Lifestyle, Photography, Video

Six YouTubers Who Will Give You A Different Outlook on Vlogging

It’s no surprise that YouTube vloggers are essentially taking up the entirety of the internet these days. YouTube, known as the main video sharing platform in the world, holds more than one billion users per month as well as generates more than 300 hours of uploads per minute. However, while it’s amazing to see bloggers advancing to YouTube to create video content, it becomes extremely hard to filter through what you might find appealing and what others might find “viral” or “worthy” of your time. It’s important to find users or bloggers who do not have millions of subscribers, but rather focus on bloggers who hone in on important and viral topics without being so famous already, and join their following as you watch them gain more experience in content creation. Being that I spend hours a day on my laptop, I fortunately have the luxury to peruse through users’ profiles and find what appeals to me. Though I have dozens of favorites, I compiled a list of six people that I really thought would be the “‘best” users out there, without listing those who have millions of followers already.

  1. Peter Mckinnon – Photography/Tutorials

Based out of Canada, McKinnon has more than 900,000 subscribers on YouTube (which, in retrospect, is not that much for a decently good YouTuber these days). He attributes most to all of his videos to building up one’s photography skills, editing skills, and what equipment to consider buying. I would definitely check this guy out if you’re considering purchasing a camera, even if you’re just starting within the realm of photography. In addition, his Instagram account is filled to the brim with amazing pictures, all of which he has taken.

2.  Chris Klemens – Comedy, Daily Vlogging

Klemens has not only followed in the footsteps of major YouTube celebrities such as David Dobrik and Elijah & Christine, but he has also added a sarcastic twist to his content, making it incredibly funny and witty. His website in which he constantly advertises, sells merchandise that sends its profit to organizations like Planned Parenthood, the Human Rights Campaign, and more, making it all that more enjoyable to partake in. Known primarily for recording a video hating on famous YouTuber Jake Paul, Klemens enjoys poking fun at some of the biggest failures of YouTube’s history.

3.  Justin Escalona – Short Films, Daily Vlogging

Originally from the outskirts of Chicago but a student at the University of Southern California Film School, Escalona built up his reputation as a filmmaker while still studying in college. His channel, which features his “Daily Docs” (daily episodes that feature his friends, surroundings, and everyday struggles as a teenager in the heart of Los Angeles), has attracted more than 250,000 followers on YouTube alone. Most recently, Escalona began directing and producing short films, mainly since he earned his title as a filmmaker and a founder of the clothing brand ‘1340 Collective Co.’. Escalona is very active on his Instagram story and is constantly reaching out to his fans for inspiration on videos, selling equipment, or inviting them to his apartment in Los Angeles or meet ups or the chance to hang out.

4.  Shannon Beveridge – Relationships/LGBTQ Community

Most widely known for her presence on Tumblr, Shannon, also known as ‘NowThisIsLiving’, has been featured as one of the most prominent members of the LGBTQ community on YouTube. From most recently breaking up with her girlfriend, who also happened to be a YouTube star, Shannon has devoted several vlog posts to helping individuals overcome struggles as a member of the LGBTQ community. Shannon also hangs out with Chris Klemens (See #2), especially in videos which were dedicated to making sarcastic comments about Jake Paul and his behavior in the media.

5.  Monica Church – Daily Vlogging/Travel

Most commonly known as one of the ‘Church Twins’, Monica’s channel is dedicated to her life of travel, mostly on the West Coast between her home in Washington and Los Angeles. Being friends with other YouTuber’s like Justin Escalona, you can see Church featured in other people’s videos from time to time. I would suggest watching a few of Church’s videos if you’re looking for some travel inspiration or if you enjoy binge-watching some daily vloggers in their everyday lives.

6.  Lucie Fink – Tips/Tricks/Life-Hacks

I first met Lucie during the HerCampus HerConference 2017 in New York City. After learning about how she’s a producer at Refinery 29, I decided to give her videos a try and watch them….all. Wow. Originally known for making stop-motion videos on her Instagram, Fink had curated the ‘Living With Lucie’ series on the Refinery 29 channel. With this channel, Fink posts mainly “I Tried…” posts which are suggested by fans, in which she’ll try something that fans are curious or skeptical about. Definitely take a look at her posts about healthy eating, no social media for a week, or going on a cleanse!

