, sorry if I offended you.  Actually, no.  I am not sorry.  If this post made you angry.  GOOD.  Because I am angry - and so SICK of self-righteous Christians using *I don't agree with the lifestyle* as a reason for not recognizing same-sex marriages.  It's asinine. It's unfair.  And it is preposterous for you to think otherwise.

That is all.

Thursday, March 07, 2013

In the studio

Waiting: on this canvas to dry.  My favorite and largest (it's 24x48 inches) so far.

Marveling: at how much of a mess I have to make in order to create one journal cover.

Excited: about sending this journal cover to a beautiful lady in Florida.

Wondering: why I must work on at least 4 art journals at a time while I can only work on one canvas at a time...

Flattered: to be mentioned in this post by an (AWESOME) mom at Zekey's school.

Related Videos:

Monday, February 25, 2013

Creative Exercises to get my Juices Flowing

Everyday I go into my studio, I WILL myself to create.  To create what I *feel*.  Which is SO.HARD.TO DO.  (I may have mentioned it before.)  What does making what you *feel* EVEN MEAN?  I get so frustrated, trying to work it all out.  Fortunately for me and YOU (yay, you amazing reader ;)...) I have come by some techniques that have been helping me to get into the right frame of mind to create more freely.

Stream-of-consciousness journaling

Journal Cover I made for a standard $1 journal
you can find pretty easily at Target/Walmart/dollar store...
Click here for a tutorial to make your own.
I have actually been doing this for a few years now.  I learned about the process when I started reading The Artist's Way.  It was one of the few things I actually did from the book and it has been literally LIFE changing (journaling, that is - not the book.  I didn't finish reading the book).   I journal when I am depressed, sad, anxious, insecure.  And every single time, I feel MUCH better after I do it.  I rarely even read the entries later.   Sometimes when I recommend this to my friends and family, they express concern that a household member may read their private thoughts.   Well, in my opinion, it would still be beneficial if they burned the pages afterward!  Seriously, if I ask a question in my journaling and then be completely open for the answer, I swear, I will get an answer that seemingly comes from nowhere!  I love it.

Free-form dancing
This was actually recommended to me by Angelina, a creative consultant (that is what I call her).  I first met Angelina through my son's preschool.  She was his teacher.  And if you have watched a few of my vlogs, you know that I LOVE his preschool and his teachers!  I will talk about the reasons why in another post.  One of which includes the fact that Angelina is a child intuitive!! (something else she does not call herself - but it is true!).  She is able to observe your child for a short amount of time, and know exactly what he/she needs - and then tell you how to give it to him/her in a holistic way.  And apparently she can do the same for adults!  I had a telephone conversation with her about my artist journey and  it was AMAZING.  Anyway, she gave me a lot of great advice that day - one of which includes doing free-form, tribal-like dancing to clear your chakras. Her pinterest board has some really good videos on it.  

This one was mind blowing:

Did you know that we were ALL dancers?
Here is Angelina's facebook page  if you are interested in speaking with her yourself.

Sketching from a photo
Sketch from a photo used in an art journal entry.
This is one is one that I stumbled upon on my own. I am currently trying to teach myself how to draw and I am kinda obsessed with faces.  Usually, that is the last lesson in drawing books and I may be slightly impatient.  Also, I am kinda obsessed with drawing/painting women of African descent and finding a tutorial/lesson/drawing book that teaches how to draw those faces is pretty tough. Oh, and trying to find a lesson on how to draw our hair?  Forget about it.   So, I have been finding faces on the internet to practice drawing.  And it is an extremely satisfying activity.  I would love to take one of those sketching classes where you have a live model and sketch him/her.  Ahhh, some day ;).

That is all that I have so far.  I have heard of other inspirational tactics like looking at other artist's work, following a tutorial, or being with nature.  Unfortunately, those do not work for me.  When I look at other artist's work,  I get so CONSUMED with the artist and their work, I cannot hear my own inner artist...  When I follow tutorials, I am so determined to learning every single thing, I do not give myself permission to deviate from the lesson and so the activity never becomes self-expression.  And lastly, my main creative time is late at night, so I am not about to go outside on a nature walk...  especially since I don't live in the *best* area.  

