The Sophisticated Art of Relaxing Content Creation

While deep, meaningful art, filled with substantial and thought-provoking content is incredibly entertaining, constant exposure to it can certainly become exhausting. It's unreasonable to expect our minds to be able to process the entirety of Linklater's 'Before trilogy' in one day–in fact, I would argue that to fully enjoy dense art, we need to give it time to be fully absorbed by our brains. 

Nevertheless, many people will realize that consuming mindless media can soon become wearisome–their minds still crave for content that is intentional and sophisticated. This is where creators of high-quality relaxing content come to shine. Slice of life films such as Little Forest, Museum Hours, and Kamome Diner are undoubtedly part of this realm; however, in this blog entry, I want to focus on three specific content creators whose relaxing content I truly admire.

The first one is Tom Hitchins, who runs the YouTube channel "Byte Review", as well as a digital lifestyle brand "Kiroku Studio". His videos mainly focus on iPad-related technology reviews, as well as productivity and gaming. The most impressive element of his content is his use of relaxing pastel color combinations and careful choosing of background objects (ranging from Pok√©mon minifigures to monitors playing studio Ghibli films), which combined with his cinematographic b-roll, creates videos that are entertaining, cohesive, and pleasing to the eye. 

Second in the list is illustrator Sai Nitivoranant, founder of LOVESOUP Studio. Her YouTube content ("LOVESOUP") is incredibly atmospheric, and is the true epitome of the slice of life genre–we get to see how she goes on walks, journals, works on her illustrations, and cooks. The color grading on the videos is impressive–conveying warmth without ever looking artificial, while also managing to make a maximalist aesthetic feel astonishingly relaxing. The highlight of Sai's work, however, does not rest on the visuals–it rests on its ability to inspire. From carefully plating her own food, to delicately aligning the piles of mail for her clients, she heavily focuses on being intentional–even when doing the most seamingly meaningless of tasks. 

Last but not least is Morgan Eckroth, winner of the 2022 U.S. Barista Championship. While Morgan's YouTube videos are fun to watch, her Instagram Reels (@morgandrinkscoffee) are the ones I would like to focus on. The reels are 15-second videos featuring Morgan at a coffee shop, having quiet interactions with clients (who are also played by her) as relaxing classical music plays in the background. The reels have no narrative, but they all revolve around interactions highlighting how kindness and empathy can be found even in the smallest of things–in a smile, in a glance, in a cup of coffee.