You have a mini studio in your pocket. I want to help you learn how to use it.

whether we like to admit it or not, most of us need to create content…

My name is Farouk, but most of my friends call me ‘rouk for short (rhymes with Luke).

Among the other things that I enjoy filling my time with, I teach people how to shoot quality videos using just their smartphone.

Being able to capture and share video content is an important skill in 2018 because they can get a large message across quickly and people love videos. For most of us, it is our preferred way to receive information. Any quick Google search around video popularity would make that clear.

Whether we need to shoot videos for our brands, our businesses, or to perfectly capture our personal memories, we are content creators who could use video in multiple ways.

I hope to use this website and my Instagram channel to highlight the many people who are using their smartphone to capture great video content. I’ll also teach people how to use their smartphone to capture great content.

But of course, that’s not all you’re here to find out…

You might be wondering how i got here or why I do this

or maybe you’re just reading in general? If so, that’s cool as fuck.

My road here was anything but straightforward.

Before SWYS (Shoot With Your Smartphone), I shot and edited multiple videos for my blog and video production service, Beyond The Eats.

It started as a way for me to interview restaurants & chefs because their stories are almost always captivating. This was the main reason I bought a DSLR camera back in 2015, to capture these stories.

I still use Beyond The Eats as a platform that specializes in providing restaurant marketing tips for the hospitality industry. I also use it to promote my video service because I specialize in shooting restaurants, chefs & hospitality businesses.

These experiences with Beyond The Eats led me to ask myself, “how far can I really push my shooting? What can I accomplish with the tools available to me?”

I was dedicated to making my videos better, so I eventually started to find tons of great ways people were using just their smartphone to shoot good videos.

I was amazed by what people were able to get using just their phone and was intrigued immediately, even though I was extremely skeptical for obvious reasons.

If this was true, and people were actually getting footage from their phone that did not look like shit, I knew it would be a large part of the future.

This is where my fascination with what I could do with just my smartphone began…

Have you ever gotten (slightly) obsessive over a new thing you love? If so, you’ll get exactly what I mean.

if you haven’t I’m probably slightly weird to you now, oops.

This new fascination with smartphone shooting became more serious after I read a couple of articles about the rising popularity of square videos.

I love square videos.

In my opinion (duh), they have much more of an impact than the landscape style videos that we are used to seeing (landscape = wider instead of higher), Especially if you’re watching on a mobile phone.

Of course, resizing video is always an option, but to me, it just never has the same impact of something that was shot and intended to be square from square one (pun fully intended).

Although shooting in a square (aka a 1:1 aspect ratio) is a function on a few newer DSLR cameras, cameras that are a couple of years older (like my camera) do not have this feature. Besides, not everyone can afford a brand new DSLR camera.

I didn’t know how to shoot square videos just yet, but I was determined to figure it out somehow.

My mom always encouraged me to do things differently whenever I can to stand out, and this was the perfect chance to do exactly that.

Even I couldn’t have imagined what would happen next though…

Oh shit, this is actually working!

I’ll make a long story as short as possible.

After a ton of trial and error, wasted money on shitty apps, and footage that will never see the light of day, I figured out how to shoot video in high-quality using just my phone and I could barely believe it.

(Full disclosure, I edited it using Final Cut because I had not found editing apps just yet.)

Here’s the first one I ever did, what do you think?

The reaction was unlike anything I have received from my videos before.

“how did you do that?!”

“I love this video! Make more like this!”

“This video made me want that grilled cheese sooo bad”

There were also way more people than I was used to sharing the post!

It felt great to see people resonate with this type of square video the way I always do. It felt risky putting this video out because I had no idea what the reception would be.

As I kept making these videos, people would see me out shooting with just my phone and would ask SO MANY of the same questions…

I knew I was on to something

I thought to myself “if so many people are asking me, there must be TONS of other people who are curious too”

and with that Shoot With Your Smartphone was born.

But you know what they say, nothing in life is free. Read on for “the catch”

Sooo, what’s the catch?

Skepticism, is that you?!

When I first started telling some of my friends about the idea for this website, they found very nice and subtle ways to say that it is a waste of my time and talents, which I agreed with until I realized 3 things.

There are actually three big things in it for me, personally, as well.

  1. This website helps to raise awareness around my services as a video producer/videographer who specializes in shooting for restaurants, chefs, & entrepreneurs
  2. I love to inspire creativity in others and see what they do with it, it inspires my own work when I see fresh and new ways that other people are using the tools that are available to them.
  3. I am (selfishly?)driven by the fact that I might be able to help people who can’t afford expensive equipment to tell their story. I HATE the barrier there is between people and telling stories through video.

Interests

Is it weird that this is my favorite part of “about me” pages?

I spend a lot of time creating content for SWYS and Beyond The Eats, but in my free moments, you might catch me doing some of this stuff…

  • Reading marketing news: I’m a digital marketer first, so I love to read what is changing in marketing so I don’t fall behind. The challenge that marketing creates by being forever-changing truly excites me. I never take that feeling of excitement for granted.
  • Drinking Cocktails: Enjoying a great cocktail (or 3 or 4, who’s counting?). I love bourbon, but I’m switching to gin while it’s warm out in NYC.
  • Running/Exercising: I run about 10 miles per week to keep weight off and my mind sharp. I also do strength training. I’m pretty into health & wellness overall.
  • Watching YouTube: I watch a lot of basketball talk like Undisputed (shoutout to Shannon Sharpe), Bball Breakdown and of course I watch Final Cut Pro tutorials.