Welcome to Streamers on the Rise, where we find streamers who are growing their channels, content, and audiences in extraordinary ways. Each week we’ll talk with a creator about what goes into livestreaming–both on and off camera.
When you think of the average Twitch viewer, you probably don’t picture someone in their 40s or 50s–let alone someone in their 60s or 70s.
But for Techniq, welcoming people in those age brackets to his chat is an everyday occurence.
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Techniq himself is 39, has been streaming on Twitch for almost a decade, and really does have viewers who are in their 70s. He’s got younger viewers, too, but in general, his viewership skews older, and that’s exactly how he likes it. The audience he’s built over the past few years (with significant growth since 2021, when Techniq quit his job and started streaming full-time) is noticeably “chill” and respectful, he says, and embraces his own everyone-come-hang-out attitude.
Techniq attributes a lot to his audience, and to Twitch as a whole. Back before he started streaming, he was an aspiring actor whose mom had talked him out of going to college for theater. He’d grown up an only child and a bit of a loner, and during high school, found his place with acting, he says. But his mom–probably like most moms–was wary of him getting a degree in a field where finding dependable income can be dicey. He gave in and double-majored in graphic design and Japanese, then went into marketing. He “hated it,” he says, and bounced around to a few other career paths, including working at a hospital, doing mobile platform engineering, and DJing.
His passion for performance surged back to the forefront when a friend introduced him to Twitch.
“There was a guy named Taliesin who had YouTube videos, and I saw him on Twitch, and I was like, ‘Whoa. I’ll just watch for a little bit,'” Techniq explains. “He was talking about people were giving him money, and I was like, ‘Wait, you can make money while playing video games?'”
He wanted in on that. So, not long after, he launched his Twitch channel.
A lot has happened between then and now. We’ll let Techniq tell you most of it, but what we will say is that building his platform on Twitch helped him break out of his shell and break into the voice acting industry.
Check out our chat with him below.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Tubefilter: I would love to hear a little bit about your background, where you’re from, and how you got started in streaming.
Techniq: Sure. I’m originally from Brooklyn, New York, and at a young age, we moved down to South Carolina, and I really didn’t fit in too well with any groups, because it was just so…You figure out where racism is when you run down to the South. I’m mixed, Black, Japanese, French, Native American. I was never fitting in any groups, so I had to only make my way myself. I took to drawing. I was always an artist, so I would draw and stuff and be into drama and theater and acting and modeling and stuff like that. Things I got into.
When I got into high school, or middle school–well, and high school–I did a lot of sports. My parents would keep me involved in activities to keep me out of trouble, I guess. I’m an only child, so I didn’t really have many friends. I don’t have any brothers or sisters. My dad always gave me video game systems. He kept me there, and I had chores, and I had sports. It was just the triangle, the trifecta. It kept me myself. Growing up, things got lonely. I had times were I didn’t like myself because I wasn’t accepted. I thought the problem was me.
It took a long time for me to break out of that shell. I was popular in high school because of sports and stuff, but it wasn’t for the reasons that I wanted. Growing up, getting into acting, was where I found my place. Getting into acting and theater and drama. I went to college to do it as well. I played football in college for a little bit, and I quit, because it wasn’t for me, it wasn’t fun anymore.
I stuck to acting, but then my mom was like, “You need to find something where money is going to be immediate just because you’re going to have to pay these bills and stuff when you get out of college. You don’t want to be on that path of failure.” I was like, “Well, Mom, I’m good at what I do.”
I kept acting on the side, and she wanted me to do advertising. I hated it. I went into graphic design, and that is where I got a degree in graphic design, and Japanese, and I speak Japanese fluently. I went to Japan, went to Osaka, and went to Kansai Daigaku, which is an exchange school up there. Came back to college, finished it, and then I didn’t know what to do at that point. I just got into little jobs here and there while still going to acting classes, and still doing that as well.
