Tuesday, April 12, 2011

SeaNanners For President and My 15 Seconds of YouTube Excitement

I haven't written a post in a while, but really wanted to document my experience when my "A Blurb: SeaNanners Gets Serious" vid gained a lot of attention briefly. Also just wanted to give bit of a back story of why I was inspired to make this video. If you haven't seen it, I've posted it just below :)

I guess I'll start at the very beginning. For a little while I've been trying to teach myself After Effects in my spare time. It's been a challenge with the little free time I do have juggling work, planning birthdays, planning farewells, planning baby showers, being a bridesmaid, spending time with friends and family, necessary chores and life in general haha. I'm at "that age" where life is exploding in my face. Being a young adult is sure something, but I'm making the most of it while I can before my next phase of adulthood haha. Anyways continuing on :P...

For a long time I really wanted to make a motion typography video. Then one day I noticed a new SeaNanners video in my subscriptions box. I tuned in and listened to his thoughts and just found myself really happy with the message he was conveying about life - how each of us fit in the world. I've had similar thoughts before, but it was just nice to see some positivity and wisdom being spread out into the world. I don't think enough people on YouTube really do this, especially people who have huge fan bases that can take advantage of it and do some good with it. Unfortunately this particular video has been set to private and can no longer be viewed. This was most likely done as he is a YouTube partner and he used copy-written music in the background which conflicts with the partnership program rules.

Now some of you may not be familiar with SeaNanners. SeaNanners is Adam Montoya who started posting Call of Duty gameplay/commentary on YouTube and over a period of time he started gaining a huge audience because he's exceptionally good at the game and has a great attitude and outlook on life. I came across one of his commentaries on the "Most Viewed" section called Uno, Dos, Tres, Quatro...I think. I found it to be very enjoyable to listen to his random thoughts about women and cooking - I guess he was asking his audience what he should make a video about, if they would want more specific CoD tips and tricks or general life chats and updates. At this point I think he was starting to open up more on YouTube and started connecting with his viewers which drew me in. I'm not huge on FPS's, not that I wouldn't play if I had the opportunity but I'm not really one to sit and watch CoD tips and tricks since I don't play that particular game. My all time fav FPS though has to be GoldenEye 007 for N64...old school I know but that game has some very fond memories for me...like feeling proud after the moment where I played through the train level without any assistance from my older sisters, making up the code phrase "do you want to kill me?" to start up a multiplayer match with my sisters...oh my dad returning the game the first time claiming the game was too violent but in reality my mom wanted him to return it since it was an impulse buy, and we ended up repurchasing it at a later date :P. ANYWAYS getting caught up in memories...moving along.

This is the part where I sound like a stalker but this story has been shared before and I find it very inspiring so don't judge me! hahaha. Adam's whole YouTube thing was purely a hobby and still is. His original career path was more focused on being a filmmaker of sorts. He entered a lot of film competitions and I believe did a lot of freelancing. The economy started to suck big time and the recession happened which hurt a lot of people including him in finding more work. Times were tough - and times are still tough as a lot of people are still affected by it now, including myself - but enough about that! So he posted CoD commentary as a hobby and his audience grew to massive proportions and continues to grow today. I think I joined on when he was around or under 100K subscribers...and now he has well over 600K subs...just insane in the membrane right? So his videos were getting massive views and he was building a very loyal audience. The great people at Machinima.com caught notice and then proposed him a position as a Segment Producer for their Respawn channel. He's been doing very well ever since - making the big move from Washington to California and being part of an awesome team at Machinima. It's great to see good things happen to good people.

So yes I'm a "fan girl" although I really dislike that term lol. I'm not waving around a flag with a banana floating in the ocean or have a huge foam finger with SeaNanners written across of it - :P those are just a few of the images I get when I hear "fan girl/boy." So I really wanted to make something special as a tribute to these inspiring words, from an inspiring person and do it as part of a project in which I taught myself motion typography and other things that is After Effects.

This project took me a period of 2 weeks of working on and off of it, so I don't know how many man hours it took. I would come home from work and try to spend time on it, and there was a weekend in there where I got sick and couldn't work on it at all. After Effects crashed on me several times, and I even had another version I exported before I released the final version on YouTube. There was a lot of reworking and figuring out things in AE, and yelling at my dear ol' computer which needs some hardware updates.

I finally completed it, tweeted it out like any one of my other vids and then it all happened. HE saw it...I figured he gets a lot of @mentions so it would be buried deep under a bunch of tweets. He saw it and I guess he liked it 'cause he retweeted it out to his 100K Twitter followers, and "liked" it on YouTube...then a wave of SeaFanners (lol) were directed to my video and it blew up in to which I have called "My 15 seconds of YouTube excitement." My reaction was not one I was expecting...I was of course ecstatic...beyond ecstatic...my heart was on hyper drive, I couldn't think straight, was purely speechless...well when I wanted to talk it was jibberish hahaha. I think I received 20K hits on the first day and it rose gradually to almost 50K hits today. It received a bunch of video honors, which I'll list some of the more significant ones below:

First Day
#1 - Most Discussed (Today) - Film & Animation - Canada
#1 - Top Favorited (Today) - Film & Animation - Canada
#1 - Top Rated (Today) - Film & Animation - Canada
#1 - Top Rated (This Week) - Film & Animation - Canada
#2 - Top Favorited (Today) - Canada
#3 - Top Favorited (Today) - Film & Animation
#5 - Top Rated (Today) - Film & Animation

Second Day
#1 - Most Discussed (Today) - Film & Animation - Canada
#1 - Top Favorited (Today) - Canada (Landed me on the homepage)

#1 - Top Rated (This Week) - Film & Animation - Canada

I also got #35 Most Viewed in Canada, landing me on the 2nd Most Viewed page on the 2nd day...although I only got a screenshot of when I was #40.

This was when everything was just at an all time unbelievable moment of reality and the same time YouTube emailed me about putting ad-sense on the video (which I declined).

Although a short ride of thrill and excitement, I am forever grateful and will remember this forever. The thing that made this the most enjoyable was actually making someones day a little better. I received one comment that said something along the lines of "before this I was very depressed, now I'm feeling a lot happier." That means the world to me to have affected someone that greatly to change their day for the better :). My ultimate goal is to keep improving my motion graphics, vfx, video editing and etc skills so that I can bring my imagination to life and hopefully bring happiness to others. Anyways that's pretty much the full story. Thanks for reading if you've stuck around for this long :P. Hope you're all doing well!


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