Oh. Hi, Reddit! I'm Kevin Lieber, producer and host of Vsauce2, a YouTube channel where I make videos about logic and reasoning on my whiteboard table. I just launched a podcast called The Create Unknown that explores the good, the bad, and the weird of being an online creator. Our first two episodes of The Create Unknown released last night.

I also just got back from Vienna where I gave a TEDx talk about door knobs, scurvy and drinking toilet water. Obviously.

MY PROOF: https://www.instagram.com/p/BpQGh5Ugyej

My Twitter

My Instagram

EDIT: That's all, folks! Thank you to everyone who asked questions! I really appreciate you watching my videos and hope you enjoy the new podcast, The Create Unknown. Let me know on Twitter who you'd like me to interview on future episodes!

Comments: 128 • Responses: 30  • Date: 

grande189951 karma

Who's your favorite podcast guest and why is it me?

KevinLieber34 karma

Because of questions like this, Doctor.

majestic_burger25 karma

How much work do you do with Jake and Michael, what's the relationship between the 3 channels?

KevinLieber28 karma

We work very, very closely together on The Curiosity Box. That project means a lot to us and it really is a collaborative process. From testing and proposing items, books, developing the t-shirt designs and packaging designs -- everything.

When it comes to the channels, we are completely independent. We don't interfere with each other's creative process or visions and really the only times we check in with each other may be regarding feedback on a title or thumbnail.

fancypantsman2317 karma

Hey Kevin! I’m super stoked I finally got to an AMA this early, and yours no less!

So uh... what’s your favorite pizza topping?

KevinLieber22 karma

Pepperoni because I like the simplicity of that. I'm cool with trying other toppings every now and then but sometimes there are so many toppings it's not even like pizza anymore -- its just like a topping-pile you consume through an edible bread plate. I don't know if that makes sense in words. Makes sense in my head.

MeloneKnight13 karma

What does "The Create Unknown" mean? Why did you pick that name?

KevinLieber12 karma

I'm fascinating by creativity and the people who dedicate their lives to making things. The Create Unknown is a play off "The Great Unknown" which is a relatively common phrase. So to me The Create Unknown is a domain where people who create for a living can discuss what that process is like, what's great about it, what's not so great about it, and what's weird about it. And The Create Unknown can feature a wide range of creators from science communicators, cartoonists, comedians, makeup gurus, and so on.

cAtloVeR999812 karma

How long does it take to make one of your videos?

KevinLieber13 karma

Oh it depends on the type of video. So the "Human Experience" videos like The Cure We Forgot, The Water Fountain You Pee In, and The Millions Year War took around 600 hours. Roughly 6-7 weeks. The videos I've been doing lately on the whiteboard table take about two weeks. I work 7 days a week but typically do half days on Saturday/Sunday unless there's a pressing deadline.

TurnedUpbeat12 karma

Would you rather chug 5 gallons of ketchup or tongue kiss a monkey for 5 minutes?

KevinLieber17 karma


TaborTots3618 karma

please answer this in detail


KevinLieber31 karma

Well, although the word "chug" implies I'd have to do it quickly -- there is no time limit given in the question. So my definition of chug could be any amount of time. It also doesn't preclude french fries being involved. Essentially, I'll just consume 5 gallons of ketchup at my leisure -- which I do anyway.

I'm not french kissing a monkey.

leonidasuniqua12 karma

Is Michael gonna upload or is Vsauce dead?

KevinLieber18 karma

Yes he will upload! No it is not dead. He's put out some great videos on the D.O.N.G. channel for you to check out in the meantime.

LetsdothisEpic11 karma

How did you get started as Vsauce2? Did Michael ask you or did you ask him? Was it mutual?

KevinLieber27 karma

Michael found my personal channel where I was doing a show called Uninformed Videogame Reviews. Vsauce started as a collaborative videogame comedy channel and he emailed me out of the blue asking if I wanted to upload my show to his new channel called Vsauce. A lot of people were contributing to the channel at that time including Wacky Gamer, Screenteam and BlackNerdComedy. Michael and I have a very similar senses of humor so we just kind of clicked. I started doing shows like Mind Blow and FAK while Michael was doing shows like IMG! and LÜT on both Vsauce and Vsauce2. Eventually we realized it made sense for us to each host one of the channels so he focused on Vsauce and I focused on Vsauce2.

Dagnir-Glaurunga8 karma

How is Vsauce in real life?

KevinLieber13 karma

What is Michael like in real life? Exactly like he is in his videos.

clowns_will_eat_me8 karma

Other than your own, what are some of your favorite youtube channels and/or podcasts?