Did full-time DJing for a while before coming to Twitch. It was fun for a little bit, but then I was like, “Ah, this life’s not for me.” I don’t like traveling, all these parties and stuff. Waking up, going to bed super late, waking up super late, just didn’t feel good. I went into a career path as a mobile platform engineer. Did that for 10 years with eight of those years doing Twitch. I just quit in May of 2021. I quit my job because I was pretty stable doing this stuff. I’m still acting on a side, still doing commercials. COVID slowed that down so I started going into voice acting a good bit.
Here I am today. The partner path on Twitch. It took me five months to get a partner on Twitch. It was a lot harder back then because you had to have 500 viewers consistently. I love it. I love Twitch. It’s opened a lot of doors for me, and made me less stressful, and made me a little bit more confident in myself, still working on loving myself completely. I think that’s something that everyone goes through their life with.
Tubefilter: What year did you get on Twitch, and what was that catalyst in the middle of all these other pursuits and careers that you were balancing? What made you want to get on Twitch?
Techniq: I was a viewer first, so I came when it was Justin.tv. I think in 2011, or 2012, one of those two. I was like, “Oh, this site’s got ads all over the place. This is probably virus-filled.” So I was freaking out, and I left. I was on YouTube a good bit. I think back then, one of my friends wanted me to play World of Warcraft or something, and I was like, “Well, let me look it up and see.”
There was a guy named Taliesin who had YouTube videos, and I saw him on Twitch, and I was like, “Whoa. I’ll just watch for a little bit.” He was talking about people were giving him money, and I was like, “Wait, you can make money while playing video games?” That’s wild. I met CohhCarnage and Ducksauce, and I became friends with all of them. CohhCarnage was nowhere near the size he is now, so it was easier to talk to him.
I was like, “Wow, I don’t want to DJ anymore, so maybe I should try this streaming thing.” Everybody backed me up. My first stream, I had 40 viewers. It was really fun and I just kept going. I had a poopy setup. It was a laptop. It was a desk lamp with no shade on top of it. No lampshade. It was pretty bad. It was Dollar Store stuff. I made it happen, and I just kept going, and somehow, it worked out.
Tubefilter: You said you’re still doing acting, and you’re picking up voice acting on the side. Do you do Twitch full-time, or is that a balance?
Techniq: Yes, Twitch full-time now. When COVID came into play, acting was very limited, especially onscreen stuff, so I started getting into voice acting. I have a good bit of voice acting friends, and my acting coach is very well-known in both worlds of onscreen and voice acting. She was like, “Yes, you really got a talent for this voice acting stuff. You need to pursue that until auditions open up. You may find yourself wanting to do both.” I was like, “Yes, maybe.”
I started really going hard in Twitch and doing commercials and stuff as well with Twitch. It’s opened a lot of doors. I host a lot of stuff with Twitch. My hosting career on Twitch was what made me who I am today. I guess you could say when it comes to popularity. Right now, I’m doing Twitch full-time, but I am, since auditions are starting to open up, and writers are starting to write seasons and stuff like that and people are starting to make stuff in abundance, I’m going to start going for more auditions soon, but right now, it’s mainly just voice acting, hosting, and Twitch.
Tubefilter: I’d love to hear more about how you got into casting and hosting.
Techniq: Yes, the hosting thing was interesting. They really didn’t allow too many people just to come into the hosting realm on Twitch because Twitch was so new and they were still trying to discover where they were, and a lot of people didn’t know what Twitch was, right? You would see MANvsGAME, Ezekiel III, these really big streamers always hosting these events. There was one guy that looked like me named Okaydrian that was hosting once in a blue moon, I see him there. I’d be like, “Wait, how do you do that?”
