It was the end of 2015, my lease was up, I had no sources of income, the previous month’s pay hadn’t come through, and I was well into being an Occupation Recruitment Agent. There was yet another job application I was supposed to make before the end of the week. This one was a little different I had to make a 2min video with a pitch for an IT product that helped society, and showed why the company should pick me.
I had already sent out 10-20 applications, visited all the workshops for CV writing, mock interviews, and I was exhausted. I couldn’t do this video right now. Plus how was I going to make it. My laptop crashed the week before and I didn’t know much about video editing. And say, I did have the equipment what was my video going to be about?
I was just so tired of giving so much for so little. So I decided, fuck it. I was just going to watch Dope, a movie I was looking forward to and had put off to make room for life. I loved the movie. But it just wasn’t the fresh look at blerds, the awesome soundtrack, great performance for Shameick Moore or the engaging story telling from Rick Famuyiwa (who also directed Brown Sugar), the best part of the movie was its message.
The whole premise of the movie is about this high school kid’s internal turmoil of being who he is against who society says he should be. All through the movie we see how his environment rejects him for being himself, a smart black kid who’s into maths and science and loves hip hop. When he tries to change his environment in going to an Ivy League college, the expectations change and he is supposed to be a respectable black kid from the projects just struggling to get by, even though he is confident enough to be the lead of his own band.
By the end of the movie, he and his friends get out of a compromising situation because they combined all the aspects of themselves, being nerds and being black in the projects. I found that incredible. And some people may think it’s corny (here’s looking at you NotADick) but it resonated with me on a level I can’t even begin to articulate.
But right after the movie, inspiration had struck, I got of my bed and got a pen and paper and begin to write all the things I am: African, immigrant, female, and a Nerd. And then I thought about what product I was going to pitch and like sunshine on a next spring day I thought, I could use an old pitch, APP, I had entered in a competition the year before. I originally made APP to win some prize money (which I didn’t by the way) but it could have been repurposed for this video. Now there was urgency to everything I was doing, an excitement of seeing where this could go. A place I didn’t know I could go but was very happy to jump on for the ride. It was visceral.
I wrote a little speech of all the things I would say in the video and just like that all the components came together. I was going to use my fairly new cell phone to record since it had a 4K feature, so the video quality was on point. I downloaded free video editing software from the Google store so that was covered. It was all gravy now. I had my video.
I went to sleep and the following I woke up with a cold. My voice was shaky and I looked quite tired. WTF, universe! I had just made a brilliant plan and now you go and throw a monkey wrench in the mix. How was I going to make this work? I decided to park the idea and look at my usual YouTube subscriptions.
I had wanted to make a channel at some point (still in the books actually) and I was trying to figure out what style of YouTuber I was going to be. I watched maybe 3 or 4 videos before I watched Mr Sunday’s new post. He is an Australian “movie reviewer” I had watched for a little over a year. He always made fun videos but never revealed his face. Instead choosing to do a voice over on an edited video of the movie news or trailer he was analysing. And just like that Eureka had struck again.
It was like I knew the lyrics to a song that I had heard for the first time. I could just use a photo of me and then try and clear my voice when I did voice over. I used Mr Sunday’s aesthetic and ran with it. The next two days rushed so quickly, I was high off of inspiration. I Google searched relevant pics and videos. I used my great love for movies and to give my video a different dimension. I thought of using the James bond theme song, but in the end the mission impossible song fit better. I spent hours making this video and had to keep editing since I went over the 2 minute limit. I only had 2 days left before the submission deadline. It was exhilarating. I knew I could do this; all that mattered was that I had something good, even great, and I made it.
I fine-tuned my video and submitted the day before the deadline. A few weeks later I followed up with the company and the day after that they told me I got the job. They sent me the paperwork and I was to start January 2016. It was unbelievable that the deflated woman completely indifferent to the job application process was a forgotten memory. She had been replaced with this luminous beckon of potential that is me.
All I needed was a little inspiration.
Edited by Sweet&Bubbly
Pictures from Google search