Hunyo Animation

How A Graduating Student Earns Through Animation.

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February 24, 2022

Who are you and what kind of content do you create?

My name is Hunyo, a content creator based in the Philippines, and I'm the owner of Hunyo Animation channel on YouTube. I do story time animation that is based on my own experience. As of now, I can't do my YouTube full time since I'm a graduating student, but once I finish, I will do it full time so that I can post animation more frequently for my audience to enjoy. 

All of my animation videos are all made by myself. Getting a team for now is not on my list since I'm still figuring out my limit on doing quality animation by myself.  

Coming up with the name Hunyo Animation was simple since “Hunyo” is the Tagalog translation of “June” which is my nickname and it just makes sense since my contents fall under the category of Pinoy animations.  

Let's go down memory lane, tell us your backstory! 

Before I start making videos on YouTube, I only do simple animation and drawings in my spare time. I always draw doodle arts while trying to come up with an original character that I can use when doing simple comics or illustrations. Simplifying a character really took me several tries before I came up with what I use now in my animation.   

I started to try to work as a freelance animator so that I can develop my discipline on making videos and also to gain experience in making long animation videos in a short amount of time.  I was overwhelmed at first since that was my first time working on a project that is beyond my usual amount of tasks. But after getting the experience I needed and having a background on making animation, that was the time I tried to venture by myself. I was so inspired by other creators on YouTube doing smooth and clean animation while telling the world their story and I told myself "I can do it too, I have the skills and talent, I can totally handle it" and I also keep telling myself to myself that "if they can do it, so do I" and so I did, At first, I try to make a short animation and post it on Facebook to see how my friends will react to it  and after a while I push myself to produce a long story animation that I can post on YouTube and I didn't expect how fast my animation will get recognized my people. All the positive feedback I see from them keeps me motivated and wants to do more animation to see how far I can get by pursuing this career.

How do you brainstorm ideas for your content and your advice in getting the creative juice flowing.

Coming up with the idea about videos is somewhere between easy and difficult, it was easy because all I needed to do was think about the experience that I can share with my audience, but it is hard at the same time because not all my life stories will be entertaining to a lot of people. Sometimes while I am doing an animation and I come up with the video idea, I write it on a note for me to remember when I'm done making my current animation.  

Taking notes about the ideas that randomly come up on my mind was a handful of hobbies of mine because after I'm done with my animation, it's hard for me to remember the idea that I'm thinking while I'm working on a previous video.

The best tip that works well for me when coming up with ideas that I tell my audience is that don't overthink an idea, make it simple because simple can be more, you just have to be consistent in what you do. 

What are the tools and platforms you use to help with your brand?

With making videos, I usually start recording my audio then edit it to remove the dead air part of my audio. Then I will proceed to put it on animation software to start making animation.  I don't do storyboards since I can imagine how my story will flow and that is the composition I need on every scene. After the animation process, I can finally edit the final animation by adding some sound effects, cutting some scenes, and putting some background music. 

My audience can easily check my work on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and Tiktok. To manage all of these accounts, I use sticky notes and always write the important event, project, or ideas that i need to work on and until now i keep doing it since it was really helpful for me.

What were your fears starting out? How did you handle it? 

When starting out with making videos on YouTube, I told myself that whatever the outcome is, I will be grateful and accept what I received. Handling negative or hate comments are easier for me because it's not affecting me since I always choose to ignore the bad comments that people say to my videos because at the end of the day I'm the one who's gaining and not them, plus posting on YouTube over a year, I didn't get a lot of negative comments so I'm really grateful for that.  

About my fears on creating content,  I think it is when no one watches my work when I post a video, because my audience is so important to me that I want to improve more for them to see how well I do on making my videos on YouTube. I handle it by making smoother animation and continue improving myself because improving my skills can help me in my work and also can attract more audience to watch my animations.

How did you build your brand to where it is now, take us through your process.

Posting on YouTube weekly wasn't easy for me since my content is pure animation and I'm making it smooth and clean. That is why it usually takes me 2 to 3 weeks to finish an animation. But like I said, I'm a graduating student. That's why I can't focus on my animation because I need to know my priorities. 