 

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Music, Photography, Travel, Video

Eight MUST HAVE’s When Traveling to a Music Festival

As a lot of you might know, I’ve spent the summer going to music festivals and doing various shoots with artists. Depending on the festival, you might not be allowed to bring all the things you’d want, since some of the smallest things could be considered ‘banned items’. I wanted to make this post for all of you in case you were planning on going to any future festivals, or anybody who wanted to inquire on which festivals enforce which policies. Enjoy!

  1. Sunscreen – Make sure that you always bring the smallest amount/bottle you can find. When it comes to music festivals (especially ones with huge headliners), they’re a lot like airports. The risk management teams and security at the festivals will inevitably make you throw out your tubes of sunscreen if it isn’t small enough. However, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t bring any! Avoid tan lines and sunburns by carrying around sunscreen. Also, it never hurts to make a friend by offering them some sunscreen on a hot day!3FE67385-7FB6-46BA-AA0B-DBC5C2342B60   (I would recommend using the Avene Ultra-Ligh Hydrating Sunscreen Lotion as it has broad spectrum SPF 50+ and it’s water resistant! You can either get the sunscreen through the link above on Amazon or get it through the Summer FabFitFun box! Use the code ‘UMASS’ to get $10 off your purchase!)
  2. Portable Chargers – Although this might be more important for people who make an attempt at a press pass, portable chargers are extremely useful and can prevent you not being able to reach your friends at a time where you all split up. One of the biggest pluses to having a portable charger is that some of them have a storage compartment on the back of your phone, useful when you’re storing your I.D., passes, or credit cards. The worst thing is having to dig through a huge backpack of excess items while you’re trying to pay for a drink. (I personally use the Morphie IPhone 6 Portable Charger, but I do believe Amazon and Best Buy have other awesome brands to choose from)
  3. Earplugs – This thought came to me when I was front row at a Dillon Francis concert. If you’re like me, you probably might want to get as close to the artist as possible, even if it means you’re going to be face-to-face with the artist’s speakers. It’s all about the experience, right? However, when I started shooting photos for artists that these festivals, seasoned pros would hang me some earplugs to keep your ears from ringing after the performance. Honestly, it’s probably one of the better ideas since the beginning of music festivals. You can still enjoy your concert experience, just take out the traumatic aftermath of not being able to hear anything afterwards.
  4. Tylenol – Obviously, skip this if you are totally fine and live in a region of the world where the combination of loud noises and heat don’t get you worked up. However, coming from Connecticut, we don’t do well when working in heat. Therefore, when you might get a headache, try taking a couple of tylenol. **Disclaimer: I would NOT go drinking at a festival after having Tylenol as it can cause liver damage… Just trying to keep y’all safe**
  5. Hammock – I know this is weird, but trust me. When I went to Firefly Music Festival in Delaware this year, a lot of the campers placed their hammocks in trees that were near the stages they wanted. Sure, you might not be front row, but at least  you get to relax by the stage and still listen to some of your favorite artists.
  6. Business Cards – Yes, I know this seems strange. Normally, I would say ‘screw it’ and just not bring anything business-related to a music festival. However, if you’re a social media influencer, tech savvy person, video producer, or just a guy who is trying to dabble in music production, keep some business cards on you. A lot of artist management hangs out in either VIP or General Admission areas, and it never hurts to give them your information. If you happen to have a Press or Photo pass, this is also a sweet way to end up being invited to more festivals under the affiliation of a cool company. You never know! (I personally use Moo business cards, but Vistaprint is also a good choice!)
  7. Your Planner – With a lot of artists, means a lot of running around. Similar to #6, I’m not a huge fan of walking around with business materials during a time where I’m supposed to focus on having fun. However, if you’re running around trying to capture the performances of 12 artists in one day, you need to be alert to when you need to be there, whether or not you have time to visit certain stations, and when those artists might be doing meet and greets/signings.1631FFC3-00A6-419E-B73A-ED220827E0DA(On the left, Horacio Printing Student Planner 2017-2018. On the right, Kate Spade 2018 Student Planner)
  8. Lastly, of course, you have to bring some of your closest friends – I always look back at my experiences working for festivals with a smile on my face, because a friend of mine (usually who also dabbled in film/photo) also joined me for the ride. It’s always a nice feeling to know that you can see some of your favorite artists with friends and enjoy yourself while working. Also, with such large festivals these days, you start to have trouble finding certain entrances, and a friend can always be the second pair of eyes for you when you’re under some stress.

