Unlocking the Art of Web Series

As if blogging was not enough of work and adventures for me so far . I have tried my hand on self publishing and authored four books selling online on the net . I have also done a lot of v logging in the past year or so and produced more then 150 videos so far for my youtube
challenge . As if that wasn’t enough I haver decided to venture into producing and acting in my own web series on a book written by me . I had no clue how to go about it and was groping in the dark . So this is what I did to start of .


Read a lot of stuff on the net and watched a lot of youtube
video’s first . It is important to know the kind of equipment camera , sound , lights etc one has to use to make a quality web-series. Although a Canon Mark 4 5D is reasonably good to make a short film and web-series , it cannot go beyond 4 k and one has to use many filters if one wants to get footage for a quality film . The most frequently used camera for shooting web-series is RED , it’s Dragon X 5k series is the camera one must use . You can buy it for as much as $19,000 from the net or hire it out for Rs 20,000 a day with an assistant and all accessories . Better still you can use both the above camera for shooting. The other camera which is very effective is the Sony Alpha and Gopro series mind you these are all 4k and not beyond that .You can rent it out at first but if you intend to stay in the web-series game for long buying the camera could be a cheaper option

Story and Screenplay

But before all this make sure you have a story which is simple yet impactful , hopefully you should be able to shoot it in one location , mine is a Campus comedy so all the shooting can be done in a Campus , that save costs . I am making the web-series for a book I had written which is a property in itself as it is selling online . This needs to be covered into a screenplay with character sketches , background sounds and dialogues . Most web-series are 9 to 10 episodes long but their are ones that are as small as 4 episodes . You can decide to shoot on a stretch or shoot only one episode as a pilot . Make sure all your characters are etched out the audience must kn ow their mannerisms, dialects , traits the screenplay should also give cues to their attire and Costume.

Casting : My story is taken form real life experience therefore my characters are also real people who I have meet and shard a rapport with at some stage in my life . You need a guy who can cast for your characters , you can give him the pictures of the real people that you have etched as characters in your story , this will give the casting director greater insight . Once the screenplay is ready , depending on how many characters have been etched in casting can start work . Try had get video auditions from prospective actors . In my case I am taking young not so well known TV actors from Mumbai , some actors from NSD a Radio jockey .Try and focus on good actors and may be you can have two or three known and recognised faces . I am signing Raju Srivastava and Shekhar Suman for my web-series . You need a few known names that are marketable in the industry , so that it gets easier to sell the web-series to finances , sponsors or OTT channels .

Title Track :
Background score , songs and theme music of the series is a must . The web-series must have a signature tune that tells the audience that it has started . It is good to write the them song or jingle along with background score for that you need a music arranger .

A music arranger is a music director who selects the voices for the track along with the instruments that will be used and choreographs the sound track during the recording , he also oversees the editing and mixing of the track .Depending on the screenplay one can elect a number of songs . Hopefully I had written down the lyrics of my title track and covered some of my poems into songs . Be in a look out of peculiar voices , untrained sounds some thing that gives a peculiar reverb . The title track must be catchy something that keeps twisting on the tongue of the listener .It is important to get the sound of the era right especially if the look is retro.

Set’s and Costumes : Try and have one person do the set design and the Costume design as it will be more coordinated , Art is a very important department as it gives a look and feel to the films , it gives the film a character . It helps you establish era , time , location and backdrop of the story . It tells us the setting of our story . In our web-series we have decided to go for a retro look . My story took place in 1998 and the costumes will represent that era and time , so will be the sets and the backdrop.

So far so good in the next post I will talk ab out the benefits of making a web-series and why it is the best time to make one and get creative recognition and earn some extra money that way . Till then keep reading my blog www.tikkustravelthon.in.

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