How often has it occurred to you in everyday life that- ‘Hey, I wish I could get that moment on video!’
We do have such moments don’t we? And even though we do have those huge selfie smart phones and huger DSLRs but let’s face it, we don’t really go out there ever with the intent of creating good quality content that a complete stranger would love to watch!
Why am I telling you all this again?
Well that’s because we had the opportunity of catching up with one such YouTube content creator who began like any of; documenting travel experiences, recording short fun videos but is nothing less than a YouTube sensation today with over 1.5 lakh subscribers and have lakhs of views for every video!
Presenting, Mumbiker Nikhil YouTube’s favourite ‘Motovlogger’!
“Hold up. Motovlo… what?”
Well, Nikhil Sharma or Mumbiker Nikhil as he is more popurlarly known as is a Motovlogger. He creates video content of his everyday travel experiences, everyday life experiences and elaborate road trips, all by himself.
“Wait, I’m confused. He shoots videos of himself traveling, that’s why he is famous?”
Well, it’s one thing clicking a selfie at the beach and completely another, creating extensive travel videos- be it riding the motorbike from Kashmir to Kanyakumari or flying a drone in Bali that gives the viewer the feeling of being a part of the journey throughout and not just a passive viewer!
Don’t believe us? Well, here’s a video for an example!
A Travelogue of Nikhil's Bali Trip
One of Nikhil's Kashmir To Kanyakumari Videos
Now having established Mumbiker Nikhil if you hadn’t known him yet, let’s get to know the ‘just another middle-class ordinary guy’ as he calls himself, a bit more.
Q. Can you tell us how you began vlogging?
A. Fortunately enough, I had previously worked with Qatar Airways for some time which gave me the opportunity to travel around the globe a bit. I used to document my travel often back then.
A few years ago I had taken this trip to Ajmer where I shot a few videos of my journey. That’s when I thought to myself “Why not make more such videos!”
Q. When did you realize that your vlogs are becoming a big deal?
A. I have been very lucky to have constant support from a lot of my viewers. As and how my subscriber count began to increase, I understood the gravity of it. Once I crossed the 20,000 subscriber mark, I got the feeling of things getting more serious.
Q. Can you share an experience that scared you the most during your solo biking tours
A. I remember, in my initial days of touring as I munched more miles, my confidence began to increase. On one such solo trip to Bangalore, in the middle of the highway, my bike’s chain clipped off and got detached, leaving me stranded in the dark alone, in the middle of nowhere with no idea of the local language. I asked around a bit in one of the shops nearby but they didn’t seem to be of much help.
Just when I was about to lose hope though, a complete stranger on a bike pushed me and the bike a little down the road to a workshop where I got the problem fixed in a jiffy. He didn’t even wait for a moment for me to thank him.
Q. Though we love your vlogs, it sure must be a funny experience pointing a DSLR at yourself and talking into the camera. What are some of the remarks you get out in the public?
A. Initially I would find it really awkward to hold a big camera pointed at myself. However, soon I stopped caring. I just carry on with my vlog no matter what looks I get. Very recently, I was at a coffee shop in the airport, vlogging with the camera pointed at me. I realized that a police man was looking at me for quite some time. I just paused for a moment and waved him a ‘hi’, to which he replied with a smile and walked away soon after.
Q. What would you say the future holds for Youtube in India
A. In the coming years, YouTube is going to become bigger than you and I can imagine. From vlogs, to other forms of content creations, there is going to be a huge increase in terms of content volume and its viewership.
Q. Would you say that the success of people-friendly content lies in the fact that the current generation has a general rejection towards main stream media?
A. I wouldn’t say that the current generation has a rejection towards main stream media, I’d put it that the current generation’s acceptance of people-friendly media has increased.
Here's Nikhil's vlog of his visit to Kolkata
Q. How would you describe what you do to the elderly, say to our parents?
A. Oh that is a very difficult scenario. The generation before ours finds it difficult to relate to this particular medium of communication.
Q. Sticking to the difficult question, when is go home, what/who would I describe you (Mumbiker Nikhil) to my mother as?
A. Haha, you can tell her that you just met your ‘Online Friend’ as I believe through my vlogs, my everyday life is an open book, making me a friend to all my viewers.
Q. Lastly, how does it feel to have lakhs of complete strangers know so much about you and idolize you?
A. This is a feeling I will forever cherish. What you see in my vlogs is exactly how I am in real life. There is nothing fancy nor unrealistic about it. While riding, like any other rider I feel cold/hot, my face gets dirty, my hair gets ruined. I don’t have a make-up artist to prep me up before I face the camera, I come as I am, as any other rider would me. That is how I can make a viewer who has already been to where I’m riding in the video say “Dekha, I was telling you. The same thing happened with me when I was riding there!”
Here's a video journey of Nikhil's Kolkata visit by Sourav Sarkar, a budding vlogger from the city
Pictures: Desi Broadcast & Sourav Sarkar