When I first started fishing blogging, I quickly found the YouTube channel of AMFisH. I was immediately impressed by Billy G, the man behind AMFisH. This Ontario bass angler’s knowledge of fishing provides such a unique angle on fishing techniques. His vlogs are professionally done and very engaging. So, I was quite happy when he was willing to discuss fishing vlogging 101.
So, I was very excited when Billy G agreed to do an interview on vlogging. I have met a lot of young fishing vloggers and know they can benefit from Billy.
Well, the interview didn’t disappoint. Billy openly shares his knowledge about vlogging and fishing for all of us to learn from. Enjoy the interview.
You have been making fishing vlogs for several years. What got you started making videos?
I was trying to find a way to live my passion for fishing. After having read an inspirational book about chasing what you love to do, through the use of social media the AMFisH fishing vlog was born! AMFisH was something I had come up with in my late teens. It was dedicated to amateur fishing people looking to increase their fishing knowledge. I spent several months working on a very detailed business plan. I wanted one day to grow AMFisH into some sort of fishing brand/business that was also involved in charity events.
How much time does it take to produce a vlog?
Producing the vlog in general does take quite a bit of time, between charging batteries for my video equipment, to hitting the lake as often as you can, to not fishing when you want to fish because you are shooting several videos that day on the water, to reviewing the footage when you get home to make sure it turned out fine and can be published, then loading the videos, slightly editing the videos on your YouTube channel with subscribe buttons and better quality video cover images, it sure does take up a lot of time. It’s hard to say how much time it takes all in, but I would say at least a few hours a week, possibly 3 to 4 in total, which includes getting the gear ready, shooting the videos and loading them as the key parts of the process.
I believe it was Outdoor Life or maybe Field & Stream that used to have a tips and tricks section, often submitted by readers, in their magazine of cool ideas for fishing and hunting. I often think of that when watching your videos as you produce ideas that are kind of unique or a little different than you will get anywhere else. Where do you get your ideas for your vlog topics?
I am not the typical YouTube guy, as my videos are mainly ideas I come up with on a regular basis that are more about information someone may not find on YouTube about fishing. No one really focuses on putting out content that they personally struggled with. For example fishing in the wind has plagued me for years and I have found some unique ways to fish on very windy days. So passing information like that along seemed like the thing to focus on.
My vlogs are more about the struggles everyone goes through while learning to fish and wanting to get better at fishing, which is why I did stick with a lot of these outside of the box ideas for my vlog. I have over 26 years of fishing experience and have learned quite a bit in the space as I am a multispecies fisherman. I have lots of info to pass along to anyone who is looking for it. I also do receive video topic requests from subscribers/followers as well, which I shoot as quickly as possible so the user gets their information quickly.
What equipment do you use for making the vlogs?
I started out using a simple Canon camera that was able to shoot video, used that for a long while until some of the better equipment hit the market. Now I have upgraded to using two GoPro cameras which make things significantly easier. When it comes to fishing gear I am not stuck on the best gear available, many of my rods and reels are purchased on sale and I stay within a price range I can afford. Why? Because you don’t need a $650 rod and reel combo to catch that monster bass. I caught my monster on a $275 dollar combo!
What are the most challenging aspects of making videos?
By far the most challenging aspects of shooting my vlogs are doing it mainly all alone and battling the elements, as Mother Nature can change quite quickly. I have had tripods fall over in the middle of videos, wind noise being so bad the audio on the video was completely drowned out, cameras stopped while I was battling a good fish fight, storms roll in, batteries die too soon, 40 geese fly right over me while shooting, a train passing by and drowning my voice out on video. You name it…it has happened, and its all part of learning and understanding more about where you are shooting your videos.
What are the most rewarding aspects?
The most rewarding aspect is helping people through my vlogs. When I receive positive feedback, which is usually something like thank you your video helped me, I know I have done even just a little good through my vlog series. Secondly I am living what I love to do most, which is fishing. Hard to beat that!
There are so many young fishermen getting started in producing videos. What are three things you know now that you wish you knew when you first started?
Shooting a vlog series is not an easy thing to do, especially if you publish them quite regularly as you need to have a stash of videos that are ready to go at a moment’s notice. First thing would be to ALWAYS be yourself, as the market will either accept you or they will not, but be yourself. Secondly have the right equipment as it truly does make things a lot easier with less stress involved. Third don’t publish content you are not happy with, just for the sake of loading a video. ALWAYS strive to publish the best content you can.
Before I let you go, I have to ask a couple of questions about your fishing. If you were only allowed to fish 3 bodies of water for the rest of your life in Ontario, what would they be and why?
Not an easy question but I would have to say some of my smaller lakes. Moira Lake which I have fished on a few thousands times. Moira Lake is a multispecies lake, part of the Severn River which is an area very dear to me. I fished there when I was just starting out. Also, Bay of Quinte which is a larger body of water with spectacular sunsets and great fishing!
What personal fish record are you trying hard to achieve this fishing season?
I’ve never been a personal best fisherman as you never know when that BIG ONE will be on your line. I have always been driven to get better at fishing each time I go out. That constant learning is what I am always chasing. I do however want to catch my biggest musky ever. I have missed a few giants over the last two years. So catching my 4ft plus, 50 pound musky is definitely a fish record on my goals list!
What is the one thing you would pass along to anyone starting with video content and vlogs?
I will keep this answer short and sweet. No matter what you are shooting videos on NEVER and I mean “NEVER” let anything stand in your way. Always find solutions to any problems you encounter.