Aaliya Ilyaslay - One Thing That Has Helped Me Overcome Creative Blocks Is Never Restricting Myself to a Single Genre of Content (Make up Artist & Musician)

Aaliya Ilyaslay

Knowing who you are creating content for, and keeping their likes and dislikes in mind. Being honest with them and engaging with them, while never losing your individuality. Always remembering that people are here to watch you in your element, you may not be able to please everyone and so growing an audience might take longer, but when you do, you will build a family instead, of people with integrity, and those that respect you, and you, them. 


1. Tell us about your background and journey.

Born and raised in Delhi, I have been a singer for as long as I can remember. I think it all goes back to when my father would make me listen to classics by Sir Elton John, George Michael, and Celine Dion, and ask me to ‘copy’ them. He meant for me to learn those songs and try to sing them exactly like the singer. He would then make me sing in front of the family, friends, and any gathering actually. 

I feel that was when the musician in me started enjoying all of it. However, I wasn’t very active in school, add 100 kgs of weight with a lot of under confidence and you’ll have me. I felt like being overweight was why I wasn’t popular and didn’t get many opportunities to perform in school. I had a drop year right after school, that year I learnt makeup as art from the gurus on YouTube. I started posting makeup looks on Facebook and Instagram but had no audience. 

Later in College, I came to terms with the fact that I was the only one holding myself back. I was afraid people didn’t like me but the truth was I didn’t like myself. College was what really set me free, It was just.. different. I had no care in the world what people thought of me, I realised it was a clean slate and went for every opportunity I found. Be it the University's Foundation Day, Competitions, or the Department's Alumni Meet, I performed everywhere. 

2. What led you to start your blog and what is it about?

Initially, like mentioned above, my Instagram page was all things makeup and art. I didn’t have any audience but that never demotivated me to not post. I would post nail art, makeup looks, etc. My first ever singing video was posted in 2016, of me singing to Ustad Ghulam Ali Khan Saheb. 

He is a close friend of the family and I was practically shivering while singing to him! He appreciated me and that is another thing that motivated me to continue pursuing music, even if it was just to post for the 300 people who followed me. Later in college, I started posting videos of my college performances and gained a larger audience. 

I would post covers on Instagram but would black out the screen. As time progressed, so did I and I finally started appearing in the cover videos with myself in them. I became a more confident performer live as well as on the internet. 

3. Is it financially sustainable to be a digital creator these days?

Honestly, it depends. I have never been paid to post a video where I'm singing but it did lead to a bunch of opportunities. Summer of 2020, a live streaming platform reached out to me to perform for their audience. The platform paid its artists and they found me through my cover of the song 'Who' by Lauv and BTS on YouTube. Since then I've earned through my live streams but as I mentioned, never through Instagram or Youtube. 

I also did makeup and skincare videos and would occasionally get a brand to do a barter collaboration with me but nothing significant to classify as an 'income'. The thing about music is that it can involve a lot of copyright issues, especially the kind of songs I do, I'm mostly covering or remixing the work of other artists. In that case, YouTube either denies you monetization or asks you to share the revenue with the original artist, but it's mostly the former. 

However, I do believe that even though I didn't get paid much for being an online cover artist, it opened many doors for me. And every genre of content is different - beauty bloggers, gamers, tech reviewers have a different set of advantages and disadvantages when it comes to earning through their work. I believe, especially during the pandemic, that being a digital content creator is one of the most redeeming professions, it may not be conventional but it can be stable, after all, it is the age of the internet.

4. How can someone become a successful content creator?

Consistency and Individuality. My only two takeaways of years of experience in creating content. The former helps the algorithm identify you and reward you and the latter is what makes you unique, something that is different for different people. Last but not the least, knowing your audience. 

Knowing who you are creating content for, and keeping their likes and dislikes in mind. Being honest with them and engaging with them, while never losing your individuality. Always remembering that people are here to watch you in your element, you may not be able to please everyone and so growing an audience might take longer, but when you do, you will build a family instead, of people with integrity, and those that respect you, and you, them. 

5. How and where do you find inspiration to churn out content?

I like to think of myself as a very creative person. I have always been artistic and something or the other is always on my mind. One thing that has helped me overcome creative blocks is never restricting myself to a single genre of content. I call myself an artist and art is what I do, either in the form of music or makeup. I do keep the trends in mind while deciding what to post but I don't let them be the sole motivation to create my content. 

I also engage with my audience a lot, I ask them what they'd like to see, what songs they want me to cover. I reply to as many comments and messages as I can and let people know I'm grateful for them and their appreciation. Oddly, hate comments also challenge me to produce better content. I don't let them affect me a lot, but when they do I make a sarcastic video about them.

6. Who is your favourite creator and why?

Kaushal on YouTube and Instagram is one of my most favourite creators, she is a beauty blogger and I've been following her for the longest time. She is based in the UK and has managed to build a family of subscribers and followers that respect her and support her a lot! It's inspiring to see that she chose to pursue her passion as a full-time job and taking that risk paid off for her. She also posts about positivity and has been consistent with her content for almost 7 years now.

7. Do you think overnight success is a thing, do you believe in it after your singing to a stranger video got so viral on Instagram or you think that there is a lot of hard work behind that overnight success.

I don't think there is any such thing as 'Overnight Success', even if there is I don't think it's there to last. My video titled 'Singing Bollywood Songs to Randoms Foreigners on Omegle' became viral for a bunch of reasons. I don't think it was luck, I know it was hard work. Firstly, I think that the concept was new and interesting for people. 

Omegle is known for video chats with strangers but rarely would you find someone singing on there, and that too in Hindi! Secondly, I think the song selection was a popular choice that people enjoyed, but most importantly it got viral because I had been posting covers before that video, and continued doing the same after it. 

I think the algorithm rewarded me for being a consistent creator. Making my video viral and leading people to my profile is the platform's job, but making those people stay on my profile and end up following me, is mine! I'm sure those who decided to stay saw that I had a lot of similar content to offer that they may enjoy. So I guess even if this was my first video on Instagram and it did decide to blow up, I would get a spike in my numbers but if I didn't follow up with the content, that spike would be short-lived!

Aaliya Ilyaslay

Aaliya Ilyaslay

Aaliya Ilyaslay - Make Up Artist & Musician

Interviewed By: Rudraksh Sharma

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3 Comments

  1. Its easy to become a content creator if you have a creating mind hand have a good writing skills that can shape your ideas you can try here for guest post writing Lawyers Write For Us

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