In starting my YouTube career, I have already prepared what I need on making animation, like drawing tablets, computers, and software that I will be needing when I start making animation videos. Also, learning animation was the hardest part for me since I'm a self taught artist/animator.I still remember that it took me a year to finally create my YouTube channel because I really did take my time thinking about how will handle my channel and what characters and stories I will tell on my subscribers, but after 3 months of doing YouTube I have already reached 30,000 subscribers and it's all because of the video i created that was titled "Barilan" which is the story about how me and my friends play pellet guns when we were still a kid. After posting that video I was so happy how great my YouTube channel was getting so many subs in such a small period of time. When I created my brand account on YouTube, I expected it to take a year before it gained attention, but it turned out that a lot of people like the content I have created.   

Looking back through the challenges I faced when I'm just starting with YouTube, I think the hardest challenge I faced was how shy I was with voice acting. I wasn't used to hearing my own voice on recording because I wasn’t confident enough on how my voice sounds but I realized it wasn't that difficult because doing animation with my voice on it and listen for it scene by scene made me used to hearing myself and somehow I got comfortable hearing myself and doing much better voice acting that I was before. As of now, I have been a YouTube content creator for over a year and I know I will encounter a lot of challenges in the future, but I am confident that I can handle it and continue my journey on my YouTube career.  

For someone who wants to get into content creation, what is your advice?

For those who want to get into what I do, I would be lying if I tell you that it was easy, there are always challenges on the way. all you have to do was to build your confident and keep doing what you love, don't push yourself, just keep in mind that we all come from the same level all we need to do was to improve our skills, it may take a long time for others but it doesn't mean that you won't get where you want to be. 

Based on my experience on doing this kind of content on youtube, I don't think I have any regrets because if it weren't for those experiences I don't think I would be in this situation. It may sound cliche but it's true. If you're having trouble improving yourself or your content, try getting out of your comfort zone, you can't grow if you stick to your circle, you have to experiment a little to see how things will turn out. just keep learning because learning doesn't stop at any point of life, improve while you can, do more and just enjoy it. For me, doing animation takes a lot of time but seeing the outcome of my work gives me a satisfaction that really makes me happy and somehow inspires me on what more I can do.

How did you finally commit to X platform rather than your regular day job?

I did commit to YouTube when the pandemic happened, there is nothing much to do so I took that opportunity to start doing animation. I have plenty of time when starting out so I don't need to worry about other tasks, plus I didn't feel any pressure back then, But as soon as I progressed on YouTube my time on working my animations eventually got limited because of the resuming  school classes. At the time I really needed to work on my schedule so that even though I have to continue my studies,  I can still work on my animation to post it in the time schedule I set on posting videos on YouTube. 

Gaining a certain amount of money wasn't my problem because like what i've said, i did prepare everything i needed before commiting on posting videos on youtube. 

Tell us your biggest obstacles you have experienced in your content creation journey. And how did you bounce back?

I can't deny that I have faced some obstacles in pursuing this career. One of those was my problem about having a lack of discipline about making progress with my animation. For those who don't know, creating an animation really takes a lot of time and patience especially if you want it to be a smooth animation and there are times that I get really distracted  doing something else that I didn't notice that the time I set on making my animation is already running out. I got to the point that I'm stressed out because of the other work or tasks that I still need to do.  

Comparing myself to other creators was also one of the problems that I encountered. I can see their progress faster than I did. That made me lose my confidence about how my channel will progress and I can't help thinking that maybe I'll be stuck at where I am now. Going through those phases made me realize that I really can't compare myself to other creators since we all do different things and all of us are unique in our own way. I learned that we all have our own path and comparing ourselves with others isn't gonna help up progress. However, we can make it a guide on what goal we want to achieve or what path we want to follow because at the end of the day we are still the ones who make our own decisions. 

Tell us your best milestones in being a content creator.

