After much procrastination, overthinking, and consideration, I am writing these lines to communicate with the world outside again.
Let's start with what I am up to these days.
That's mostly figuring out my place in the creator economy world.
And that starts with the thing I'm most passionate about the last five years.
Gone are the years when I looked forward sitting down on a virtual poker table, placing bets or drawing lines on financial charts. Making videos is my modern passion but for the time being, it doesn't pay nearly as much as my previous hobbies!
Yet, this week I fully leaned into it. The reason? I found out solving filmmaking problems makes me feel happy as I had already realized five years ago in the following video. I kind of forgot, though.
Usually I don't know what I'll do the next day. I may do some web development. I may take care my business financials. Or I could end up playing snooker.
You can say my days are very random. And as I love routine, this can cause an issue.
Doing a lot of things sporadically doesn't allow me to enjoy many of them. Some things are boring but need my attention. Other things are exciting, but I don't see the point spending time on. Yet I still do. So, I quickly abandon those for something more interesting, only to move to the next thing. A little bit of this and a little bit of that gets me nowhere in particular.
Fun fact: I interrupted writing and proofreading this article a few times. Although I wrote the bulk of it in matter of an hour, I'm adding these paragraphs four hours later!
During Easter, I understood that I wasn't having fun, despite living a relatively easy life. Find the joy in your life, said Morgan Freeman in the Bucket List, one of my all-time favorite movies. Filmmaking provides that joy to me.
So I am going all-in on filmmaking.
Yet, instead of filming even MORE footage to sit unused in my hard disks, I decided to improve an essential skill in filmmaking: editing.
Mastering DaVinci Resolve
Today it's the THIRD day in a row I'm exclusively spending figuring out the coloring process in DaVinci Resolve. I'm that determined.
I have been a DaVinci Resolve user for years. Since quitting Adobe Premiere in favor of Blackmagic's software, I have been editing much more enjoyably. Still, I haven't made that many videos. But just by loading up Resolve, my heart fills with joy. Even when I'm not planning on editing, I like opening the program. It's a strange feeling. It just makes me happy to have my editing suite open at all times. It helps that it doesn't crash or slow down my computer.
If you can't tell, I'm a VERY happy user of that program.
There's a trend nowadays on YouTube where every creator is moving to DaVinci Resolve. I don't know whether Blackmagic's marketing team is doing a great job or if people finally understand what an excellent piece of software Resolve is. Whatever the case, the more people using the software, the better for early adopters. More bugs and problems will be sorted out quickly. Not that I can think of any, though!
Now, back to my coloring mania.
In the past, I've received positive comments about my videos, particularly about their color. I was not surprised. Right from the beginning of making videos, I meticulously edited EVERY clip in all of my videos to perfect their colors; or, to say the least, give them an aesthetic I found appropriate to my tastes.
I didn't want to merely cut and insert clips to construct a story. I wanted to make the picture look nice and stand out, much like web designers spend time on the website's looks.
There are professional colorists out there. Me? I am just a hobbyist who is a bit perfectionist. So, I thought I had spent enough time studying the training lessons and tutorials (and money on courses) to learn the ins and outs of the coloring process in DaVinci Resolve.
Boy, was I wrong!
This week I spent time learning about DaVinci YRGB Color managed science, Intermediate color space, and how to create HDR videos. With the exception of HDR videos, color science, and processing mode is BASIC stuff that I should have known right from the start! And that's because if I change any of that, my source clips' colors will change!
I had zero idea!
I didn't understand Gamma and color space at all. Honestly, I didn't care.
I thought it wouldn't make that big of a difference. But I had spent infinite hours setting up my camera profiles so that I film in the best way possible, retaining as much dynamic range from the sensor as possible. So, why throw all that work away when I import the footage on a Rec709 timeline?
It was time to dive deeper. And it was time for a few revelations!
I began fiddling with the project settings. Changing a thing or two, saving settings, and checking the picture. Over and over again. I couldn't see significant changes. So, I kept thinking that I was correct not to care in the first place.
But then, I noticed something. While my clips on the timeline didn't change much, the clips on my source monitor changed significantly with every change! Woah! Wait, do project settings affect the source clips? What about the... timeline?
I was SHOCKED to find out just yesterday that I can set the color space independently on each timeline, irrespective of the project's color space! You should have seen my face at that moment.
Now, I might be sounding a lot technical in the last few paragraphs. But if you've been editing on any piece of software and creating videos online, I'm here to tell you that there's a lot you can do besides cutting and exporting your footage. I haven't done ANY of that this week, yet I spent 6 hours every day trying to understand the coloring process.
For sure, the law of diminishing returns and the Pareto principle comes to mind at this point. I'm focusing way too much on improving and perfecting the image quality, which is not why people are watching my videos or finding me online. I should be creating more videos instead! Yet, I'm a victim of perfectionism, and I am genuinely interested in learning these things.
So there's that about what I'm up to in my filmmaking career. I'm planning on sharing more of my findings in the future.
Yes, that was simply an introduction to what I've learned in video editing recently! Wait until you read the full article; that should turn out VERY technical.
Having said that...
My plan for creating content online is changing
My content creation strategy has seen better days. When I'm fixed on a schedule and post content semi-regularly, I become pessimistic and overwhelmed and quit the whole creation thing, dragging myself to oblivion.