Anyway, I am by no means a creative expert (YET! Ha!).  But these are just some things that I have discovered about myself and I wanted to share.  You're welcome ;).

Sooooooo, I would love to know: how do you stay creative?

Saturday, February 23, 2013

The hardest goal.

Last month, I told myself (and all of my facebook friends) that I would paint on 100 canvases this year. My goal for 2013 is to FINALLY become an artist (I have been whining about it for a few years, now).  So, I set this goal thinking that by the time I finished 100 canvases, I would be a pretty good painter.  If I learned nothing from my 365 vlogs, I learned that practice makes much, much, better.   And if I became a really good painter, I would definitely be considered an artist.

Canvas #9: using acrylic paints

Canvas #16: using oil paints
Canvas #17: Using oil paints, acrylic paints, and acrylic inks
I planned on taking a few online and offline classes, paint on a canvas once every 3 days or so and I would reach my goal.  I thought this goal is not nearly as ambitious as my vlog a day goal.

I was wrong.

First of all, I am probably not going to finish all 100 canvases this year.  It doesn't really matter, though, because becoming an artist doesn't work like that.  (If in fact, you actually do BECOME an artist.)

Becoming an artist (I'm learning) requires a lot of soul-searching.  A lot of letting go.
of perfection
of security
of self-criticism
of previously held beliefs
of one's *idea* of what an artist is.  Hint: You don't have to be a painter of canvases to be an artist.

And letting go must be THE hardest goal I have yet to set.

Good thing I love a challenge. ;)

P.S. I post (a lot of) my paintings on my instagram: ayanared. Follow me!

P.P.S. I post pretty much everything (videos, blog posts, paintings) on my personal facebook page (add me as a friend and let me know how you know me in a message).  I am getting rid of my business page soon (although it seems that my numbers are rising! :-/...).

Thank you for reading!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

I will be successful... at something...maybe...

So, you know how those interviews with super successful people go:

Interviewer: So, when you first started doing x did you know that it would become what it has.
Super Successful Business Person: No, I had no idea!  I was just doing my thing with no ambition, whatsoever and BAM, I became successful.

Well, that probably WON'T be me.

It is kinda embarrassing to admit, but I think/hope/dream I am going to be successful at EVERYTHING I do.  I thought I was going to be a *famous* engineer.  Before I graduated, I saw myself speaking at conferences, writing (engaging) papers, explaining how to best implement a new technology into fighter jets...  Instead, I was doing testing, editing papers explaining old technology, running errands - like mailing off classified boxes.  It sucked.

Me, at my desk at my engineering job (writing a blog post, apparently)...
So, I quit.  And became a teacher.  I thought I was going to be like that teacher on Lean On Me, changing those kids lives.  I was going to teach them that math was fun - and even though it would be challenging, they could learn it!  In fact, they could learn ANYTHING.  Well, that was a colossal FAIL, also.

Me, modeling my wears.
Items for sale at a craft fair.
So, I quit.  And I was a stay-at-home mom.  When I quit my teaching job I thought: "Oh yeah, here is my chance to do my crafts full time.  I will build up my AyanaRED brand, I will make stuff and sell it in my etsy shop...  I will be like those famous Etsy Sellers.  Maybe I won't make a lot of money, but at least I will be some making money doing what I loved (which is what those famous Etsy sellers always say)... Well, turns out, *not making a lot of money* is an understatement. When I did the calculation, I was making somewhere close to $1-$2/hour.  AND I hated making the same stuff over and over again.

Then I started working at a for-profit school a.k.a a complete rip-off, pretend-education, joke-of-a-school.  I can't even type the name because 1.) They would probably sue me with their super high-priced attorneys and 2.) if I type it out, I will be seeing their ads in my gmail for months.  This school charged for an associate's degree about twice what I paid for a bachelor's degree at a private school.  And um, I am STILL paying off my student loans!  Honestly, I did not have extremely high hopes of becoming super successful working there.  But I ended up getting fired, anyway.

So THEN, I started vlogging.  And I immediately saw myself as one of those famous mommy vloggers who just shows her everyday life and people watch - and they get thousands of subscribers and sponsers...  Yada Yada.  Well, I stopped vlogging.  I got sick of it.  I got sick of showing off my junky, dirty house.  I got sick of ALWAYS carrying the camera.  I got sick of spending time editing.  Do you know that I spent a good 1.5-3 hours editing every.single.night?  Honestly, I LOVE editing videos.  I just don't love spending time every.single.night.  And, making those videos is like entertaining company.  It is really nice, sometimes - just not everyday, ya know?

