By Terence Thomas
In life, uncertainties are the most certain things you can count on. You can never be sure when an event can come along and rock your world out of the blue. Perhaps you have felt this very event in your own life, be it through some unfortunate circumstances or even a positive reversal of fortune. Either way, it is even fewer people still that can say they have experienced the twist of becoming a popular content creator. Because of that, I decided I wanted to interview Skymin, a YouTube content creator and Twitch streamer. Because for Skymin (also known as Skymin Slash) that was the reality she had found herself in.
A Simple Spark
The internet is still a truly fascinating representation of the torch of creativity continuing to proliferate as time marches on. There has been a wealth of sites that have created a well-oiled machine of cyclical content creation. Be it videos, music, art or anything in between, there seems to be a near endless amount of content being created by the day. Naturally because of this, it should come as no surprise that such things can lead to the sowing of future content creators.
In the case of Skymin, that was exactly how she and her brand as a creator came to be. Like many other creators of the current era, Skymin was inspired by the works of early creators who came before her. One such creator was RadicalSoda whose style of videos revolving around video game reviews resonated with Skymin and served as one of her inspirations. RadicalSoda created YouTube videos in the “video essay” category of reviews which generally focused on balancing some comedy with criticisms as well as overall thoughts. However, if we are talking about the most influential figure that inspired Skymin’s work, then look no further than the “Let’s Player” Chuggaconroy. Like RadicalSoda, Chuggaconroy (or just Chugga as his is also known) is a Youtuber focusing his content on creating finely crafted and in depth “Let’s Plays” acting as both guides and entertainment for his viewers. As far as video game related content creators go, Chugga can be seen as one of the earlier adopters of the platform that has stuck around throughout its changes with the channels oldest video dating back to March 16, 2008. Since that time, his videos have entertained well over a million people and as you may expect, Skymin was one of those people. It was through Chugga’s intricately developed videos that Skymin gained an appreciation for the craft of making YouTube videos and with the egging on of a friend, 2010 would be the year Skymin Slash created its initial channel spark with its first video.
A New Experience
With the start of a new endeavor in content creation, there also came new experiences and hiccups. As nice as making money on videos may sound to the uninformed, it is no less taxing on the creative mind. Assuming you are not a creator who outsources much of their workload (of which Skymin is not), the process for creating even one video can be a daunting task. Consider the following: The creation of videos is not unlike the creation of a short film. Depending on the content within it can be a tad easier or notably more difficult, but the bottom line is that to be successful in this line of business more than just a “one and done” video creation style is needed.
For YouTube creators, there are a multitude of possibilities to get popular, but none of those ways are guaranteed to succeed. One may suddenly blow up from creating a viral video or a chance appearance in another popular creator’s channel may allow them to reach out to an audience they may never have been able to reach.
So what exactly happens when you manage to grab an audience? Well, there is no rulebook that says what has to happen but generally speaking, the way to succeed after initial growth is to stick with a winning formula. For Skymin, that formula was her own video essays.
Through following her own interests and consistent hard work on the quality of her videos, Skymin would grow to the impressive heights of having over 200 thousand subscribers.
Hard Times and Perseverance
As alluded to at the start of the article, not everything surrounding content creation is roses for the creator. Sometimes there are extraneous circumstances that can not be ignored.
It is important to remember that even though the allure of making money from videos is not doubt great, it is easy to forget what goes into the process. For someone trying to make a living on YouTube, they need to consider the expenses that go into video production. In addition to that, the money earned must be kept track of by the creator themselves in order to properly file taxes. Things such as software, hardware, and sometimes even living expenses are some of the things that may be eligible for a write-off.
Money aside, the job can also be mentally taxing. Viewer interaction will not always be pleasant and writing several page scripts on a regular basis can take its toll on the creator. For a while, time was one of Skymin’s obstacles as education cut into content creation when she attended classes. This also linked to an advantage however, as the university classes she took aided her in her future video editing endeavors.
“There’s a lot of things I learned in school that directly translate to video creation skills.”
While juggling several responsibilities was certainly difficult, there was still a silver lining for her in the end. This is part of what drives creators like Skymin to continue forward.