The story dates back to February this year. A HSC candidate was going through a rough patch, not because of academic pressure (that was the one thing he would surely not miss) but because he got left out from a month-long collaboration project.
At such a difficult time, he found his father's hand on his shoulder. And within a couple of months, he became a new YouTube sensation who astonished the whole country with viral videos like 'Urban X Dhaka' and the 'Taste of Dhaka'.
You must have guessed by now whom we are talking about. But you will be amazed to know that this video artist who even caught Amitabh Reza Chowdhury's eyes is only 18 years old.
In an exclusive interview with The Business Standard, Ferdaus Hasan Prince explored his memory lanes and shared his experiences from starting as a confused video maker to turning into a trending content creator.
Prince has always been prone to using video gadgets. His passion led him to create videos at an early age.
"In class 9, I have started making videos with some friends. At that time, I had very little idea about the technical aspects of videography. We used to make fun videos and pranks," Prince said.
But his passion for filmmaking was more than just shooting funny videos. During a family tour to Cox's Bazar last year, he experienced the innate beauty of the ocean and nature. Immediately, he became fascinated with capturing nature in his camera.
He said while laughing, "Perhaps, I had kept my best for cinematography and editing".
Returning home, he began learning how to edit and focusing on making cinematic videos. His earlier two videos filmed last year featured the enchanting surroundings and livelihoods of Cox's Bazar and the Sajek Valley.
Earlier this year, Prince pondered about showcasing life in Dhaka through his digital lenses.
'Urban X Dhaka' portrayed the coexistence of urbanisation and culture in a montage of the metropolitan city which proved to be both a cinematographic and editing masterpiece.
But his best was yet to be seen. His new video the 'Taste of Dhaka' that has crossed ten thousand views in less than a week has made him a talk of the town.
"To capture Dhaka's cultural diversity, I had to arrive at Puran Dhaka at 5 AM from Tongi. I had listed around ten places I would highlight in my video. But sadly, on the first day, we could not enter Ahsan Manjil, and most of the biryani stores in the Nazira Bazar area were closed", he recalled.
"We explored the city for four days, from the morning till the last light of the sun. It was a huge experience for me. It is not always easy to take shots here in Dhaka amid such a huge crowd and traffic. We had both good and some unfortunate experiences. Like in Lalbagh Kella, they would not allow us to use a camera stand even though it was impossible to capture a large scale video without it. In other places, we had to convince people to let us shoot. It has truly been a major learning experience for me."
Right now, Prince is preparing for the HSC examination while studying at Tongi Government College. After a tight day-long schedule, he usually sits before his computer at night for two hours. He said, "I always prefer quality over quantity. I get very little time to edit my videos due to my exams. But whenever I sit for editing, I ensure I am doing it with dedication."
The editing of 'Taste of Dhaka' took almost half and a month to finish. With a camera, a 13mm lens, and a drone that he bought a day before the shoot, the creator tried to capture the essence of all the hustle and bustle of this city in a two and a half minute video. The speedy transition from scene to scene mirrors how the city is always on the move and the fast-paced Dhakaite life
At a very young age, Prince has already adapted VFX effects and created 4K quality videos. Moreover, his dreams are as big as the resolution quality of his videos.
For him, this is just the beginning. Prodigies have always remarked on their reception in such a way. From now on, his viewers will look forward to a 'taste' of his creativity.
The author is a student of International Relations at the University of Dhaka. He can be reached at [email protected]