With TwitchCon, I got partner right before TwitchCon. I think it was 2015, or maybe earlier, I don’t know. I saw DJ Wheat at the time, and Anna Prosser up on a stage at the end of TwitchCon. I used to have huge social anxiety, so being there with all those people was already overwhelming. Seeing them on stage at the end crying because they were so passionate, they were so happy that something finally started working, and they were able to get everyone together. It was a really good experience, and they were just super passionate, and they were hosting all this stuff. I was like, “I want to do that.” I remember sitting in the audience saying that.
When I got back, I would watch a couple of things that Twitch was doing. They would host every event, PAX, you name it. Twitch was there. I emailed Anna Prosser at the time, and I was like, “Anna, I want to be doing what you’re doing. How do I get started?” I’m like a nobody at this point, right? Like just a partner. She was like, I don’t know if she answered the first email, but I know the second email she answered and she was like, “Wow, your passion!” I wrote this long story. She was like, “This passion is really nice to see. Hang tight. There might be something, but in the meantime just try to do your own type of projects.” I did like a little show on my channel or whatever.
Then they hit me up and they said, “We’re going to host a workshop to teach people about hosting.” I got selected. You had to apply for it. I got selected. I think there were like maybe 20 people, maybe less, who got selected to go to Twitch headquarters at the time and learn from the best of the best in the industry. There were people there that I idolized, like Kelly Link was there. Rachel Sessler was there. Of course DJ Wheat, and all these other people there. I remember seeing Rachel, one of the only women, Rachel and Kelly Link do esports for Blizzard and BlizzCon and stuff. I was just like, “Oh my gosh, oh, they’re here.” I was fanboying, and their manager, which I didn’t know he was there, he looks way younger than what he is, named Andrew, pulled me aside and he said, “Yes, I’ve known DJ Wheat for 10 years and he’s never talked about somebody as much as he talked about you when it comes to talent.”
I was like, what? I was always the one taking notes when everybody was joking around and laughing. I was so serious. I was writing notes about everything. They could sneeze and I put “Sneeze.” I was serious about hosting. Did a demo reel and I did really well. Got on a plane to go back and I’m sitting down, I’m like, “Wow, that was such a great experience,” in my head. I’m sitting down next to this old lady and I got a text message saying if I’m not busy to call. I picked up the phone, I said, “Hello, did I leave something there?” They were like, “Hey, you did an awesome job and everyone is talking about you. Would you like to host PAX West?” I was like, “What?” I was just crying. The old lady was like, “Are you okay? Did someone die?”
Tubefilter: [laughs] PAX West, though! That’s huge. Wow.
Techniq: I was like, “Yes, yes. What do I have to do?” At the time I was working in the hospital, so I just took off a week, I was getting to ask for more time off. At that point I was like, I don’t care, I’ll quit my job. I went on to host PAX West, PAX East, Comic Con, E3. You name it, I hosted it. I just became a part of this Twitch studio family. That was the best. I think that was one of the best news I’ve ever had, my whole entire life because it’s my element to be on camera and I love it.
Tubefilter: Definitely better than a disastrous phone call.
Techniq: Could have been. Me freaking out. I had a mini heart attack. It was great.
Just throwing this to the wind for some positive reinforcement.
If any company needs an actor, voice actor, host for any games, events, shows, short or long term projects please consider me. My inbox dms are open!
I’m just looking to bring some excitement and joy to people! pic.twitter.com/hrFi12eomc
— Frank Ellerbe | Techniq (@TechniqTV) April 1, 2023
Tubefilter: Things turned out for the best. What was the catalyst for you to go full-time on Twitch? Was there a specific follower count or specific income number?
Techniq: There’s a couple of things. This is a great question. First of all, it was very damaging to my mental health doing both–working a nine-to-five and doing Twitch, because I fell under the curse of the invisible ceiling. The invisible ceiling is like, you do really great, everyone’s like, “Oh my god, you’re so great at your job,” but you never go past that ceiling point. Twitch was the same way. I did really well on Twitch. Then it started declining because more people started coming into Twitch, and more categories came.
