Frequently Asked Questions
I often get asked the same questions, so decided to create this FAQ page.
1. What microphone setup are you using?
This is my most frequently asked question. I usually use a generic (no brand name) “ear hook” microphone. You can find them cheaply on places like eBay. It is plugged into a digital recorder - in my case a Zoom H1, and I record my audio independently of the camera, then match the audio and video up in editing.
2. When are you going to make more Astro / LARP / how-to / camping/ other type-video’s?
The videos come along when they do. Rickvanman is a variety channel. I make all of my videos for fun, only when I’m in the mood to make them. I dip in and out of subjects all the time, loosing interest in them for a while then usually re-gaining it again some time later. Feeling pressure to make specific video’s on specific subjects because people demand them, for me, would be a fast-track to quitting YouTube, so I just go with the flow, and kindly ask you do the same. The videos come along when they do :-)
3. What Telescope equipment should I buy?
Buying a telescope is a very individual and personal thing. There is not really a one-size-fits-all solution. I am still very much a beginner in astronomy and astrophotography. With the state of the UK weather, it's also very rare to get a good clear night without cloud cover, so my actual experience is very limited at the moment. I do not feel I am qualified enough to offer advice on equipment.
The best option I would recommend would be to have a conversation by phone or in person with a specialist shop or group/club. Also spend some time reading and interacting on the various astronomy web forums out there. If at all possible, I would also highly recommend going along to some type of astronomy club meeting, or try to get some actual hands-on experience before taking the plunge and purchasing your own equipment. This is an expensive hobby, it's much better to get clued-up first, than taking the plunge and regretting it later. Rushing in to buying the wrong equipment and finding out later it won't do the things you were hoping it would do, can be a fast-track to putting you off the hobby forever, so it's essential to do some homework first.
This is the equipment I am using - It is NOT, in any way, a suggestion of what equipment you should consider getting.
4. What editing software do you use?
I generally use the most recent version of Adobe Premiere Elements. Currently the 2018 Version.
5. Can I ask you questions about the apothecary / herbalism?
No longer. I enjoyed engaging in and making videos on herbalism back in 2010 - 2011. It was highly education to me, but ultimately ended up as a short-lived hobby, mainly because I was producing loads of medicines and remedies that I never actually had a use for.
I haven't returned to the hobby since 2011 and am now out of practice.
If you are looking for specific information on how to make a product, I recommend obtaining a book on the subject, as this is where all of my own knowledge came from. I made a video that gives an overview of all the herbalism books I used here.
Perhaps when I’m old, decrepit and in need of such medicines, I’ll take it up again :-)
6. Do you still have your royalty free music website?
No, I closed it a number of years ago. Much of the music I created at the time contained non-exclusive stock loops. Many music creators who used the same stock loops to create their own music, unscrupulously, or unknowingly, registered their music to the content ID fingerprinting systems across YouTube and other platforms, (stock loops are not permitted, but they register them anyway).
This ultimately made all of my music unusable because it would get flagged with 3rd-party content claims whenever anyone used it. Dealing with this became a full-time job and made the free music unusable.
8. Can you promote or mention my channel/cause/charity/sister/husband/wife etc?
I'm afraid I have to make a point of saying ‘sorry-but-no'. It's simply because whenever I’ve done it in the past, it sets a precedent, and I then get bombarded with requests for me to promote or mention all manor of causes, people, channels etc. People then get upset if I do it for someone, but not for them.
9. Can you promote my products for money or freebies?
Plugging or promoting products for money generally goes against my channel ethos. Pushing products is not what Rickvanman is about. I may however consider doing honest reviews of products I receive, depending on the nature of the product and whether or not I feel my audience may benefit from it.
10. Can I talk to you in person or meet you?
It always surprises me how often I get asked this question. On the one hand it’s lovely to be asked, but as an introvert and someone who’s usually quite socially reclusive, I tend not to follow up on such offers.
Also as a rule, I generally don’t communicate face to face with folks I don’t know, who are anonymous or have no genuine social media presence.
11. Do you have a Facebook page
12. Can you produce royalty free music to order?
In short - no, sorry. I only create music spontaneously and when I am in the mood to do it, which isn't that often these days :(
13. What’s the name of your big metal tripod?
Its a generic brand known as a HQ100. Google “ HQ 100 tripod ” and you’ll find it.
14. Do You Still Have Your Hydroponics Setup?
No. I built it purely for experimenting for a year or two. It took up space, was high-maintainence and the results were interesting but bearing in mind the cost of building it and the consumables required to run it, it made lettuce very expensive! I eventually figured it was just as easy to put a few seeds in some dirt.
15. What royalty royalty free music do you use?
16. What Should I do if I can’t find an answer to my question?
Please contact me here.