Hello friends of Simple-Earth
It’s been a while since the last post, or at least for you guys on the public-side of the web. I thought it well to give some information about that in this post. Let’s get into it with a sort of FAQ’like format, because it feels good for the mood today. Simple-Earth’s Mode of Operation can easily be explained like this.
What is Simple-Earth again?
Simple-Earth.org is the name I use for my thinking, philosophies, projects and goals. It is a name and brand, so to speak, where I make available the knowledge I gather during my quest for self-sufficiency. Simple-Earth is about being where we want to be, doing what we want to do while uplifting our communities and own lives, being healthier and feeling satisfied with less. It is not about living without technology, but it could be. It is not about minimalism, but why not? I am happiest when I do my work while living closer to nature. I want to share that through Simple-Earth.org, as video episodes, articles and images – whether good or bad, successes or failures.
What is Self-Sufficiency?
This term is thrown around a lot lately, and I don’t want to pollute the meaning of words. I just don’t know of any better word for what we as humans are supposed to do, to live. To me, self-sufficiency means to rely on oneself, at the highest level possible, to your circumstances, surroundings and abilities. It’s something that anyone with any ability (or lack thereof) can achieve, because being 100% self-sufficient isn’t the point and it never was. Humans never were 100% self-sufficient, and we have always relied on communities to share and delegate roles between members. People did, however, rely a lot on themselves for production of food and resource gathering (water, medicinal, etc). Self-sufficiency can start at 1% and go as high as you might handle. People with day-jobs can practise it, or it can be your day job (as it is now for me).
I am but a few percent self-sufficient on this quest here in the arid Karoo, and I rely a lot on my local community. I do not own tractors (my neighbour does) and manual labour takes a long time. With the help of my wife and father, we are slowly getting there. If you can grow a handful of your own food, or catch a few litres of rain, your path to self-sufficiency has started.
In self-sufficiency, we learn (for real!) about plants, animals, weather, fixing & building things and dealing with extreme trials.
Who is the content for, and what can I get out of it?
If you’re planning to live like we do, or have some personal specific goals to get away from the crazy world and live your life the way you think it should be, then Simple-Earth’s content is ideal for you. If you’re a friend of the outdoors and nature, then you’re in the right place. I want this to be inspiring, motivating, entertaining and educational to anyone who feels they want to become self-sufficient at any level, from balcony gardener to farming or smallholding. If I can do this, then so can you.
Why is there a Patreon funding campaign?
There is a multi-faceted answer to this, so give me a shot at wording it. The life of living day by day for the weekend is over for me. It ejected me, but I am happy about that. I didn’t like myself when I lived that way, because I knew what I wanted more than a decade ago already.
There’s, however, no level of self-sufficiency that can exist without at least a tiny need for fiat currency. I calculated my income needs, and there’ are a few things that need some real world paper money. To pay for those things, I engage in ad hoc projects (pertaining to my old career), helping people, random online things and a bit of trading with the money I have left. Then there is also Simple-Earth, my passionate baby project to share my quests and knowledge gained with you through videos and written pieces.
Recording video while I work on projects is difficult. It makes projects run slower; it needs camera work and director work I do myself. I plan and script videos, and they require editing, which I only get to at night after I worked on the farm all day. I do this because I absolutely love it. I think it is fair to ask for voluntary memberships in my Patreon campaign for those of you who feel that it is worth a few bucks.
Lastly, I make up for that funding by producing better and more content as time goes on. Funding motivates me, it gives me incentive to produce and share more and makes it possible to (eventually!) afford things like better gear and tools which will benefit the YouTube channel further. Check out the Patreon page here.
When and How are the videos produced?
To shoot videos, I carry my camera and a spare battery everywhere I go. It gives me the ability to record anything, anytime. When I am engaged in construction projects, for instance, it means I have to stop work often to change camera angles, considering sound and detail. There’s video being recorded every day, and notes for articles being made almost as much.
At night, after feeding the dogs and making dinner, Alexia and I try to relax a bit. During this time, I will download my content and sort it. A lot gets discarded if it’s obscure or unusable, and I store the rest for the next editing run.
My aim is to produce a video every week (to about 10 days) but this varies based on work-load and priorities on the farm. Some videos will be available to Patreon friends only, but I upload most to YouTube, publically. I make all videos available to my Patreon members first, though, as early access is one of their benefits. Once a certain time has passed, depending on content, I will make the video public or keep it at an exclusive level for the members. Whatever you see on the Simple-Earth Org channel is public and you are welcome to enjoy it. Thank you to those who are already subscribed, by the way. I truly appreciated it.
A last note here is, if I get enough Patreon pledges, I will not have to monetise the YouTube channel. This will cause no (or fewer?) adverts and just be best. I also do not want any sponsors or funding that will alter, change, or drive the channel commercially.
Do I have to be a Patreon member to see videos?
I would love for your support, if you feel the videos are great. I work very hard on them, and I have a lot to share and show on the future. You do not have to be a member, though. All videos that go public will be free on YouTube, and you can watch them, like them and subscribe any time you like 🙂
Patreon members will have benefits though, as described on the Patreon page. Two of these benefits will be early access to ALL the videos I release, as well as access to exclusive member-only videos.
How can I support Simple-Earth if I cannot afford a Patreon membership?
I appreciate all support. Visiting this website and reading this is already a good start. Other ways you can support, includes:
- Making a one time contribution via PayPal
- Buy us a tractor (j/k, but seriously…)
- Subscribing to the channel
- Liking and commenting
- Sharing the channel and videos with friends and family (views really help in the YouTube world)
- Shouting out, or sharing a link on your blog, tweets or Instagram posts 🙂
- Just watching and enjoying the videos
How much will Patreon memberships set me back?
Please see the tiers available. I try to make various Tiers available so that you have the option. Some of them provide more or fewer benefits. I am working on a strategy for more tiers, so keep watching that page.
Is this one of those “off grid” fake things or real?
I have heard about, and seen, the amount of content that people have cautioned against. While most of us in the off-grid/self-reliance side of life is trying to do honest things, there are actors out there. There’s a lot of rich folks as well, that are not self-sufficient, but claim to be. To each their own, and fortunately, we all have free will on what we like to watch and enjoy.
Simple-Earth is, however, just me and my actual events. My major income is a small amount of currency generated through Patreon and the projects I do for others. I choose to live this way and want to make it work so that I can empower myself and my family for the future of self-sufficiency to the highest level possible. I cannot cheat my way out of this, or it will backfire on me when I can least afford it.
At this stage, I produce less content (time and income limited) than I would like to, so there’s more coming up in the future. What you see is what I do, however. While there’s another income in our household, I do not thrive/live off that, and it’s used to pay back costs that went into purchasing our land and getting out of debt. Those funds are not mine, and I committed to getting along and building a life that does not require them. The future is uncertain in this weird world, so I need to build my (our) self-sufficiency up to my planned level.
The episodes and articles I produce have, and always will document my quest for that life, and will hopefully provide entertainment, knowledge and motivation to you all.
You have my word.