TEN TUESDAY: 10 Favorite Vloggers and a Bit About The #NewVloggerArmy

A few weeks ago I entered the vlog talent search on Geek and Sundry.  I didn’t advance to round two but there are a few things I will take away from this experience. What was really surprising to me was how respectful and inclusive everyone was in this competition.  The forums on Geek and Sundry had things like a Vlogger Dance Party, hangouts, and general crazy self-promotion ideas. What came out of the community, has to be the best thing about this.  Thanks to one vlogger, we have discovered that Geek and Sundry’s ulterior motive in this talent search.

Ladies and Gentlemen, let me introduce you to #NewVloggerArmy.

What is #NewVloggerArmy? You ask. It’s where the geeks take over the internet with their obsessions. A good number of people have expressed that they were going to continue their vlogs regardless. So here I am giving you my next #TenTuesday with a list of awesome vloggers, both still in contention for a slot on Geek and Sundry, but many not.

1. Kiri Callagan — Kiri Callagan’s vlog Wit & Whimsy is going to cover a variety of subjects. To give you an idea she’s already covered misused words, ninjas, and kitchen chemistry. I have had a few conversations with Kiri over Twitter and almost every single time she manages to get a song stuck in my head. She’s bubbly and lots of fun to watch.

2. Dael Kingsmill — The last time I picked up any sort of mythology was in high school and it was the Odyssey. I had no desire to read that and I haven’t thought much about it since, but I do like mythology and so Dael’s “The Story of Sissy Face” intrigued me. Of course it never occurred to me that it meant Sisyphus. I originally clicked on it because I have a dog named Sissy with an adorable face, but I don’t regret clicking.

3. Kristen Brumley (Stay In Character) — Before this vlog competition I had only heard of LARPing in the context of  Good Luck Charlie, where they ridiculed it. (Honestly, it is starting to make me think that the Disney channel cannot embrace geekery or niche hobbies at all.) Kristen’s vlog however, is a vlog about LARPing told through LARPing characters. I could say more but it really speaks for itself. Plus, it got picked up by LARPing.org and will be on their channel once a month starting in September.

4. Scott Tumilty (Scott’s Old School Pixel Party) — He started playing bad games while drunk but now this Scotsman from Glasgow is…still doing that.  Scott’s audition video and second round video are hilarious. However, while voting was happening he did a voting vlog every day. THAT IS A LOT OF VLOGS!  Take a  visit to his channel and watch the crazy unfold.

5.  RandomliNikki Her video happened to be about Nostalgia but Nikki’s channel has many more videos. Some of my favorite are about her giving her future child advice, but they are so funny and that kid is going to be so entertained (when it ultimately exists).  Plus she just wants to brighten your day.

6.  Paige Lavoie I love art and I have never consider making a comic but Paige has inspired me to give it a chance.  I need to do her challenge still but I think this might be constructive to my writing.

7. Joseph Knitt — I spent my senior year studying Gothic novels. Castles are an essential part. Plus I really love the novel Frankenstein. So his vlog seemed to encompass things that I loved. Plus castles in general enchant me and he has a great delivery and hilarity.

8. Mitch Hutts (Critical Hit Cocktails) — Four words. Drinks and video games. I don’t play lots of video games but I do like mixing drinks.

9.  Sarah Braun (Big Damn TV Geek) I’ve know Sarah for a couple years through Twitter. We actually met via a Whedony chat about Dollhouse. We are geeky for television, so it is no surprise she is on this list.  In her audition video she listed five shows she loved that are not on TV anymore (yes including ALL of Joss Whedon).

10. 2 Broke Geeks (Omar and Mia) — Hobbies are expensive. Being a geek doesn’t have to be.  2 Broke Geeks gives you tips and trips for how to save money and be a geek at the same time.

So there is a list of ten vloggers I enjoy watching. If you are looking for more to check out, look at Jens Reinking’s channel. He has a vlog series about how to be a better geek and also hosts these cool things called #GeekendHangouts every Saturday. There were so many vloggers in this competition that I probably could have made this list several times over but the best advice I can give you is to get out there and explore.  There are so many people out there who vlog about all kinds of things.

Regarding my own vlog. I am hoping to keep it up and I am going to release one video a week. I am not sure what schedule it will be on, but I am looking forward to fangirling and sharing things that are just awesome with you. I’ve got some rebranding that is going to happen and maybe more. Keep an eye out and I will let you know when the photography stuff begins again.

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The Day Has Come: The Last Day to Vote on the Geek and Sundry Vlog You Like the Best (And I offer a bribe for votes!)

To my followers and friends. I know I have probably been a pain in the butt with the number of times my Geek and Sundry voting link has come across your screen. Quick update on the status of my standing in the competition. The top vlog on the leaderboard has 4,000 votes, I don’t even a tenth of that.  But when the voting went live, I decided that I wasn’t going to go down without a fight. Current stats put the likelihood of me being in the Top 30 for one of Geek and Sundry’s ten new vlog spots is something like 1 in 32.  (Better than my odds of winning the lottery.) So, long story short, I am not apologizing for the constant shameless self promotion, but I am now offering you a chance to be rewarded for all you support.