Me, vlogging...
And now?  What I am I doing?  I am trying to become an artist.  Yes, I have high hopes for that also.  I plan to open my etsy shop up as an art gallery and sell my art and prints of my art and get a deal with a card company or something and sell the images - oh and maybe illustrate children's books too... Yeah, I plan to become a famous artist.

My latest painting...

Ha!  We'll see how that goes.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

And ANOTHER outfit post!

I am on a freaking roll...

Actually, this will probably be it for outfit posts for a little while... as I am running out of clothes.  LOL.    Maybe I will go thrifting soon ;).  Because did I tell you I LOVE making outfit of the day videos.

Anyway, I did a little more editing on this one.  I filmed it in two places - because the first time I did it, I had on some knee high black boots.  I did not realize how bad they looked until I saw the video!

 So, when we went out (to my grandma's 80th birthday party <------  That is the link to the vlog with my grandma.) I changed my shoes and had my brother re-record.

I thought I was going to delete the first footage - but I liked myself better.  Probably because my husband was videoing me - and I feel more... I don't know confident, and attractive, or... something with him.  But my brother makes me feel dorky modeling in front of him - because he is way cooler than me.  Here is a video of him free-styling with a homeless guy. (He is the one that goes second)

Anyway, I was mixing up the footage anyway and I liked how it looked.

Okay without further ado.  HERE is the video!  I hope you like it!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Outfit of the Day.

So, as soon as I wrote that last post bragging about how I am super motivated to make videos forever, I lost my mojo.

And that kind of stuff always happens to me.  Whenever I feel super *sure* of something - I am promptly redirected.

But (thankfully), my mojo has returned!  And guess what I did?  I did an OUTFIT post. (And not like the one I did before - which was really a joke) Can you believe it?  I was so nervous about it, and I probably edited it way too much.  But I like it.

I have been wanting to do more artistic videos.  But day-in-the-life type of vlogs do not really allow for that.  Also, I have secretly (or maybe not so secretly) envied those outfit-posters who seem so well put together and confident and cool - and, not dorky - which is why I was making fun of them in THIS POST.  I was probably none of those - but my (over?) editing kinda masked my dorky-ness.  And I am happy with it. ;-).

Okay, now.  Go ahead. Watch it and let me know what you think! It's only a minute long!

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

I finished my 365!

Wow, when you come to your blog and see 30 comments waiting, then you KNOW that it's been a while.  Well, 99% of them were spam. But still!

Anyway,  apparently I have forgotten how to write.  So please bear with me during the reading of this post.

 I finished my 365!!!!!  Can you believe it?  I made a video exposing myself, my insecurities, my artful journey, and whatever else was going on in my life for 365 days straight!  It was tiring, stressful, INSANE, but extremely satisfying.  I don't think there is anything (outside of stuff I do for my family) that I have done so consistently.  I mean, I QUIT every single of of my jobs!  Well, except for that one that I got fired from .

Anyway, I clearly love to make videos. I like to force myself to confess my shortcomings, I like to edit -and have gotten pretty fancy with it, if I do say so, myself ;-), but mostly, I love to capture the moments with my kids. A lot of times when I am editing, I catch something that I didn't notice before - like Anaya pulling Zekey's hair - which TOTALLY explains why he started *randomly* screaming...  And I get to remember stuff that happened.  Like I watched my very first day in the life video the other day and it was so fun to watch how my kids interacted back then.  I am looking forward to recording them for as long as YouTube will allow me to upload videos - and when I can't - I will probably find some other place to store them.

So, I am actually continuing to make daily videos on another channel: mommywifecrafter.   I am doing mostly day-in-the-life type videos because those are my absolute favorite ones to watch.  Here are some other channels that do them that I watch pretty regularly:
Valerie Brown
It's judy's life

My other channel (ayanared) will mostly be about my creative journey and tutorials.  I separated them because I like stuff that is clean.  And when someone subscribed I would have no idea WHY - and I would wonder if they were looking for more tutorials - or more daily stuff.

