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TEAM ZOELLA JANUARY 5, 2021

13 Questions With Luke Catleugh

Luke is a self-confessed foodie cooking one delicious thing after another on his Instagram and YouTube channel. You can also find him shopping, decorating, travelling and generally being a beautiful positive ray of light online!

First of all, Happy New Year! What are you looking to get out of 2021?

Happy new year to you too guys! Gosh, 2020 has been a really tough year for everyone and I know we will all be happy to start afresh in 2021. I am really hoping to just be healthy and happy, that will be my priority. I watched one of my first YouTube videos of 2020 back last week and in the video, I was discussing things I wanted to achieve in 2020. I think this year has taught me that so many things are out of our control and that we just need to take it easy sometimes and not put too much pressure on ourselves to smash goals or life achievements. 

If anything, for 2021 I just want to prioritise my health and wellbeing. I think it is super important to check in with yourself regularly, take time out when you need it and really do the things that make your heart happy. My only other hope is that myself and my good friend Zara are going to put the steps in place to hopefully buy a house together which we are beyond excited for if everything goes to plan. Fingers crossed!

Talk us through your career online and how it’s evolved?

Whenever I think of my life online it makes me feel beyond lucky and grateful to call this my job. Like so many others, I grew up watching YouTubers. I was just a little guy in his small room in Durham watching these really cool people make videos from their bedrooms. I would rush home after school and turn on our computer and check to see if anyone had uploaded a new video. 

I started my blog back in 2012 called ‘Luke Does Life’ documenting my outfits and things I had cooked or baked (I haven’t archived the blog as I love to look back at it for the laughs but also just remind myself of how far I have come). 

I got my first job in my local pub at 13, washing dishes on Sundays after people would come for their roast dinners. I stayed there for quite some time until I got a job at Bill’s restaurant in 2013 as a Waiter. I started to take photos of the food that the restaurant served mainly because I loved the menu and was so proud of how far I had come since my pot washing early teen days. The woman who ran the social media accounts for Bill’s spotted my photos and invited me to London to help shoot some food content for Christmas. To this day, we still chat and I am so grateful for everything she taught me. 

I moved to London in September 2016 to start university. I studied Magazine Journalism and Publishing in the hope that I could one day I could be a food writer. I thought whilst being at university I wanted to document my time there. I started my YouTube channel in April 2017. My first video was a trip to Brighton, it was my dream to go one day after watching so many people I loved online visit. I just threw myself into vlogging in pubic. I went on my own and just explored the town, it was by far the most nervous I had ever felt. I worked part-time in coffee shops and retail alongside my degree and filming videos for YouTube on the side. Since then I have graduated from university and have been SO lucky to make YouTube and content creating my full-time job since June 2019. 

What are your favourite things to film for YouTube? 

I absolutely love getting in the kitchen. My whole family are foodies so I have grown up with the kitchen being the heart of the home. I love filming my 5-midweek meal ideas and any baking videos just bring me so much joy! 

I also really love vlogs, they are the reason I started YouTube. I am a big one for memories and love to document everything I do. I keep receipts, tickets, essentially anything I can that remind me of a time in my life. So daily/weekly vlogs are so lovely to film and watch back. 

We love your second IG account @lukecatleugheats have you always been into cooking and food?

Ahh thank you so much! I really need to get back into posting on there more often. I found myself gearing more towards YouTube for my food content as I found it easier to share visually and talk through the process. 

 For me, food is everything. It is the first thing I think of when I wake up and arguably the last thing I think of when I go to bed. Food is memories and it transports me back to a happy place. My Nana’s cakes were legendary and my Mam’s roast is second to none, these memories of food are my happy place. I remember one day I came home from school and used a spare notepad I had to start writing down everything my Mam cooked in the hope that one day, I could cook like her. I still have it to this day, although my handwriting is pretty illegible ha! 

What are some of your top goals you’d like to achieve in your career?

I would honestly say that doing what I get to do for a job makes me feel like the luckiest person alive. 

It would be a dream to one day release a cookbook. I know it sounds cliche and it’s a big goal but I would absolutely love to. I know they are SO much work, you literally have to try and test every recipe and there are so many wonderful ones already published, but I would love to do it almost as a memoir of every dish I love. 

We know you like to travel, where is top of your list when we’re able to again?

Oh my goodness I miss travelling. I know it is such a luxury to travel and this year has really reminded me how much I enjoy it. 

I solo travelled before I went to university for two months across America. It was the scariest thing I have ever done but by far the best. I really want to return to New York, it’s my favourite city in the world. 

 I would also absolutely love to go somewhere new and I feel like my skin needs some serious vitamin D. Any remote island would be a dream. I love Greece, the Mamma Mia island Skopelos or Naxos would be amazing just to get stuck into a good book and fully relax. 

What would you say is your biggest achievement to date?

I would say moving to London and really pushing myself out of my comfort zone. I got so stuck in my life and knew from a very early age that I wanted to see more of the world and meet more people. It was by far the best thing I did and gave me the confidence to put myself online. I really struggled with my self worth and saying yes to anything. However, since moving to London it really showed me that I can do anything if I am willing to say yes. 

What are you currently working on?

I don’t have any big projects at the moment, I just really want to focus on refining my content on YouTube and keeping a balance between food and lifestyle videos. I absolutely love creating recipe videos and a lot of viewers are asking for an online guide/virtual recipe book where they can see everything I have made. I have that on my list of things I would like to make for 2021!

Who are some of your favourite follows online?

I follow people online who bring me happiness and comfort from all walks of life and who share a variation of content. Some of my favourites are: 

@lisadawson – she shares gorgeous interior content on Instagram and her stories are so real and honest about life online and also being a mum! 

@iamtabithabrown – is possibly one of the most infectiously positive people I have ever followed. Her outlook on life, her recipes and her smile genuinely brightens my day. 

@Lonefoxhome – Drew Scott – one of the OG interior YouTubers, his DIY’s are amazing and the spaces her creates are incredible. 

@theptchef – Oli Brandon I am fairly new to TikTok (I am yet to post anything but I love what others create) – his recipes are so easy to follow and genuinely make me want to get in the kitchen and try something new! 

What do you always carry with you?

My camera I use to vlog, I rarely leave the house without it. It’s the classic G7X ii, by far the best point and shoot camera I have owned. It takes great photos, video and also is the perfect pocket size and of course hand sanitiser and a face covering (the bolder the better!)

What does your perfect weekend look like?

About a year ago, I would have said getting lost in the streets of a city I had never been to. But the year just gone has given me a whole new sense of appreciation and gratitude for my home and how lucky we are to have such a lovely space. 

So my perfect weekend would probably be spent watching movies, reading, going for long walks with my families little Labrador who I miss dearly and lots of baking. Sandwich in a cheeky nap and that right there is my idea of perfection. 

If you could only eat one meal again what would it be?

Pasta of ANY kind. I have repeatedly asked my Mam if we have some Mediterranean or Italian heritage in our family because I could genuinely eat pasta for the rest of my life. I had the most incredible garlic, lemon and chilli linguine in Florence a couple of years back and to this day, it remains my favourite meal I have ever eaten. So simple but mouthwateringly tasty. 

If you could give one positive message to our followers what would it be? 

One of my favourite quotes is “Happiness can be found in the darkest of places, if only one remembers to turn on the light”. 

I have really found that given the year we have just had, always remember there is light at the end of the tunnel. It may be dim or hard to see at times, but persevere and you will see it. Life can be really tough, so cherish every moment, ride the highs and the lows and remember that nothing ever good comes easy. 

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