When I conceived of the video project I’ve been working on, I thought it would be quick and easy. I was seriously mistaken.
I’ve done a handful of YouTube videos in the past five years, so I thought I was generally prepared for launching a serious YouTube channel. But as I studied existing YouTube channels, I quickly realized I wanted to do something entirely different.
I didn’t want to do videos which looked like some guy in his basement. I wanted to make broadcast-quality video — and that’s gotten complicated quickly.
After going through dozens of show names — each one worse than the last — I finally settled on the obvious. Since this website and some of my other online presence is already branded with my name, I gave up on the search and just called it DavidMcElroy.TV.
The target audience is people who want to be prepared for the economic, social and political changes coming in the years ahead. It’s for people who see a dysfunctional culture, a failing economy and a dying political system — and want to figure out how to protect themselves and their loved ones.
I’ll talk much more in the days ahead about the content, but much of my time at the moment is spent on technical issues. I’m having to learn things which I never thought I’d need to know.
If I were a commercial startup, there would be a technical team to handle creating basic graphics, motion graphics and the other standard effects that I need to look professional. I’d have someone to handle the music and audio editing. Someone else to handle lighting and camera work. Not to mention a video editor to put it all together in Final Cut Pro.
But I have none of those people, so I’m doing it all myself.
I’m having to go far beyond my basic video editing skills — and it’s harder than you might think. Or maybe I’m just slow. It’s hard to say.
I could produce simple YouTube videos and get them online tonight. It’s not rocket science. But it does become complicated when you’re trying to make it look as professional as possible.
Even after all that, I have a lot of work yet to do on content, since I’m the producer, writer and editor. And my biggest terror is still about my performance. I have to get myself comfortable enough in front of the camera that I don’t come across as stiff and unnatural, which has sometimes been a problem for me in the past.
When I first announced in mid-April that I was working on something new, I had hoped to launch on May 13, which was my website’s 10th anniversary. At this point, though, I can see it taking another month or two before I launch. (Let’s be honest. It could take longer. I’m terrible at estimating the time to figure this all out.)
Even after I go live with something, I’ll do simpler material at first, just to get all the bugs worked out. Then I hope to do more complicated material which can help me build an audience.
I’m really way outside my comfort zone right now, but I hope it will be something that at least some of you can enjoy within a few months.
Just do me one favor. If you ever hear me start any video by saying, “What’s up, you guys,” — which seems to be the favorite opening line of many YouTubers — please just shoot me. If I ever do that, I’ll know I’ve failed in creating the show I’ve set out to make.
And I still might fail, from any of a dozen causes. Only time will tell whether there’s a market for this concept which I think is there.
Note: The graphic above shows an early version of the channel logo in Apple Motion, which I’m using to animate it. The final version of the logo might look different, but the pieces will come flying in — if I can get this all figured out.