KevinLieber14 karma

Jacksfilms, Idubbbz, grandayy, dolan dark, joe hanson, maxmoefoe, rick beato, redlettermedia, blamesocietyfilms, austin evans, happyconsolegamer, many many more. Vsauce and Vsauce3 ;)

I have a very special place in my heart for YouTubers which is why I wanted to do this new podcast. I think YouTubers are super weird and super awesome.

WeinerPizzaBoy6 karma

Why is Michael cooler than you?

KevinLieber16 karma

Michael is cooler than everyone so by default he is cooler than me.

Ssenkard5 karma

I know you're a fan of Gojira and Meshuggah, but what other bands do you enjoying listening to? The podcast is fantastic, btw!

KevinLieber4 karma


Yann Tiersen, Chelsea Wolfe, Elder, Seven, Pallbearer, TOOL, ASAP Ferg, Soen, Behemoth, are some of whom I've been listening to lately. The first band I ever adored was Nirvana, though. They changed my life. It was the first time I saw artists who really didn't seem to care about what the world thought of them and they just did what came naturally out of their hearts.

chuvering5 karma

Who from history would you love to interview on your podcast? What would you want to learn from them?

KevinLieber5 karma

Charlie Chaplin. He is an absolute hero of mine and I consider him the first YouTuber. He did absolutely everything from creating, writing, directing, performing. He was a genius. I would just want to learn about how he thought of the world, and how best to live a full life as a creative person.

Iglooset4 karma

Hey Kev! It’s Isaac (the one who keeps sending you links to watch my Off The Air series).

Listening to the episode with SmarterEveryDay (loving the podcast so far), and I noticed you mentioned you went to film school. Do you think it’s still worth it do to so? I’m taking classes at two community colleges toward a digital media degree, but I may have to transfer everything to a different college or find a film school that will take the credits I currently have. What do you think is hard to learn outside of a film school but is simple to do us within one, and what did you learn outside of said film school that you wish you did?

Thanks again! Hope to see you at VidCon this coming year :D Isaac

KevinLieber7 karma

Hey! I found the social benefits of going to school far outweighed the academic ones. For me, it forced me to learn how to work with others, what my strengths were and what my weaknesses are. You can learn academic things on your own. But the social learning is impossible to do at home sitting on the computer. And both are vital.

TheMinishZest3 karma

Do you like any anime (that isn’t some Miyazaki or Ghibli film)?

KevinLieber5 karma

Yeah! Evangelion, Berserk (the original, haven't watched the new one), Cowboy Bebop, Vampire Hunter D, Space Adventure Cobra, Escaflowne, Trigun, Ninja Scroll, Record of Lodoss War, Akira, and probably a bunch I'm forgetting. I know you wanted to eliminate Miyazaki but I really love Nausicaa.

GhostofMattClement3 karma

In your video, you said you partnered with people for the logo and music. How do you find these people and what do you look for in finding artists to partner with?

KevinLieber3 karma

Oh they're all people who I'm personally a fan of. I love art, I love music, I follow a ton of artists and musicians. So people like MegaDrive and Blood+Chrome are just people whose work I enjoy and I reached out to collaborate with. Aesthetics are really important to me so I wanted to make sure The Create Unknown was a fully-realized concept from the logo, to the guest portraits, to the music, to the social media posts. I'm very happy with how everything came together but it definitely took a long time and a lot of patience. The logo was actually finished last year!

ThOpi3 karma

Who is a guest you would love to have on the podcast the most?

KevinLieber2 karma

I really want to meet Shaq. I know that's random but I mean... Shaq. Come on. Shaq!

AsaNo883 karma

Hi Kevin! Although I'm not a huge fan of math, I love your works on Vsauce2. I've listened to your podcasts, too.

  1. Are you going to keep making this podcasts as a long term project?

  2. Right now, is there any creator you are most hyping to interview for your podcast?

  3. Also, are you going to invite Vsauce Michael and Vsauce3 Jake to your podcast? I hope you are going to.

Thank you!

EDIT for the numbering.

KevinLieber6 karma

  1. The podcast is a long term project -- yes!

  2. I'm actually excited to speak with everyone on the guest list -- which is part of what I love about the podcast. I've known many of these people for years but never had the opportunity to just sit down and pick their brains for an extended period of time. Like Destin I have known for... I don't know 6 years now? But I learned so much more about him in that conversation than I had in the previous 6 years of our casual interactions.

  3. Jake's episode is already done and will be coming out relatively soon! And I'll be recording with Michael soon as well!

Johannesvh3 karma

Would you recommend me to watch the podcast? Also whats your favorite fruit?

KevinLieber1 karma

Yes! Ummm... grapes are good!

TechGeek163 karma

What is your favourite topic that you've done a video on?