When gaming became the lesser and Just Chatting came, it was hard to maintain a concurrent viewer count when everybody’s rating you on how many viewers you have. First, it was for me to break the stigma that viewer count matters more than your personality. Still people to this day have a problem with it. I sometimes get caught up in that, but you can’t let viewer count rattle you, because viewer count is so fluctuating. You can have 500 people one day and then have 70 people the next day. It’s not because you’re a bad entertainer. People have lives, there’s other games people want to see. Some people just have other agendas. That’s something I had to get over.
With my job, I didn’t like my job, I did not like my manager. I did my job to my fullest extent and did really well. My manager just, I guess he was afraid of me taking his job or something, and they made it very difficult for me to want to stay. But I don’t just jump in the river without knowing what’s in it, right? I made a plan and I said, “My plan is I need to get to a certain amount of money so that I can live a year without paying bills.” You always got to prepare for the worst. My goal was raise $50,000. It’s pretty good. When I got to $50,000, the fear took over and I was like, “Ah, maybe I should go $100,000 because emergencies, right? Hospital bills and stuff like that, they can hit you hard.”
I did that, I got to that, and then I was like, “Maybe I should do more.” I kept making excuses because taking risks…I was afraid. I kept hearing my mom in my head. Well, the one day they pissed me off so bad at work. I was like, “I’m done. Boom. Two weeks’ notice, here you go.” I took a risk, I took a chance, but before I did that, I changed my name and rebranded, because I never made a name for myself. My name used to be DJ Tech Live and I hated it because it was not what I wanted. I changed it to Techniq, and everything worked after that. My attitude changed everything. That was the bump. I’m still going. I’m doing something right.
Tubefilter: How have things evolved since then? What’s your current schedule?
Techniq: This job is not for the weak. I work harder than I’ve ever worked in my whole entire life. I stream six days a week. Typically eight hours a day. What I do is I do split streams now. I started getting smarter when I first started. I was like, I can stream every single day to make sure people know that I’m around, blah, blah, blah. I always took off one day. Now the way I do it is, since this is my only job, if I have hosting to do or a voice acting session or an audition, then I make sure that I cut my time. I’m not afraid to cut off. Typically I go from 9:30 or 10 a.m. till about 4 p.m., take a break, and then come back for a bonus stream after, which typically makes up my eight hours.
Since I do six days a week including weekends, you can play with variables and stuff like that. You can go like four or six hours instead of eight hours or some days you’re not feeling well, you can do four hours. I at least do half of this my guaranteed time, and I split it up just to make sure my health is good and my mental health is great because there’s some days I just don’t want to be on cam.
Tubefilter: Which I feel like is a very understandable feeling, but I also feel like a lot of people don’t really talk about that. I feel like it’s a little bit taboo to be like, “Hey, I’m really not into it today.”
Techniq: Yes. People are afraid.
Tubefilter: Can you tell me a little bit about your community?
Techniq: Yes, sure. Absolutely. The community is very interesting. That’s one thing I knew that I had to start thinking about early on in Twitch is like, what community do I want to build? Do I want the fast route with a lot of viewers or do I want the quality route? It may suffer the long road. There’s always shortcuts. When I first started and I started getting a lot of viewers because I was an MMO streamer, there wasn’t many MMO streamers, especially MMO streamers that look like me. Everyone wanted to know my ideas and my thoughts on stuff. I ain’t been playing MMO since MMO started.
I started getting those people in and I had a lot of toxic people on my channel say whatever they want to say, call me names but it was a lot of viewers, right? I had to ask myself, do I want this to be the continuation of what I want to be known for on Twitch? Just having a really toxic chat. Yes, there might be 300 to 500 people in here, but they’re just spamming. They’re not there for me. They’re there to make fun of me and like just spam, random stuff. I cut that off really early. I made very strict rules. I put a model for my channel saying this is a safe place for anybody with any preferences, with any thoughts. As long as you respect each other. This is a cool place for everyone.