So, I actually took down all of my 365 vlogs.  For 2 reasons.  (1) (as mentioned above) To keep my daily/kid/cooking stuff separated from my creative stuff. (2) Because my 365 videos kinda sucked.  Now when I write that - I feel kinda self conscious.  It reminds me of a friend I had in high school who had the worst pizza face I have ever seen.  He was also one of the nicest, funniest guys I have ever met.  So, imagine my dismay when he asked me one day if his face looked like it was breaking out?  I mean what do you say to that?  CLEARLY his face was broken out - but maybe he meant *more* broken out than usual - which would be impossible for me to tell.  So, yeah - maybe the difference in my vlog quality is not so significant to you as it would be to me.

But here is my first vlog:                                                 And here is my latest:


Oh and if you are wondering why you can still see the first vlog (even though I said I took them down - it is because I didn't really take then down - I just unlisted them.  So, they are still accessible with a link, even though they are not seen on my channel or with a search.

Of course I am not deleting them!!!  

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Everything I know about Youtube partnerships and Youtube Networks...

Procrastination is a lie.

Seriously, it tells you: "Heyyyyy, you don't want to do that NOW, that will just totally ruin your mood" When all the while my mood is RUINED anyway, because I feel guilty about not doing whatever task I am procrastinating. In my case, writing this post.

Whoo! I feel So.much.better. (now that I am actually doing it)

Okay. I promised to tell you how I became a full fledged partner. First of all let me tell you about the types of partners. I have done some research on what it means to be a partner - and how to actually become one and the different types - but I could not find comprehensive information. Let me just tell you what I (think I) know. ;)

 One type of partner (the basic type) is allowed to
  •  Monetize their channel. 
  •  Also, I noticed with these types of partners, if a viewer mouses over the time bar, they are able to see small thumbnails of the video corresponding to that time. This is super helpful for skipping around the video instead of having to watch the entire video or skip around aimlessly. That is pretty much the extent of the basic partnership that I could see. I got this type of partnership soon after I started vlogging. In order to monetize my video, I just clicked a button for each video. 

 The other type of partnership (the full-fledged type) have the above abilities AND the ability to
  • Have advertisements that are longer (and therefore more likely to be clicked). 
  • Have a image button next to the subscribe button. People typically make this button have an arrow pointing to the subscribe button. 
  • Upload a custom thumbnail. When you upload a video, three thumbnails are selected (seemingly random) from your video. Without a partnership, you have the ability to pick from these three only . Oftentimes, these three thumbnails look crazy. So a custom thumbnail option is really handy. I usually do not upload a custom thumbnail, though... Too lazy, I guess. And most of the time, I have no idea what my thumbnail should be. 
  • Have a custom banner on the partner's youtube homepage. Having a custom thumbnail will unify your channel and helps a lot with branding. This is another option that I have not taken advantage of. To be honest, I have not invested the time to figure out how to do this. Maybe after my 365, I will have time to do these kinds of things to *pretty* up my channel. 
 For now, I am working on trying to produce better content, you know?

Anyway, I got to be a "full-fledged partner" recently, when I joined a Network. To be honest, I have limited knowledge about Networks and such also. There is surprisingly little information about these kinds of things freely available. I can tell you the specifics about mine (as I did sign the contract!). A contract which has a span of 24 months!
  •  The name of my network is MomPulse - a network for moms, duh! But it is under a bigger network called I heard about from another Youtuber. When she told me about it, I immediately looked them up. To get actual information, you have to fill out a form requesting more information. I was contacted very shortly by Mike (whose email address is: mikec[at]fullscreen[dot]net), who gave me the most amazing compliments on my channel.  And he is super easy to work with! I am sure he is the real reason I signed up.  He told me that in order to sign with them, I typically have to have 20,000 views/month.  At the time I wasn't quite there, yet but he would bend the rules just for me if I still wasn't there in a week or so.  ;)  After a week, I was there!  So, I signed up! 
  • I share my monetization proceeds with them. 70-30. I get 70%, they get 30%. 
  • I have the opportunity to make money in other ways. For example, I can do sponsored videos where I show a clip of maybe a movie, maybe a commercial... whatever they provide me with and I would get paid per view.  I have not done one of these yet, because I don't think my viewers would be interested in any of the ones provided so, far.
And that is about all the information I can think of for now!  I will update this post when I get more information.  Thank you for reading!  And, um, watching the video below:

Maybe I will be back tomorrow... but more likely in a few days. ;)  

Saturday, October 06, 2012

Making Money on YouTube.