 

I hope you all enjoyed my eight things you’ll need to bring when you head to your next music festival! If you have any ideas of what I should write about, e-mail cassidykotyla@gmail.com or just follow me on Instagram at @CasElizabethCecilia and comment your idea on one of my latest photos!

Until next time, xoxo.

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Music, Travel, Video

Obtaining Press Passes–How To Talk The Talk & E-Mail To Your Heart’s Content

One of the biggest questions I’m asked these days are how I’m able to attend a bunch of concerts, specifically over the summer. While many people are doing their 9-5pm internships in cities that result them in a massive amount of debt, I chose to waitress and instead focus on growing my brand and improving my filmmaking skills. Maybe it’s not the life I truly had asked for, but in all honesty, it’s a lot more fun than sitting in a cubicle all day slaving over my paycheck. Instead, I get to connect with hundreds of amazing artists who share the same passions that I do–creating things that people will love.

So, how did I obtain press passes? No, I didn’t have to jump any fences to sneak into concerts, nor did I pay $500 a ticket to go, either. In fact, it was quite simple. Here are some simple steps for your enjoyment.

  1. Grow your brand so that people can’t say no. Though it took practically my entire college career to grow CasElizabethCecilia, it finally got to the point in which employers and people that I’d run into would ask about it and inquire on my skill set because of what they saw. Make sure to always have a great backing of followers and connections before you approach larger-scale venues, especially if you want to get an honest response.
  2. Surround yourself with the right people. Now, going to a somewhat-rural university like I did, there were only a handful of people that I would have considered to be “top-notch” filmmakers who were also serious about their profession being filmmaking. One thing I would suggest is to reach out to people who you admire and hope for the best. I’ve ended up meeting tons of people along my travels because I’ve followed them on social media, attended one of their classes, or followed in their styles of filmmaking or editing. When you surround yourself with the right people, not only will your skill set skyrocket in its capability, but you’ll be able to have a great connection base for future gigs and opportunities.
  3. Never discourage yourself when people remind you that you’re replaceable. In this industry in particular, you’ll run into a billion other filmmakers, bloggers, authors–you name it. The point is, there’s a lot of talent just waiting to be scooped up. It’s important to keep your head up high, however. No one wants to hire someone who isn’t confident in their work, and you will feel a lot better getting a recommendation from someone when they make a remark on how pleasant you are to work with.
  4. Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone. One of the biggest fears I have is being hung up on. I’m not sure what it is, but it’s just the feeling that a total stranger doesn’t want to talk to me freaks me out. But, it’s something you need to overcome if you’re going into the filmmaking and journalism industry. It’s not good enough to e-mail someone, especially when you know a thousand other people are e-mailing that specific record company or booker every day. Think about it. Manager’s reach out and help out the artists they know first because they have personal contact to them–if you reach out to someone via e-mail and don’t get a response, they realize they don’t know who you are, and they throw you into the pile of “no’s”.
  5. Always follow up, no matter what. I’ve personally been at fault for this one, and trust me when I say I felt like an ass down the line. Following up with an artist’s management is the fine line between being a jackass and being a courteous and grateful artist. It let’s the management team know that you’re serious about your job, and therefore more likely to be obtaining future credentials or access to connections in the future. It’s a big deal, and though a lot of people don’t take it as seriously as it should be, it could make a lasting impact on someone’s career path.

 

Before you go embarking on the tough and bumpy road of obtaining a press pass somewhere, look at the artists you’re looking to shoot. Then, look to see your following. If you’re just starting out, e-mail or call the management team of the artist who’s opening for the headliner, which puts you in a relatively good position to meet not only the headliner, but the people who follow on tour with them. Smaller artists are also dying for connections and are more likely to approve your request as well.

With that being said, good luck young artists! Stay tuned for more! As always, xoxo.

 

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