Akash Mitra

how-i-got-my-first-paycheck

Graphic designing and video editing gave me my first paycheck

How it all started

It was two years back if I remember correctly. It was the initial stage of the pandemic lockdown. I was full-on into my preparation for the various different PhD entrances all over the country along with completing my Master’s degree. Apart from that on the side, I had recently completed a web designing and a graphic designing course just to keep my head in the game and not fall apart as a result of boredom and frustration.

Adding to that, I have been learning to make videos and edit them from various bits and bobs on YouTube and other online resources. Therefore, to keep in touch, I sort of started making videos and started posting them on YouTube. The thought process was something like this: I had a camera and my brother had a microphone (he was into music recording and stuff), and most importantly I had the resources to create a good-looking video; so I should do it. It was as simple as that.

So, the first video I made was about Covid as it was hot off the press back then. I had hit publish on YouTube and forgot about it. Then I made another Covid-19 video. Eventually, I started making videos quite often. I was never interested in numbers. The views and count of subscribers never mattered to me. All I wanted was to show people my skill in designing and video making. This continued for a whole year. I was posting about what I was preparing for the exams and short tutorials and all that stuff.

The Opportunity

The conversation

It was in the month of May when a major Ed-tech company in India approached me. I still remember a person from the company who had dropped a message on my Instagram account. The text read “We want to work with you as we have seen your talent for vlogging. Please provide us with your contacts so that we can have a chat about this”. The first thought that ran through my mind was ‘This is IRREVOCABLY a scam text”, but somewhere at the back of my mind, I was probably searching for an opportunity like this.

So, I searched through LinkedIn, found the guy, thought it was legit, took the bait and entered my phone number and email and hit send. The next day I got a call and the guy described the whole project. They wanted me to make one video per day for the next thirty days and for that I would be paid 40K. Now, I hadn’t received more than 1000 bucks altogether ever in my life before that event and since we were going back and forth on the phone, I heard the 40K to be 14K.

Off the top, I was cool with the pay because that was even 14 times more than what I used to get by tutoring high-schoolers. It was the next day I received a document from them in my mail stating the agreement and the payment that I am supposed to receive. I ran to my elder cousin-sister and showed her the mail. When she confirmed it was 40K, I was like, ‘Are you sure that they are going to pay me such an amount just for making videos!’. She affirmed the situation and my excitement was touching the sky. My novice conscience went ‘Holy mother God, I’m gonna be rich!’

The cloud nine moment

After some legal documentation, I started making the videos. It was a month full of excitement and grinding. I ticked off producing one video every single day for 30 days with top-notch quality on my bucket list. And after all the work when they made the full payment, the feeling was surreal. I had made some bucks with my own self-learned skills and hard work. I patted myself on the back saying ‘Well done, boy!’

Take away

So, in conclusion, passive income can be in any form and standing in the digital era, skills like graphic and web designing are worth adding to your arsenal of strength. Most importantly, you get everything with a click of a button in today’s world. How you use it, it’s up to you.

Recommended reading

  1. How do you use Anki – a beginner’s guide to digital flashcards
  2. Book summary – Deep Work (by Cal Newport)
  3. Book summary – Steal Like an Artist (by Austin Kleon)

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