With that, I started getting more mature people, older people. My community typically runs anywhere between 28 and up. I have a lot of 30s and 40s. I have some 50s. I even have somebody that’s 70 years old watching my channel. I have a lot of older viewers, which means the quality is there, but the viewership is like this, if there’s a new release then I get big numbers. Obviously, because people want to know what I think, but if it comes to games that I enjoy and stuff, I typically, my community falls around anywhere between 100 to 200 people.
They’re older working individuals and I stream during the day. A lot of them use me as a podcast more than a viewing platform.
Tubefilter: That’s really fascinating, actually. I think you’re the first person I’ve talked to who’s like, “Yes, my audience is in that specific age bracket.” I still feel like the whole industry treats viewers of YouTube and Twitch and TikTok content as people who are in their teens to like 30, and then those people disappear from the face of the earth post-30. People don’t really talk about older viewers. Do you have any insight into why they find you?
Techniq: The average gaming age by research that I’ve done like a year ago or so a year before that is our own 30. The 30s to 40s, that’s like the average consumer with games surprisingly enough. I myself is I’m 39 years old so it’s like relatability. A lot of people don’t believe that I’m that age when they come in, but I think I just have that kind of, I guess, charisma that I am older. I don’t play with words that are hurtful to people. My chat rules are pretty mature. I don’t do a mature setting on my channel because I don’t do mature content but at the same time, people just get the vibe. Younger people come on my channel and if they don’t want to just vibe it out a lot of people want that very hype momentum stuff.
That’s not me. I’m just like chill, relax sometimes we might laugh about some stuff like the other day I was talking about ’90s commercials the kids ain’t know nothing about that. It is interesting, but I think that’s pretty much why people stick by. The way I stream, I stream during the morning time so a lot of working people watch, a lot of people are in school so that’s one thing or I get EU crowds and at night when I stream, I stream pretty late. If I do a bonus stream it starts around 9:00 PM so a lot of those teenagers are probably in bed by then. If they’re not in bed, they’re probably watching something or doing something else, or gaming themselves. I’m pretty sure I still get some teens, they probably just don’t talk as much. Most of the people who talk are older because the stuff that I talk about is stuff that older people would know about. I think that’s probably has something to do with it.
Tubefilter: How has your community grown? Obviously Twitch as a whole has grown throughout COVID, so how has your community and your platform on Twitch grown over the past couple of years?
Techniq: Ooh, it’s been an up-and-down rollercoaster ride. There’s months that I’m just like, “Whoa, this is way faster than I expected.” Where there was a time where I was getting close to the thousands and then the thousands like daily, it just depends on the game that I play. Twitch as a platform has evolved from just a gaming platform so it’s actually harder to grow now as a gamer than it is anything else. What people are interested in now and I could grow my stream instantly more if I wanted to by traveling because that’s what people want. People desire things that they can’t have immediately and are more interested in stuff like that. If I was traveling to Japan and doing a blog about or vlog about Japan and I’m like here I am, this is where I went to school and this was that, and the other the viewership would jump exponentially because people are interested in that because they can’t just go out there and do that.
Gaming, on the other hand, has taken a step back, because there’s so many other categories on Twitch which is not just a gaming site anymore, it’s an entertainment site. You can look at Twitch almost in a Netflix kind of way. The thing that separates YouTube and Twitch is YouTube’s discoverability is a lot better because people go for specific things on YouTube. If I want to know about something, I would go look it up, I would type it in and find all that. On Twitch you just kind of get sucked in.
They made it better with the viewers not having like the biggest streamers at the top. You can sort it differently and stuff, but over the years, it was hard. I’m not going to lie. There was times where I felt like I can’t do this anymore, my viewership is tanking. There’d be one day I’d be at 500 and there was one day that I went down to like 30 viewers for a day, and I was like, What is going on? That just took my soul away. The first thing I did was stop watching v-count. Got to stop. Secondly, if you’re having fun, people will watch you. I went with that and it started going up again. Then you’ll have your high months with subs and viewers and you have your low months with subs and viewers. Right now it’s pretty steady like I said, around 100 to 200 people. I have to just be okay with that and tell myself like if this was a house party and I had to entertain 200 people that’s a lot of people.