This is a topic that everybody wants to know about, but very few talk about.  How much money do YouTubers make?

Well, the answer (for me): Not very much...

First of all, let me tell you HOW to make money.  There are at least a few ways.
1.) Embedded Advertisements:   These ads are displayed before, during, or after a video.  If someone clicks it, you get a couple pennies. (Warning: DO NOT click these ads on your own videos or tell people to click them.  Google will take away your ability to get embedded ads lickety split.) In order to get these advertisements, you have to be a partner*.  Becoming a partner is not as straightforward as one might expect.  I think it has something to do with the frequency that you post videos and how many views you get.  But my husband recently was invited to put ads on his videos, and he doesn't even post them!  And one of my subscribers puts of videos (not very often - but certainly more than my husband) that has pretty good views on each video (100+ views/video)  and still has not been able to get a partnership...  So, who really knows?

2.) Reviews: Some companies will pay YouTubers significant cash to talk about their products.  As you can imagine, these companies want exposure to said YouTuber's viewers.  If you do not have a lot of viewers, this may not be a good option for you.

3.) Selling your own stuff: Vlogging is different from blogging because it is more intimate.  Reading someone's words is not nearly as personal as watching them speak.  This is why it may be more profitable to make vlogs.  So, if you have something to sell, and don't mind being on camera, this may be a good option for you.  Of course you do not want to come off as a sales person.

I make a minuscule amount of money from #1 .  ~ 50cents per day.  Making videos on YouTube is obviously not a get-rich-quick scheme ;).  BUT it is something I looooove to do.  So, maybe one day, if my viewers increase significantly, I will be able to sustain myself (or at least my crafts! Ha!)

Here is a video that I posted yesterday:

Tomorrow, I will share how I became a full fledged partner*.

Friday, October 05, 2012

I was involved with some drama on YouTube once.

Once upon a time I was involved with an AMAZING group of women ...and a guy ;) on YouTube.  They were very supportive, kind, sharing.  Really, if I was feeling down, I would log onto the facebook group for a lift.  Admittedly,  somethings about the group made me a little uncomfortable.

For one, I was a little uncomfortable with some members' zealousness about their religion.  For example, if anyone was having an issue with someone else (outside of the group)- then it would be blamed on SATAN who must be working with that other person. And occasionally, a video of a pastor preaching would be posted in the facebook group.

Another thing that made me raise my eyebrow was the members' dedication to the "founder".  It was a teensy bit eerie the way they almost worshiped her, giving her credit for stuff she did not create... and complaining about people who disagree (publicly) with her. It could be argued that if it weren't for her, then the amazing group would not exist...  But still, it was kinda crazy.

These things were not enough for me to disassociate myself from the group.  Like I said, they were a great bunch.  I would roll my eyes and complain to E about it.  But overall, it was a fun group...

Until the group changed for the worst.  New rules were enforced that changed the whole dynamic of the group.  It went from kinda weird to extremely weird.

A lot of us quit (of course).  And then the drama began.  Some people wanted to announce it on our channel.  To me, this made sense - if I have been light-weight advertising for the group, mentioning it in a lot of videos, wouldn't it make sense that I tell people who watched those videos that I left the group and why?

Well, this was against the newly-enforced "rules".

So, some of the people who mentioned it were cyber-bullied.  Bullying (cyber or not) is one of my pet-peeves.  Actually, pet-peeve is too light a word.  I abhor bullying.  So, I wrote a pretty harsh blog-post about the whole thing and did a vlog pointing to it.  Of course there was backlash.  I expected it.  But, it DID stop the bullying.

Although, I was warned (by the "founder" of course) that I would lose subscribers,  I actually gained quite a few by doing that (although that was NOT my intention!)...

Anyway, that was the end of my youtube "drama".   It was kinda exciting, but I would not welcome too much of it!

