Film Like Potato Jet – Make Epic Online Videos

After bingeing Potato Jet, or Gene Nagata’s, YouTube channel and two courses, I have compiled the main ingredients to film like him. Here they are.

Potato Jet seemed to come out of nowhere. I remember watching him when he had just a (healthy) handful of subscribers and now he is closing in on the 1 million mark. I’ve even seen Parker Walbeck reference Potato Jet as one of his favorite YouTubers in the Full Time Filmmaker community.

Honestly, it comes as no surprise to me. He’s one of the guys you watch a video of and think, “Wow, he’s going to be successful.” But, what exactly about what Potato Jet does makes me feel that way?

In this article, I want to peel back the secret ingredients behind making a Potato Jet video. If you want to learn how to make a Potato Jet video from the master himself, you can click below.

Oh, and if you haven’t seen the intro to Potato Jet’s online course, you have to check it out. It’s hilarious. I mean, seriously – he pulls out a samurai sword.

Hang Out with a Potato

In a world where many have switched their online names to their actual real-life names, Gene has decided to keep things casual with a name like Potato Jet. It may be intentional, or it may just be a coincidence, but I think the name reflects well the vibe of his channel – it’s laid back and is something he tries to have fun with.

Instead of trying to act extremely professional (as he jokingly does in the intro to his online course I linked above), he literally tears through the professional barrier (with a samurai sword, mind you) and joins us, the regular people, in wanting to make epic videos for the internet.

I may be reading into that a little too much, but I do think there may be a lot of truth to this idea that many YouTubers, especially those that do video as their full time, turn to YouTube to bring the magic back to their videomaking. They want to have fun, hang out with other people that enjoy making films, and not have to worry about suit and tie professionalism.

Potato Jet Takeaway #1

Have fun with the videos you make. This is so simple but yet so powerful. I mean, how hilarious is it that he sliced the background with a samurai sword? I know I keep bringing that up, but the magic behind him actually doing it is super meaningful to me. I think he’s having fun making videos and I think that trickles down to the audience having fun watching the video.

Let Your Goofy Side Show

If you have ever seen a Potato Jet video, you know that Gene can be a bit of a squirrel. He will be talking about one thing and then… BOOM! He’s cleaning his lens that has a surprise smudge on it. And then… BOOM! He’s back in action talking about the thing he was talking about. And then… Whoops! He made a mistake on a line, laughs it off, and continues to re-read the line.

Gene isn’t afraid to show his humorous side and leaves segments into edits that others may erase. He has the choice in the editing room to take out his mistakes when speaking but decides to keep them in. And I think that rocks. Everyone makes mistakes. Everyone can be a squirrel and get distracted. And I think it is because he leans into these moments and shows that he’s a regular guy that makes him so well liked and so entertaining to watch. Though, it certainly does help that he is an incredibly talented filmmaker and is extremely knowledgeable.

Potato Jet Takeaway #2

Keeping in shots that could be bloopers or outtakes can be an effective way to build stronger relationships with your viewers. In Gene’s pursuit of making epic online videos, he’s not afraid to have fun and make some mistakes along the way – he’s human, after all. And, it makes it that much more fun for the viewer, who can better connect with him.

Show Your Audience Some Love

Gene did something that I thought was very cool as he was climbing on YouTube. At the end of his videos, he would pull out comments from his previous video, read them, and comment on them. This was a fairly short segment but something that I felt like was very cool and something I think more creators can do, especially as they are growing their channels.

This further dives into the mantra I believe Gene has of “making epic videos for the internet”. I mean, he’s making it for us, you know, the internet people. So, it only makes since that the wants to involve us and have YouTube be more of a conversation rather than just a one-way street.

Potato Jet Takeaway #3

Find ways to involve your audience, no matter the size of your channel. How can you involve the audience and make them feel part of your story?

Final Thoughts on Filming Like Potato Jet

Potato Jet (Gene) is one of my favorite YouTubers because of how fun he is to watch. He’s a wildly talented, entertaining, and quirky filmmaker on a journey to make epic videos for the internet and I’m definitely a big fan along for the journey.

I enjoyed his videos so much that I even enrolled in his Udemy course on how to Make Epic Videos for the Internet. It’s a very insightful course, especially for those that want to create online content that grabs and keeps attention, and comes highly recommended by me.

If you want to check out his Udemy course, you can click below. He actually has two courses and, if you like Potato Jet and want to learn filmmaking from the spud himself, there isn’t a better option.

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