KevinLieber10 karma

I really liked The Invention Of Blue because it surprised me the most. When I started researching, I just wanted to do a video about colors. What are colors? How did we make them in the past? That sort of thing. But the more I read about the history of colors, the more blue stood out as a really really weird story. A story that was very much tied to human development and innovation. And that led me down the path that turned into that video. There's definitely more to the story than what I uncovered and that's one thing researching these videos has taught me -- we really don't know a whole lot about ourselves or our history.

Connerss2 karma

What video games do you enjoy in your past time?

KevinLieber5 karma

Huge fan of "soulsborne" games. So all the Dark Souls, Bloodborne and Nioh. Looking forward to Code Vein. I also loved Witcher 3, Horizon Zero Dawn, Xenoblade Chronicles 2, Persona 5, Divinity Original Sin.

I am really looking forward to Sekiro. Also, Red Dead Redemption 2 came out today but UPS hasn't shown up yet with it. haha

porterism2 karma

What are the challenges facing online content creators today that creators didn't face 10 years ago?

KevinLieber6 karma

You have to have a really unique idea now since we're all so flooded with entertainment options. When we first started building out Vsauce we had so many ideas for shows that were brand new at the time that seem so basic now. Like Michael created LÜT just to show strange products you could buy. Now there are countless entire channels dedicated to that. FAK just stood for "Facts And Knowledge" and I just did videos about like laser beams and crossbows. One example of a new-ish creator who had a fresh idea is TierZoo. Treating biology like video game character builds was such a weird and awesome idea. But now it takes that level of creativity to stand out. In some ways, it's a good thing, because the barriers to entry force fresh ideas to rise to the surface. But, in general, it makes it tough to get noticed without that awesome new idea.

PerennialPhilosopher2 karma

How do you decide what to make videos about? Like what's your process?

KevinLieber5 karma

It usually starts with one thing I find interesting and then spirals out from there. Then I try to reign in the spiral into a conversational and entertaining video. So I recently started a new series on Vsauce2 I'm really having fun with involving a whiteboard table. My co-host on The Create Unknown podcast, Matt Tabor, actually works with me researching and writing these videos. So he'll look into a bunch of different neat/surprising topics, write a script, and then I go through the script and turn it into a Vsauce2 video. I give his awesome script my own weird spin. And that involves brainstorming the visualizations I put in the video, what I write on the whiteboard table, how the video begins, develops and ends. Whether or not to include action figures. Which action figures. That sort of thing. So it takes about a week of developing the script/concept, and then a week of creating/editing the video. And my beautiful loving wife helps me shoot the videos! And she helps me do weird things like count sugar cubes and spray paint potatoes silver or whatever.

knotanautsee2 karma

What's your morning routine like? What do you eat for breakfast?

KevinLieber3 karma

Okay I like this question b/c my routine is perhaps somewhat strange. I actually drink an energy drink for breakfast instead of coffee and instead of eating food I drink a protein shake. So yeah. I started doing that last year and it really helped my energy levels throughout the day.

Burnside752 karma

Who is your favorite author and other than research, what are you reading currently?

KevinLieber2 karma

Well, my favorite book is A Confederacy Of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole. I've read a lot of Kurt Vonnegut too. I have a painfully long backlog of books ranging from Vinland Saga to Gods In The Darkness to Social Leap by William von Hippel. It's hard to find time to read for leisure because I just end up working on projects all the time.

dressering2 karma

What's it like when you meet someone and they ask what you do for a living and you have to say YouTube? What's their usual reaction?

KevinLieber3 karma

Confusion. Total confusion. "You can make money doing that?" "How do you make money on YouTube?" That sort of thing. It's always confusion. And nearly impossible to explain. I should probably just make up a job like bus driver or something. That's easier for people to understand.

dressering2 karma

You mention if it wasn't for YouTube you'd own a bar. What would you call it?

KevinLieber5 karma

My dad always wanted to have a restaurant called "Clementines" for some reason. He just thought that was a nice name. So I'd probably name it that.

Dimi64242 karma

What field in mathematics is the most interesting to you?

KevinLieber4 karma

Right now it's definitely probability. I love how simple math ends up being surprising/confusing to people. There are many comments in some of my recent videos where people are trying to argue that my math is wrong. It's not wrong -- we just think it is because it may be counter intuitive! Which I find really intriguing and entertaining.

puntini1 karma

Who are your favorite heroes and villains from Marvel and DC?

KevinLieber2 karma

I am a Spiderman guy. Have been since I was a kid growing up in the 80s with that awesome saturday morning cartoon. DC is all about Batman -- for sure.

I love the Punisher Netflix show and the Daredevil Netflix show. Kingpin on the Daredevil show is a great, great, villain.