Here is a vlog/rant that I did yesterday:

I know I broke a few of my own rules... I repeated myself, no visuals... But like I said (repeated on here and on the vlog, I am not perfect).  And I was afraid of editing too much.   I would rather under-edit than over edit, you know?

Anyway, that is what I have for today.  Tomorrow, let's talk about what everybody wants to hear about: Making that Money!

See you then!

Thursday, October 04, 2012

What NOT to share on YouTube...

If you are a blogger, this is probably not really a factor for you.  You would basically just share what you would share on your blog - and not share, what you WOULDN'T share on your blog... duh.

As a fairly open person I share pretty much everything, with everybody anyway - so that is precisely what I do on my videos.  I do have a few rules, however...

1.) I do not share other people's business (without their permission!).  My videos are pretty self involved - so they are about basically what is going on with me, only.

2.) I do not share something that I mind other people knowing (and judging me on!).  For example, if I am feeling so sensitive about my weight that I do not want any input, then I won't share it.  Because let me tell you, Youtube is full of self-appointed psychologists with opinions and they are not afraid to share them!  Do NOT assume that people are basically kind... They are - but it is very likely someone will come along and burst your bubble with their rude comment.

3.) I do not share something that I may regret later.  Imagine that any of your videos become viral.  How will you feel?  Embarrassed?  Ashamed?  Then DON'T post it!!!   I have shared some stuff that had unintentionally angered a few people.  But I do NOT regret sharing it.  I will talk more about that drama tomorrow.

But for now here is a day in the life from yesterday...

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Five Tips on how to make sure your video content is interesting.

The most common complaint I hear from wanna-be-vloggers is:  "I don't have anything interesting to say".

This is not true.  The real question is: What is REALLY on your mind? And do you WANT to share it?   (Wait that is two questions - whatever)  Everyone has SOMETHING to say.  It may not be interesting to everyone, all the time.  But nothing is going to be interesting to everyone, all the time.

However, there are some ways to make your content as interesting as possible, though.  Here are some tips that I use.

1.) Talk about what you REALLY want to talk about - not what you *think* people want to hear.

2.) Edit your videos. <--- that is a link.

3.) Be excited about what you are talking about. This helps if you are doing #1.  Also, if you drink coffee. ;)

4.) Include some video/pictures of what you are talking about - show clips of it while you are talking.  This breaks up the video and make it seem to go by more quickly. It is extremely hard to watch someone um and ah while sitting on a couch with NO visual of what they are talking about.... Here is one of my most embarrassing vlogs, where I did just that.  Ugh!

5.) Keep them short.  Okay this is not a hard and fast rule, because some people that I watch, I am actually kinda bummed when the video is over.  But for the most part, most people cannot expect their 15 minute long vlog - with no visual to be interesting.  Especially if you are just starting out!

I hope these tips help!  Tomorrow, I will talk about what NOT to share on YouTube.

And here is my vlog from yesterday:

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Three Tips for Editing Your Vlogs.

So, when I first started making videos, I would not edit them.  For one, I didn't know how.  For another I thought I was being *real* by not editing out my pauses, my uh's and ums and my smacks.  Well, I guess I kinda was being real.  But there is only SO much real that is necessary during a video.

For example I do day in the life videos.  To have a 17 hour long video would be pretty ridiculous, right?  But that is my REAL life - I get about 7 hours of sleep and I am up for 17.  I cut that down to about 7-9 minutes.  Which is still pretty long for a Youtube video (in my opinion).

Well, in order to do that, I have to decide what to film and what to edit out.  I am still figuring this out for day-in-the-life videos.  But let me tell you what I have learned about editing a vlog to make it more interesting.

1.) Edit out repeats.  You are probably going to repeat yourself when you are filming.  That is just human nature.  But this will make you video seem really slowwwwww.   But your finished video should only have one instance of you saying something.  Edit out the other 2 or 3 times that you may say it.

2.) Edit out pauses. In a normal conversation, there are some pretty long pauses.  In video, people do not have time to wait on you to spit it out.  I have edited out a pauses as short as just 1 second and it makes a BIG difference.

3.) Edit between sentences. NOT in the middle of them.  Once I learned how to pep my videos up my cutting out the pauses and repeats, I went a little too far... I edited out every single pause, um and repeat.  Watching that video will make your head spin ^.

