Neighbourhood Series: An Interview with Kaushik Kumar, Founder of Dark Matter
We chatted with local video producer Kaushik Kumar about his passion for creating compelling content, what motivated him to start his own business growth consultancy in Ōtautahi and his favourite places to visit both in and around the city.
Born in Fiji, Kaushik spent his childhood growing up between Nadi and Ōtautahi.
At an early age, he recognised he had a knack for creativity and initially had his eyes set on studying graphic design at university. Plans changed, however, when he received a scholarship from Ara Institute to study engineering.
Deciding it was best to capitalise on the scholarship, Kaushik enrolled at Ara and obtained a Bachelor of Civil Engineering in 2017. But after a year working in the engineering industry, he felt a creative calling that couldn’t be ignored.
During university, Kaushik had dabbled in some graphic design freelance work which later turned into freelance filming and videography. “My cousin is a professional photographer and showed me the ropes when I professed that I wanted to learn more about photography and film”, Kaushik explained. “I learned a lot from him at the start and then the rest was mostly self-taught from online courses and a lot of trial and error.”
In 2018, with about $3,000 in his bank account, Kaushik purchased a $700 camera and devoted his time to becoming a skilled videographer. When he was confident in his ability and ready to start promoting his services to the public, he started boosting his profile in the Ōtautahi community by attending local networking events and offering up his services for free.
Fortunately, the plunge into the deep end worked out well for Kaushik and after a few years excelling in the freelance world, he opened the doors to Dark Matter – a business growth consultancy offering a range of video production and coaching services and a ‘done-by-you’ studio space in the heart of Ōtautahi.
He books out the studio space by the hour, encouraging people to come in and record their videos or podcasts in a comfortable, quiet and prepared environment on their own. If needed, Kaushik and his crew are on hand to support and guide clients through the process and can also handle the editing to make it even easier.
While people can come in and produce a one-off video alongside the Dark Matter team, Kaushik recognised that a lot of the clients he was working with achieved the best results when they shared consistent content. So, to give his clients a more accessible and consistent production option, he started a subscription-based service, offering people the option to produce five to ten videos every month, helping drive results.
“What makes Dark Matter different from other consultancies is the subscription model that we offer and the space we provide”, Kaushik explained. “People have the option to come in and use the space once or multiple times a month to create content and can do it on their own or with some guidance and help from the team.” From a wide range of backdrops, changing room and shower facilities to different lighting and audio options, the studio has got it all.
Up and running for over a year now, Kaushik and the team at Dark Matter work with a wide range of clients in several different industries to create online courses, podcasts, social media content, case studies and more. He’s become well known in the Ōtautahi community for his incredible videography and, recently, was one of a handful of New Zealanders selected for the 2022 Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia list.
When Kaushik’s not busy managing Dark Matter and facilitating client work, he spends his time developing his skills, working on personal projects such as his Zero to CEO podcast, or helping connect local businesses at LinkedIn Local. Whether it’s a personal or professional project, Kaushik explained that his favourite part about being a videographer is being part of the creative process from start to finish and watching an innovative project come to fruition.
Kaushik explained that his favourite thing about Christchurch is that the city is the epicentre of stunning scenery. “I love being surrounded by the ocean, rivers, lakes and hills. There’s something for everyone and within such a short driving distance. The creative energy, coffee culture and delicious food scene are also a big bonus.”
Listed below are a few of Kaushik’s favourite places to visit both in and around the city.
Go to cafe
This series is brought to you by our Creative and Digital Partner, Publica.