A Tribute To Casey Neistat
A Living Tribute from George Okello
Hello all. My name is George Okello and I love (most times) to vlog. I’m pretty sure were all familiar with the phenomenon that is YouTube, and I’m pretty sure that we’d all agree that Casey Neistat (if otherwise let me know!) is the best vlogger. Ever. Period. For those who don’t know, unfortunately the old man has hung up his boots (quit daily vlogging — for now!) and I’d like to take the opportunity to publicly thank him for inspiring me to start my own YouTube channel.
Other than Casey Neistat, the people who mainly influenced me to start vlogging was my close friend Andre Gordon and my girlfriend Marsha N. Being raised without the Internet (yes poverty still exists in 2017), I grew up largely oblivious to this insurgency that was consuming us all. Being a doting boyfriend however, I quickly became familiar with the likes of Patricia Bright, Samantha Maria, Dina & Sid, Damon & Jo, The Michalaks, Annie Drea, Copa90, Fun for Louis — and all that jazz — when Marsha would unfailingly catch up with her YouTube subscriptions whilst chilling in bed.
Admittedly, some of the videos were not at all that bad. Yes, I’ve been forced to edit this list, but one thing that quickly became apparent is that I couldn’t seem to find anyone who was like myself — a very ordinary Black British man. Beyond technology, cars and gaming there had to be a greater appeal to the male youtubing audience (I don’t really like any of the aforementioned). Then came along Casey.
One day my other good friend Sam (ahem take a bow this is your publication!) introduced me to Casey Neistat, a filmmaker living in NY who was making daily videos about his life. Usually when I heard the term ‘vlogging’, I’d think back to the numerous poorly constructed, never ending, glorified Snapchat-influenced selfies that would pop up here and there, with thoughtless backing music to complement the whole ordeal.
But Casey! With his immaculate ability to transform the mundane and boring into the spectacularly addictive, his inspiring work ethic, his don’t-give-two-sh*ts-if–anyone-is-looking-at-me style of filmmaking and his questionable haircuts, Casey single handedly redifined what it meant to be a youtuber. His whole swagger appealed greatly to my vision as a photographer and convinced me that there was a place for creatives on YouTube beyond the get-ready-with-me’s, gaming reviews and cats (can’t forget the cats).
So for you, Casey Neistat I raise a toast — thank you so much for the hard work you’ve poured into every video and raising the vlogging game to a whole other level. Thanks for inspiring others to daily vlog, and to largely copy the corny music style that only you could get away with. But most of all thank you for inspiring us to become more artistic, and encouraging those who would never film to think otherwise. I wish you every success on your adventures off the screen, and I wish everybody a happy new year! Now, to return to this broken hard drive that has prevented me from vlogging in 2017 thus far…