Those are the main tips that I use to edit my videos.  I hope they help!

Here is my most recent video:

Tomorrow's topic is on content and how to decide WHAT to record. :).  See you then!

Monday, October 01, 2012

How I got started making videos.

I never imagined I would ever be a Youtuber.  I didn't even WATCH youtube until I started making vlogs.

One of my first YouTube videos was on how to crochet Watermelon Earrings. <- that is a link to the video, btw.

I was SUPER nervous, but it became THE most popular video I have ever made!  20k+views! People love tutorials!

Since did not watch videos all that much, I had no idea that the camera should be facing my work instead of facing me holding up my work!  #fail.

What I did, though, was read blogs.  And some of my blogger friends would sometimes do a vlog.  I LOVED it.  I loved seeing their facial expressions, hearing their voice - it made me feel like I knew them.  

So one day, I decided to do one.  It was pretty bad...  But at the time, I thought it was awesome.  So, the next day, I did another one.  It was just as bad (if not worse), but I was totally feeling myself.  I was like, hey, I am a natural.  Ha!  

Anyway, as you can see, I never stopped.  Everysingleday.  I kept making videos.  And they got much better! 

Here is one that I posted yesterday:

 I know they are not perfect.  But I am always learning ways to make them better.  Tomorrow, I will tell you some tips I have learned to make better videos by editing them ;).

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Blogging about Vlogging

Tomorrow is October first!  Woohoo.  The start of my segway back to blogging... semi-regularly.  I plan to write everyday next month.  I am not sure I am going to make it.  And in the hopes that I don't look like a complete loser when I fail - I am not going to name them Day One, Day Two, or anything like that.  I am going to post the 31 day button from Nesting Place.  (LOVE that blog btw). Maybe at the end of the month I will go back and number them...

This month I want to write about making videos.  Since it has completely taken over my life, I figure this will be the easiest source of daily content.

Yay, are you excited?  Yes? If you are interested in making videos, too, hopefully you will find some useful information!

Oh, also I am going to plug my video from the previous day at the end of each post... so that you won't miss a video, of course!

Here is one from yesterday:

You are welcome ;).

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

I am an unpaid psycho

Hey yall!


Okay fine.  Hey mom.  ;).

I know I have not updated this here blog in so long.  And, let me just tell you.  I hate that opening.  I do not want to hear anyone's sorry excuses for allowing their blog to become all stale and void.  Just update it, then!  No one cares.  I will just read someone else's blog if you aren't pumping out any useful information!  I don't depend on you for my blog-reading fix.  Don't give me your excuses.

Okay.  Rant to self over.

Let's just start over.

So, I have been extremely obsessed with vlogging.  Do you know, I am on day 299?????  I have been making videos EVERY SINGLE DAY for 299 days.  It is absolute madness.  I feel like a psycho.  I realize that you have to be a psycho to do ANYTHING for 365 days straight.

You would think that since I have been doing it so much and for so long, it should be really super easy.  And in a sense, you would be right.  Unfortunately, because I must really be a psycho - every time it gets too easy (i.e. boring) I change it up.  To make it harder.  It causes extreme anxiety.  But I LOVE it.  Seriously.  I feel like (for the first time EVER) I am doing exactly what I am meant to do (job-wise - obviously being a mommy is the center of my being) .

And my vlogs are getting WAY better (in my humble, humble opinion).  I kinda want to take down my first vlogs.  They are down right embarrassing.  But then that would ruin my 365...

I remember I used to refuse to edit them.  Really, because I didn't know HOW to edit them.  But now, it would have to be an extreme emergency not to edit a video.  I spend at least an hour or two editing them every night.

I used to just sit in front of the camera and rattle off my confessions.  Now, I can't stand to see myself in front of the camera for more than half of the video.

My thing now is: day in the life videos.  I have been doing them everyday for the past few days.  To me, they are SO much more interesting.  I am a pretty nosey person - so to see the ins and outs of someone's day is right up my alley!

Here, watch one:

The only problem is, although I treat my videos like a job, I don't actually get PAID.  Well, hopefully, some day I will...

Anyway, I just wanted to update this here thing - so that I won't feel like SUCH a loser.  And maybe I will try and write a blog post everyday for the month of October.

Don't laugh.