We receive a ton of tips every day from independent creators, unaffiliated with any major motion picture studios, television networks, new media studios, or other well-funded online video entities. The Indie Spotlight is where we’ll write about and shout out to a select few of them and bring you up to speed on the great (and sometimes not-so-great) attention-grabbing series you probably haven’t heard about until now. Read previous installments here.
Instagram Video is a year old, but it still hosts very few quote-unquote web series. Sure, there are plenty of cool videos on there, and it’s a great place to share a clip with friends, but outside of a few entries, Instagram provides little in terms of serial content.
A group of NYU film graduates are trying to change that. Led by Aleks Arcabascio, Jeremy Boros, and Samuel Delmara, they have created Artistically Challenged, a new web series released through Instagram and composed of 32 super-short episodes.
Artistically Challenged follows Nick (played by Boros), a loser who experiences a sudden windfall when he takes credit for a piece of art hanging in his room. What follows is a fast-paced journey through the artistic world, with Nick caught up in the middle. New episodes will arrive each day in July until the entire series has been completed.
Each episode of Artistically Challenged is extremely short, but that shouldn’t mask the amount of work that has gone into the series. In an e-mail, Delmara noted that the production team included 25 volunteer crew members and a cast of more than 30 people. On the series’ website, blog posts note the entire creative process through which Artistically Challenged was created.
What has emerged from that busy scene is a web series where every second counts. Strong direction, carefully-crafted sound, and simple, effective acting allow the series’ creators to pack as much as possible into each second. Artistically Challenged moves as fast as possible without leaving the viewer behind. It’s a daring, experimental strategy, and in this case, it has paid off.
OTHER UNDER-THE-RADAR SERIES TO CHECK OUT
- Treepot Cliffhanger. This web series is a film version of exquisite corpse: It’s five episodes are each directed by a different person.
- Ian. A loser dictates his life and his actions by his favorite pop culture touchstones, to disastrous effect.
- Tough Love. Two roommates find their ground in Queens in this self-described “gay Broad City”.
- The British Invasion. This web series mocks Hollywood’s obsession with British actors.
Got a series you’d like to see featured in the Indie Spotlight? Be sure to contact us here. For best coverage, please include a full episode in your e-mail.
This edition of Indie Spotlight is sponsored by Tongal. Tongal is changing the way creative work gets done, by making it accessible to people everywhere. For brands, studios, and causes, Tongal’s innovative platform provides continuous access to a global network of creatives, offering fresh ideas and insights, and top filmmaking talent to bring them to life. Tongal’s collaborative, merit-driven process enables everyone to focus on the work they do best. The result is outstanding content delivered with great speed and efficiency. Tongal is based in Santa Monica, California.