For example, in January, I signed up for Typefully to help me organize my tweets. I experimented for a month and posted 2-3 tweets daily. Typefully worked well, and it became an integral part of my creating process, allowing me to get thoughts from my head to the world efficiently. I also used Apple Notes, Notion, and Zapier for a fully automated workflow.
I meant to share that workflow on my blog in my quest for the perfect social sharing process.
Guess what. You didn't get the email because I never wrote anything.
Why? Because I stopped using Typefully, Notion, and every other program.
Why? Because I stopped tweeting in the first place!
Fortunately, I haven't stopped writing down my thoughts, though. One day those could come in handy.
When it comes to creating content online my aim is not to tell you what you should do or how to do it. Instead I like sharing my mistakes and document the hurdles I came across while trying to go from point A to point B.
So, where do I stand nowadays when it comes to writing online, posting pictures, and uploading videos?
I really want to write stories.
I definitely want to create more videos.
And I surely want to give podcasting another try.
I could lean into just one of those and become better. Or continue being a jack of all trades, master of none. I'll probably do the latter as I always do.
That doesn't sound that bad, given I am fortunate enough to have other sources of income and don't depend on influencing people online to make a living.
Thus, I will keep experimenting with new strategies and become more active whenever I like it. Whenever it feels like fun. Because in the end, I realized that the whole point was having fun.
Organizing, overthinking the streamlining process, and planning out every detail isn't fun. And you know what that doesn't accomplish? Creating content!
At some random time, I've read that being super organized isn't the same as being productive. And that hit a nerve with me. That was the bitter truth. I had spent so many hours organizing stuff to the point that I felt productive. Yet, I hadn't produced anything!
When I imported videos to my computer, I was so focused on adding tags/keywords, writing scene descriptions, coloring the footage, and backing all that data up, that when I finished, I felt accomplished. "Now everything is in its place, ready to be edited," I used to tell myself. (I keep saying the same thing about my blog, everything is set up, now all I have to do is write!)
Only I NEVER edited or did I make an actual YouTube video out of that footage! (much like I do not write!)
Then I proceeded to go for my daily walk, wondering what my next video would be all about. What was I thinking? More stories? More filming? I ALREADY had stories captured in my camera. Stories that have been waiting patiently in my hard drives for me to tell.
I found another excuse. I told myself that video is too time-consuming, let's write a few blog posts instead.
When did jumping from one medium to another ever help anyone?
Battling with perfectionism
I want to create the perfect video. I want to write the perfect blog post. Yet, when I finally post something, I immediately tell myself: "Don't worry, the next one will be a lot better".
I knew beforehand that I would never be satisfied with my creations. But I still wait for that perfect moment to create the perfect thing. Which I know will NOT be perfect.
So, I've thought of just putting things out there. Like this post.
Random thoughts that will live forever online.
They are not perfect. I know. But at least they are published. Done is better than perfect. A lot better.
At last, I'm communicating again. I've missed this so much. And every time I'm inspired to publish something out of nowhere, I honestly don't understand what kept me from doing it in the past. Perfectionism is one reason, but not the only one.
So, this post will also be sent to my newsletter readers. Oh, did I say newsletter?
I haven't felt more depressed about anything I've created in the past than my newsletter.
In the beginning, I felt excited. As I kept sending letters I felt great. Then I stopped because I didn't see the point. Who cares about what I have to say?
Then I received a few emails. They were full of encouraging words from people who have been following me for YEARS. Some for a decade! True fans!
I've forgotten this kind of connection with the people. But then I think of my readers who have subscribed to my paid newsletter with their hard-earned money, which I haven't appropriately updated for months. Just a random issue here and there. I owe them big time.
So, for start, I want to give an update on my financial freedom journey that I started three years ago. I meant to make a million dollars in ten years, as I've explained in the video.
And since then I haven't posted an update! I left people in the dark, and it's one of my most popular videos! People are interested in that project. Those are people who do care!
How things are going in my journey? Will I make it? Is financial freedom achievable when working from home after all? What has my experience been all this time?
Burning questions that I would have.
I was thinking of making an update on YouTube. But that will take time. And if you've read to this point, you know I'll come up with a bunch of excuses not to produce the video before the ten years lapse.
So instead for a quicker turnaround, I thought of sharing the update with my paid newsletter subscribers, as I'll include a few sensitive data. It makes sense to share behind a paywall, doesn't it?
What about the free newsletter? THIS article is a good restart.
More letters coming, hopefully
Next, I was thinking of sending a monthly issue of what I've shared the past month online on different platforms. Given I will first create content, that is!
I could let readers know of the video I posted on YouTube, an Instagram reel where I quickly showed how I solved a problem and a couple of favorite Tweets of mine. Nothing spectacular, but it will get the ball rolling.
My general mindset from now on will be "Don't plan." I've got tired of planning.
Less talk, more action
That's all from me for now. Ghost (my blogging platform) editor is telling me I've already reached 1,750 words in an hour at this point, and I haven't yet written the introductory paragraphs! Heck, I didn't even update you on my health and me losing weight!
I don't think you got much value from this article, but if you're new around here, I hope you got to know me a bit better. Old friends will be glad to hear that I'm still alive, anyway!
Feel free to unsubscribe if this block of text didn't make any sense. No hard feelings. I hope you liked the hand-picked photos, at least!
Till the next one, find the joy in your life and have fun!