Learning the Ropes

Wearing multiple hats at the same time is pretty tricky. It’s even harder when you are learning how to wear each of those hats at the same time. Not only am I learning how to use editing software, film decent (still working on that) quality videos, build and manage a website, build and promote a YouTube channel… I am also working a full-time job as a furniture assembler. How am I supposed to find the time to do all of that and balance the other responsibilities in my life?

Up until recently I was an avid gamer… for the most part. I have an obsession with picking parts for theoretical computers to build (I have actually built 7 at this time). Or just loafing around watching episodes on Netflix. But, now the obsession has started taking over. Everyday I am checking our (me and my dads) YouTube channel to see how many hits it has received. I am researching ways to improve our viewership through SEO optimizations, custom video thumbnails, and cross platform advertising. We even went so far as to purchase a subscription to a YouTube helper extension called TubeBuddy, which has already proven to be a very handy tool. I have developed the YouTube itch, but now I need to really dig into the website side of things as that is where a whole load of work is waiting for me.

All I really need to do is keep poking away at the website, familiarize myself with the layout of Word Press and each individual plugin that his site over at Thak Ironworks currently has running. How much work could it really be to learn how to use Word Press for an established business site? Well I am sure it is no small feat, but I look forward to the journey!

If you would like to check out Thak’s Youtube channel you can find it here.

Where to begin…

As a kid I always wanted to be a game programmer. I thought by the time I was in my mid twenties I would have a job in the game industry…

Life happened, college came and passed (dropped out after half a year due to lack of money). I tried learning programming on my own but I found I didn’t have the motivation without the guidance of a classroom. I’ve had many non-computer related jobs over the years, from kitchen to woodworking, and while I enjoy(ed) the work for the most part, it didn’t take long to realize it wasn’t what I wanted to do with my life.

My dad called me recently to make a proposal. He is a well known blacksmith who has been working at his craft for 30 years now. Thak Ironworks is his business, and I have been a part of it for most of my life. He forges railings, armor, tools, weapons… just about anything you can name, he even makes armor. About 15 years ago (more or less) he started offering courses at his shop for both aspiring and seasoned blacksmiths alike. The one thing his business has really been lacking over these years though is an online presence. Don’t get me wrong, he already has an established website, and a handful of videos up on YouTube, but he knew it was time to start growing his business. That’s where this phone call comes in.

He called me at the end of 2018 to ask if I would help him with his YouTube channel. Ironically I was looking for another source of income at the time, so of course I jumped on the opportunity. Thing is, I have zero experience with filming and editing beyond the very little I learned a decade ago in high school… it seemed like it would be a fun experience and I needed the extra cash.

So a few months later, here we are with a handful of videos published (mostly tutorials) and a fairly substantial growth in his YouTube viewership (by substantial I mean about 100 more subscribers) mostly thanks to a video about making a Greek shield I had no part in. We have learned a ton, and I have realized I still have a lot more to learn before I am either a proficient cameraman or editor, but my skills will do for now. Ideas our rolling in from viewers and friends, not to mention both our minds seem to be pushing out ideas like crazy. Things are starting to look a little promising.

Now, a little over a week ago, I got another message from my dad. His webmaster was stepping down and had recommended that I take over. Guess what? I have no experience with web design beyond what little I learned in high school and a class I almost never went to in college. That’s right, here I am again, learning another skill whilst also honing my skills in the YouTube industry.

So, I decided to start this blog.

Why am I doing all of this you may ask? Well firstly I need the money and my dad is paying me better than my current job. Also, if our online efforts prove fruitful, this could lead to full-time work that would be far more flexible for me and my personal life. This could be a life changing opportunity for me, now I just need to put the effort in.

I’ve always been the kind of person to start something and then quite when it becomes to frustrating or difficult. I realize with this opportunity my life could change, maybe that is all the motivation I need to take this to the next level.

Please, if you have any suggestions for me, whether it be content to research, improvements in my writing, or just a way to stay motivated, I would love to hear (read) them.