Doing YouTube for over a year, I have reached some milestone  that really surprised me because I never thought that I would be at that moment in my life. The first highlight that I can share was one of my animation videos that reached 1.1 million views on YouTube. I was so happy and surprised that it will reach that amount of views in no time and it even got into the YouTube recommendation a few weeks after I posted it. For a while whenever I'm uploading a video, a lot of the audience really engages to my animation, and that includes other content creators as well, even the ones I look up to. Oh, how I wish I could make you feel the joy and excitement that I was experiencing that day. Also, one of the greatest milestones that recently happened was the time that my YouTube channel hit 100,000 subscribers. It was one of the major highlights in my YouTube career so far and I'm so excited about what more I could achieve by being a YouTube content creator.  

Having these milestones really made an impact on me by making me realize how far did I get from where I started and even though i've come long way, i will never forget from how i started, on how made my animation back then and how can a simple me became someone who is known for something that i made. 

What are your marketing strategies to grow your brand?

When I started doing YouTube, it was all simple, all I need to do was to record an audio, add animation to it and publish it on YouTube, but I know I can't progress when I keep doing the same thing over and over, so for me while doing a little experimenting with my videos to see how will my audience will react to it, but at the same time I also need to keep in mind that my videos have to be unique since I don't want my audience to feel that I'm just copying other creators content and at the same time I want to make new content because I want to be unique.   

Listening to my audience is also a great way to know what content I need to do and avoid because they are the one who is making your channel progress, it's like what a lot of creators were saying about "without the audience, they were nothing", And it's true. Listening to them can be your guide whenever you have to continue what you're doing or you have to change the contents you are making. I remember I told my fans  I am going to create a story animation, but they were the ones who's gonna suggest what it was about. It was fun because it's important to connect to my audience. Collaborating with other creators was also one of the fun experiences I had on YouTube. It's exciting how they will make my character in their style and what story I'm going to write. I have done plenty of collabs on other creators but on my own channel, I only did one collab and it was one of the content creators that really inspires me and that YouTube creator is "Arkin". He also does story time animation and one of my inspirations is doing YouTube animation contents.

I also did start posting on art groups and animation groups about my YouTube channel to promote it and for them to know that I am doing this kind of content using this kind of animation. I did that for a while, but I eventually stopped. A lot of the audience begin to share my videos with their friends and promote it to other groups. 

How do you handle brand deals and sponsorships? 

Talking about sponsors, I didn't reach out to sponsors directly, I did however talk to them "baka naman" on one of my videos titled "Online Shopping". "Baka naman" is a phrase we say here in the Philippines to tell someone that maybe they could do something for us that we want and I was surprised that it worked. One of the well known drawing tablet brands reached out to me offering a tablet in exchange for a tablet review. It was an amazing experience working with them because not only did I receive a brand new drawing tablet from them, I also got the chance to give my audience a gift that was given by my sponsor. 

There is a lot of sponsor proposals that I receive in my email, but even some of those are tempting, I can't just accept it right away, because some sponsors are not fitted with what I do on my channel that is why I only accept those who offer the things that I can use in making videos and improving my channel like software I can use and recommend to my fans, drawing tablet that can be really help me create animation, in summary just pick the sponsors that can help you improve, Because not always having a lot of sponsorship can help you. My advice on handling sponsorship or brand deals is that don't rush on saying yes to all the sponsors and to check if they are legit  because I know people who got scammed by shady emails that offer sponsorships. They will send you an email that they will play you and send you a link or something that you need to download but little we don't know that those links contain spyware that gives them the ability to hack your account. I have learned my lesson on that particular scenario. I was aware of malicious links and downloadable files, but I still clicked it and that resulted in me losing my YouTube account, but thankfully a lot of people, friends, and fans helped me. I'm so grateful for it because I can really tell that they genuinely care for me.  

What is your monthly earning from content creation? 

Of course, being a successful content creator really pays off in the end. The first income that I received on my YouTube reached five digits on my local currency and it really did help me a lot especially in upgrading my equipment on animating. I upgraded my computer, and improved my setup so that I am comfortable working on my animation. Also, it enables me to help my parents pay utility bills and also pay for my studies. It can be really helpful for you just to be consistent and keep making videos for your fans to enjoy, just take it from me and I hope I inspire you and give you knowledge on being a YouTube content creator. 

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