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Waiting by Lauren Busser

Over the past week I have made bonus videos for my followers every 100 votes.  Since I am just shy of 300 I have made a 100 vote and a 200 vote bonus video.

In addition to my 300 vote bonus vlog I am going to spend Friday making a “Thank You” video.  What will be in this thank you video you ask? I thought I would thank anyone who voted for me with a brief mention. The closest thing I can think to relate this to is Sam Carter’s eulogy for Dr. Fraiser in “Heroes (Part II)” from Stargate SG-1.  If you happen to have no idea what I am talking about watch the below YouTube video and then imagine it being delivered without the death premise.

If you want, what I need you to do is vote for my video and and then either leave your name and a link in the comments or tweet me with the name you want mentioned. This is also your chance to promote your own project since I will be posting links and annotating the cheese out of this video. 

Additionally, I will be making and photographing margarita cupcakes (yes the recipe actually calls for tequila) and making a mini monster-mash stop motion. 

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So vote and many rewards will be beamed your way. Once again I thank you guys for your support, and regardless of if I make it onto the next phase of not I am hoping to continue my vlogs, either on a regular or semi-regular basis. (Somehow I will post a schedule.)

Remember, vote here and leave a message in my ask and I will be sure to vote for you. Until those videos I just want to thank you guys so much and I appreciate everything you have done to get me thus far.

TEN TUESDAY: Ten Reasons The World Needs Another Photography Vlog

There are a lot of photographers out there and there are a fair share of photography vlogs. Why is this one different? Because this isn’t just about how to take a photo and how to use filters in Instagram, but it is also about the growing relationship between humans and technology. So here are ten reasons why you need to vote for my submission on Geek and Sundry Vlogs.

1. Name a Piece of Technology that You Didn’t Want to Kick in the Rear When It Glitched!  The reason I name everything in my life is because when things go south, I need something to call the blasted thing in order for my anger to go away. It’s kind of like that Mythbusters episode when they test if swearing helps reduce pain, except in this case it’s just so that I don’t take my frustration out on other people.

And in case you were wonder.

My car is named Gina.
My cell is named Beverly.
The Canon AE-1 featured in the vlog is Adama.
My old laptop is called Galactica (and later Galactica Imposter because it was the same model just a loaner).
My new computer is named Voyager.
And of course if you watch my video, you know my new DSLR is named Cain.

2. Photography is a life skill. If you are getting ready to type a counter argument, stop! No, really stop! How many times do you wish that you could have taken a better photo of your family or of something in nature or captured the perfect candid shot? Did you say yes to any of those? Good, relax those fingers. If you said no, then go ahead and type away we can engage in arguments in the comments.

The ability to capture what you want in an image is important, it’s why SLRs are awesome because they let you control everything, but even point and shoot cameras have the same basic controls to manipulate. There is a lot to cover and if you have a question on how to take a better photo without photoshop, I want to hear from you. Comment on the channel or the video or something. I want to help.

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The Humming Meadow by Lauren Busser

3.  You can Hack a Camera I’ve never actually done it there are people who hack cameras to get them to do all kinds of cool stuff. If that sounds like something cool, leave a comment and I will see what I can get it to do. There are even some really cool camera app hacks that you can play with, including one that trains your cat to take photos. (Yes I am serious!)

4. Lighting is Hard, Dude Not gonna lie. I paid attention to the shadow unit in elementary school but only so much of that experience stayed with me. So here are some questions that you can ask: What time of day is the best time to take a photo? How can I make shadows exaggerated if that is what I want to go for? What is the best kind of lighting for a interior photo? All of these are legitimate questions that can be addressed.  (Also see reason six.)

5. That iPhone in your Hand Has a Pretty Decent Camera The world of iPhoneography is vast and has a lot of noise but if you use your cell phone camera right you can make a great deal of beauty and art. I love experimenting with apps, playing with filters and editing programs. There are a ton of apps on my phone that do this and they continue to release more. These are things I am passionate about that I can talk about with you and would love to discuss with you.

6. Play that Funky Music White Boy Okay I am not sure how a song from the 70s fits in with this, but honestly there are also ways to filter your flash and do all sorts of really cool experimental lighting that we can explore. There is a pocket device out on the market that calls itself a “Light show in your pocket.” Yep, you can create a disco with this little thing. Imagine shooting some birthday shots with that up your sleeve!

7.  There Are Ways to Hack that Fancy Digital Camera to Do Really Cool Things: So years ago there were these awesome toy cameras and now many people want those affects with their digital SLRs. So lenses are popping up and filters and all these crazy cool things that give you effects like light leaks and such without having to carry around a toy camera in addition to your main camera. (Also lenses are the bomb!)