If you have to entertain 10 people in your house, that’s a lot of people. I had to go with that mindset and it’s steady now and it’ll grow and I’m getting more new people in my chat now. That’s the important thing. It’s not about the view count for the day, it’s about if you’re getting new viewers each day that’s the more important number. The number’s always positive, unique views but the new viewers I’ve gotten way more new viewers in the past year than I have in three years.
Tubefilter: Do you know where they’re coming from? Do they tell you “I found you through X way”?
Techniq: Sometimes they don’t say that, but there are analytics that you could look at on Twitch and a dashboard and tells you where people come from. If it’s an outside website if it’s inside. Twitch did this wonderful thing called recommended on the front page. It’s not on the carousel but depending on the content that you consume it recommends said streamers for that. There’s times where I pop up and somebody’s recommended they’re like, “Hey, I came in, you’re on front page.” And I’m not literally on the front page, I’m on their front page, you know what I mean? Like under their recommended section. They come in, they’re like, “Man, you’re a pretty chill guy. This is really cool. It’s a nice place to hang out.” That happens that way.
If I wanted to be better about discoverability I’d make a TikTok or something or be more serious about YouTube and that will bring people in. Some people have seen me from commercials. Lately that’s been the biggest. They’ve been like, “Yo, were you on a Papa John’s commercial? Was that you? I can’t believe I’m watching.” That’s what been really bringing people in. They started noticing me in productions, whether it’s commercials or short films or something like that. Then they’ll come in. I’d say that. Yes, that’s like a little heart tickle. You’re like, “Oh, okay, thanks!”
Tubefilter: That actually was my next question. You said Twitch has really helped you get voice acting roles and helped grow your career. Can you talk about the symbiotic relationship between being on Twitch and having your acting career?
Techniq: Yes, for sure. Twitch is a very interesting site because you never know who’s watching you. There’s so many celebrities on Twitch, I’m not going to bring them all out, but there are so many celebrities on Twitch and they have accounts where obviously most of them is not their name but they’ll do something to some kind of variation of their name or whatever like that but they watch these streams and I always tell people, it doesn’t matter how many of views you’re having in your channel, you might have somebody important watching your stream. There’s been times I’ve had actors watch my stream and then they followed me on Twitter and I’m like, “Yo, where’d you find me on Twitter?” They’re like, “Yo, I saw your Twitch stream, it was pretty good.” Directors, writers, all kinds of stuff.
I play a lot of RPGs on my channel and some RPGs are very text-heavy. What I do, my acting coach is like, “You need to be reading voiceover an hour a day.” Those RPGs that have characters who don’t have a voice, I put voices on them. Like last night I was playing this old man, I was like, “Oh, this is amazing. This is a great thing right here.” People will hear that or a director might be in there or a game developer might watch me doing voiceover for their game that doesn’t have voiceovers. You never know what that leads to because the industry is this small.
Typically that’s how it opens doors for me. Somebody will hear me and they’ll send me a message to my talent or my agent. My agent will contact me and say, “Hey, this person wants you to do voiceover for this for that and they love your voice and you have a great speaking voice. You should host this.” I don’t have a reel right now, one that’s up to date, but having live feeds and stuff and some people just clip it. I noticed that people clip random things and they send it to people. That’s how it’s happened. It’s like free advertising of your voice.
Tubefilter: I had a question I wanted to go back to. You said you used to be really shy, which I find hard to believe, but can you tell me how building a Twitch community helped bring you out of your shell?
