A plate of laughter
Article from the Sun daily by Leena Zuki (posted on 23 July 2020)
AZFAR HERI is a local content creator who exudes a friendly and humorous vibe. The 22-year-old enjoys talking and being in front of the camera, which made it possible for him to gain 213,000 subscribers on his YouTube channel within a span of just one year.
Aside from his career, Azfar is a full-time college student majoring in Interactive Multimedia Design. He started sharing cooking videos on his Instagram, which currently has 479,000 followers, before he ventured to YouTube, and gained attention from many.
How do you manage your time as a full-time college student and as a YouTuber?
“It is quite a struggle because I need to focus on both equally, because both are really important to me.
“However, during the movement control order (MCO) period, it became even more difficult to manage my time, because I had to attend online lectures, complete assignments, and edit videos for my YouTube channel.
“So for now, I attend lectures in the afternoon, record and edit videos in the evening, and complete my assignments at night.”
How did you stumble upon your YouTube career?
“I have always enjoyed cooking, and I would post my cooking videos on my Instastory.
“People responded positively, and requested more cooking videos from me. Then, I would save all these videos on my Instagram highlights, which eventually became too unorganised. Eventually, I resorted to posting these videos as Instagram posts, but they had a time limit of only one minute per video.
“People suggested that I should start posting my cooking videos on YouTube instead, since I had already established a good number of viewers.
Moreover, I could talk longer in my videos since there is no time limit, and get some income on the side too.
“Hence, my YouTube channel was created last July, which makes it almost a year now.”
What type of content do you post on your YouTube channel, and how is the response from viewers?
“I started with cooking videos, then went on to sharing ghost stories and occasional vlogs on my channel. Although people have always enjoyed my cooking videos, I am surprised that people are enjoying my ghost stories as well, because they do ask for more. I enjoy making vlogs because those are memories that I can look back on, and people have been very supportive of the content that I put out there.”
How did you learn to cook?
“I always help out in the kitchen whenever my grandmother or mother cooks, so that is how I mainly learned to cook. Moreover, I get recipes here and there, but I add my own twist to them, which I share with others through my cooking videos.”
How is life different now that you are in the public eye?
“As for online, I think getting hate comments is normal, and is something that most public figures have to deal with. I don’t really let that bother me as I choose to focus on what matters most to me.
“Why let a small group of people affect me, when I have such supportive followers and viewers who enjoy the content that I post?
“On the other hand, in public, there is a lack of privacy. People recognise me even when I put on a cap, sunglasses, and a face mask. They approached me and asked if I am Azfar, and they tell me that they could recognise me by my voice, which is amazing.
“Besides that, I do get secretly photographed by people once in a while, for instance, when I was on the LRT and I was not even prepared for a photo, which I find funny!”
Who makes up the support system in your life?
“Since day one, it has always been my mother. She has been very supportive of whatever I do. She is my number one fan. She turns on her notifications so whenever I post any content, she gets notified. What makes this funny is that we both live in the same house!
“Not to mention, my friends who first encouraged me to venture into becoming a YouTuber, and they have always suggested content ideas for me to record and create.”