8. Cute doggies!!! There are two cute rescue dogs in my life who will probably make an appearance in the vlog. One has already been featured in my 100 votes video. The other will come out to play at 300, and that one has a lot of personality. Here are some pics as a tease:

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9. You know it is time to conquer the world of video when you get texts commenting on how you are everywhere. No seriously, I got a text from my mom telling me that she googled me last week and I seem to be all over the internet. So I am not Big Brother (or Betty White) but I figured it might be good to invade YouTube too and if I can make people laugh with my frustration, that’s excellent.

10. I am not above bribery baked goods.  So among the other talents I have, I bake pretty awesome food. I like photographing it and all of that stuff too and if I come up with a new recipe, maybe I will make a vlog about how to photograph your pastry creations. Lots of opportunity here.

So if you need another reason of have any questions for me you can comment here, or on the video, and you can also like and subscribe to the channel. And as always, vote here! You can vote once a day until June 27th so keep voting and another update will be coming soon.

VOTING DAY #3: Status of the Geek and Sundry Vlog Submission

Big Sis, Little Sis by Lauren Busser
Big Sis, Little Sis by Lauren Busser

So this is voting day three.

Overwhelming the response I get in regards to the video is that it is awesome. I wasn’t expecting anywhere near that response. As I write this the video is comfortably sitting around 72 votes. I have decided that after I reach certain benchmarks I am going to release bonus videos. Two of which will be features on my best models and one of which will be the outtakes from the submission itself. The first one will occur after I reach 100 votes. So if you haven’t voted today please take a second and vote for my vlog.

You might wonder what future episodes of this vlog will include. This vlog is about photography and how you get a better photo. Now you can read manuals about that all day and night but when it comes down to it the information can be pretty dry. What I am proposing with this vlog is not just an instructional series but a comical series. What is currently known and Cain and I, is a story that is going to involve me fighting with my camera. Verbally, I mean. I won’t throw my camera against the wall no matter how angry I get, that is just camera abuse.  Plus it will probably be the end of the vlog.

There is also opportunity in this vlog for audience participation. If we learn something new I want you guys to be able to submit to the Tumblr page and we can interact there. There are lots of photo challenges out there including photo-a-day but I also want to delve into all the photos we have already taken with nostalgia challenges and things like that.

In the Wind by Lauren Busser
In the Wind by Lauren Busser

So if you have voted today, your task is to go and like the video or subscribe to the channel. If the thought of committing terrifies you. Comment on the video via the YouTube channel. Remember you can’t vote via YouTube, you have to vote through the Geek and Sundry page with my submission.

I’ll make another update later today or tomorrow either in the form of a video message or a text post like this one. Until then, keep up the support, interact with me, and please send the Geek and Sundry link to all of your friends, family, barbers, babysitters, gardeners, friends of your parents, friends of your children, even any household pets that are capable of using a computer.

Remember you can vote once a day until June 27th so please keep visiting, keep voting, and keep taking pictures.

Vote for My Geek and Sundry Submission

Camera Girl by Lauren Busser

So you see that girl with the long brown hair? That’s me four years ago, around the time I first learned what a single-lens reflex camera was.  I have been taken photos in some form since I was eight but it was always a hobby until now.

So a few weeks ago I found out that Geek and Sundry was looking to bring ten new vloggers (video bloggers) into their family. I decided to get brave and submit one to be part of the channel. The two big requirements: 1) be a geek (which I am) and 2) be passionate about something. So I started a vlog about me and my new camera and submitted the intro video to Geek and Sundry to be posted.

The next phase is voting and this is where you can help me. I need you to go to my link on the Geek and Sundry site and vote. You can also leave comments on my YouTube channel and subscribe to the channel so that you can get future vlog updates.  If I get into the Top 30, then I move onto the second round of voting and the Top 10 from there get placed on the channel.

So if you like photography, personified objects, or maybe you just want to learn more about what a DSLR camera can do…go to those links and vote, comment, and subscribe.   Me and Cain (my Canon) will thank you.

Misplaced Housewife by Lauren Busser

Now you might be asking yourself: “Lauren, what the bloody hell made you do this?” Well you have my photography mentor to thank for that a little bit. I was always planning on making a youtube channel that would show off my work somewhat but I had never planned for my face to actually appear on it.  Geek and Sundry’s contest forced me to be a little bit creative and come up with this concept of me and my camera in sort of a domestic relationship.  I wasn’t entirely sold on it, but now thinking about it, it promises to be comical, provide lots of audience participation, and it should be a wild ride.

So I am anxious to continue regardless, but taking a second to vote on Geek and Sundry would mean that the show will be more regulated, so if the idea of me fighting with an SLR intrigues you  (even if you just want to laugh at me) please check out the video and vote.

In the meantime, while you are voting and waiting to hear the results, please visit the current vloggers on Geek and Sundry Vlogs. There is everything from thumbwrestling to writing, comics, and then there’s just Jeff. I am a fan and these people are awesome so check them out.