Techniq: Yes. Again, growing up an only child and not having any brothers or sisters and/or too many friends, you become very introverted into yourself and you become very afraid about what the outside world thinks about you. I hated my voice. I still don’t like it. I don’t think anybody likes their voice but when I started I was so scared, and shy. People would come into my stream I’m, “Oh my God, thank you so very much for coming to my stream. Thanks so much for being here. Please enter this giveaway, [laughs] please enter this giveaway. Thank you for entering the giveaway.” I would thank them for everything. I was just very socially awkward. That was just my anxiety taking over. When I feel awkward, I speak really fast. I had a mic that made me sound very bad [chuckle]. Like I said, a cheap setup. It was really, really hard. The one thing that I could do well is talk to myself because that’s what I did all my life.
I had to create personas to not feel lonely. When I’d be playing the game, I’d be, “Oh, wonder of what’s in this chest? Oh, that’s cool. Oh, you think you’re going to get me out?” I would literally just sit there and talk to the game, so to speak. People would come in and people wouldn’t say anything but they’ll laugh, they’ll be “LOL, oh my God, you’re hilarious.” I’d read what they say but I’d be playing the game and I get so into it that, I guess, it was entertaining. There was a point in time were I was just, I got to become a better public speaker, I have to be better at being more charming and charismatic. I want people to come in and think that this is a great place to not only watch me act a fool and scream at things but to feel welcomed and feel like they have a friend that they can relate to.
Slowly, over the years, the shell just started breaking. Here I am today not afraid to jump in front of a hundred people and host panels and stuff like that. I still get the sweats sometimes if I’m up on– especially on a stage or a theater and I see a ton of people and I’m just. I can’t mess up. I think living with the fact that it’s okay to mess up and it’s okay to not be perfect all the time, that really helped me grow as a person.
Tubefilter: I can imagine PAX was tough then.
Techniq: That first hosting, I was really nervous. This was funny. Twitch, when you think of Twitch, you don’t think about people in suits. I was in a full-blown suit because that’s what I thought. That’s how I was.
Tubefilter: Oh no.
Techniq: It was horrible. Good thing is, I’m a pretty beefy guy, I lift weights and stuff. People ain’t going to pick on me–in my face, at least. [laughs] I was sitting there a full-blown suit, and I was hosting but I was making it like CNN. “Welcome to CNN.” When we were hosting E3, that was my dream ever since I was small. It was my dream, hosting E3. I came in a shirt and tie. It was a Spider-Man tie because I’m a huge Spider-Man fan. Spider-Man socks too. But I had on a nice, burgundy shirt and pants, slacks, whatever.
I got pulled to the side. Merry [Kish, Twitch’s head of community] was like, “I just want to talk to you about something later, okay? Just remind me.”
After, we went to a party. Everyone’s loose. We had a couple of drinks. Everybody’s loose and feeling good. She came to me and she said, “I just want to say if you wear a shirt-and-tie suit to another hosting gig, I‘m going to rip you off that desk so fast. This is Twitch!”
I was like, “Oh.”
She was like, “Come on! Nobody wants to see you in a suit! Everybody wants to relate to you.” I was like, “You’re so right.”
The next day, I didn’t have a change of clothes, but I loosened up, I rolled my sleeves up, pulled my tie down, and put my foot up on the desk and pulled back my socks and show Spider-Man. I could hear Ezekiel III in the background, he was like, “Yes, there he is!” It was hilarious. That’s where my popularity skyrocketed on Twitch. People were like, “This guy is nuts. He’s fun.”
Tubefilter: I mean, showing up awkward in a suit and tie was very Peter Parker of you, I must say.
Techniq: Yes, exactly! There you go.
Tubefilter: A full suit…
Techniq: Yes, wild. I would laugh at that version of me. I got to make it memorable and unfortunately I did. Or fortunately.
Tubefilter: I’d say fortunately. What are your plans for the coming year? I know you probably can’t spoil a lot, but any projects you want to talk about, any goals you have?
Techniq: Well, the first plan is Tropic Thunder: “Survive.” Every year is a survival. As a contractor, you contract yourself out. I have my own business, obviously as a LLC right now. I plan to go small S-Corp, LLC soon because you got to learn, you got to learn all those games about how to maintain a business and make sure you’re not paying more than you’re receiving and all that stuff. I finally caved in on an agency. I’ve been burned before by agents and I finally found one I think that’s in my best interest. That’s really hard because I can see the emails and I want to answer so bad because I’m so used to doing it myself. I got to let them take care of it.
I do have plans. Some things I cannot speak about, but I have some things releasing this year, which is going to be good. James Gunn just announced a bunch of DC stuff that they’re going to be working on the next few years. I plan on going for those auditions. Marvel is the goal. Everybody wants to be in a Marvel film nowadays, I mean, it’s the only thing that’s really making money in the industry. If that can happen, I’ll go out for those auditions, fail, and be happy with it. Failures are the building blocks of success, as I still say.
Other than that, I want to be able to just keep making a footprint in the industry and making people smile and laugh. I love improv, it’s what I’m good at. Definitely going to start pushing myself more to put myself in more auditions and stop saying, “Oh, this is a AAA game. I’m going to have to go against Liam and Matt Mercer in the critical role.” I got to just throw myself out there because there could be a role that I’m good at that they want for me. There’s a lot that goes into picking somebody for voice acting. You’re never going to succeed unless you just do it. Then if you fail, then it’s great, it’s okay. You put yourself in there. That’s a stepping stone for me.
I’m being more honest with myself on a lot of things and just going with the flow and taking more risks. I want to define my goals, so to speak.
Big projects-wise, do I have something releasing this year that’s pretty big. I’m going to try to get on bigger silver screen projects. I have to also mentally prepare myself if I get chosen for a role and they’re shooting over a year in a different location, how will I maintain Twitch? I have to keep that in the back of my head as well. Just remain positive and try to survive this ever so changing industry.
Tubefilter: Anything else that you feel readers should know about you? Anything else that you wanted to touch on?
Techniq: Yes. I’m a very passionate person. I love intellectual conversations. That’s my thing. I can talk about space all day, I can talk about film, comics, anime, you name it, I can talk about it. If I have a very big interest, I become very passionate. If you ever come by the stream or see me on a hosting panel or a podcast, I typically get really loud when I get passionate [chuckles]. Keep that in mind. It’s just because I’m excited. I’m just excited to be able to live this life and be involved with all this entertainment stuff.
When you do things that you never thought as a kid that you’ll be able to do, I never forget that feeling, it’s still deep down inside me. Other than that, I always want to put out there to people, just be kind to one another online. We may have a “tough skin,” I call it, content creator skin. It’s tough on the outside but it’s really soft on the inside. When that camera goes off, we all melt. Just be careful what you say and do.
I’m actually going to be getting into PNGtubing soon for times I don’t want to be on camera. I really want to make that. That’ll be my first step. I saw Ironmouse do it and I was like no, that’s a little too complicated. It’s a little PNG for now and just see how I like it. I love the idea that everyone can feel safe behind that character or a face or something that they make or purchase or whatever and still be able to do this content creation thing. There’s some times I’m just tired and I don’t want to be on screen. Having a PNG is fun. I can do all kinds of stuff, especially since I have the background to do art. Other than that, if you see me on a silver screen or commercial or stuff, come on in and say hi, don’t be shy. I love it. If you see me at a convention, please come up and say something.
Little secret, I don’t call myself a celebrity. If people see me as that, then great but I don’t call it. Celebrities love when people come up to them and say hi, they do it, they love it. It’s the awkward feeling when everyone’s passing you by staring at you. That’s awkward. Just come and say hi. Other than that, I’m happy to do this interview. Thank you for having me. This has been great. I think everybody’s favorite thing is talking about themselves mostly.