Webisodes capture Capital's creative life

TALIA CARLISLE
Last updated 05:00 29/03/2014
capital webisodes

Female power: The creative women behind Capital Culture, from left, Virginia O'Connor, Isobelle Walton, Martine Harding and Miriam O'Connor.

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The Wellingtonian

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Four childhood friends have self-funded a mockumentary series based on creative types living in Wellington.

Each plays a different character in the web series, Capital Culture, on YouTube.

The show stars Isobelle Walton, sisters Miriam and Virginia O'Connor, and Martine Harding.

Originally based in Mt Cook, the women developed the idea while living in Melbourne five years ago, Walton said.

Intrigued by the characters around them, each carried a notebook to document sayings and surroundings, which were then written into a script.

"We all worked in different cafes and bars, and being on the tram, you'd overhear funny stuff," Walton said.

"Our neighbours were a huge inspiration. They had a rabbit that they took for a walk on a lead, parties in the rain and silent parties."

Capital Culture follows fashion blogger Lennon, who works part-time in a vintage clothing store in Cuba St, bartender and "mixologist" Imogen, aspiring DJ/singer/songwriter Willoughby, who works in a cafe, and film-maker Frankie, a Toi Whakaari drama school dropout.

Walton said the show was inspired by programmes Summer Heights High, Super City, Girls and Portlandia, with influences from web series Dalston Superstars and Bondi Hipsters.

The concept was familiar on a global stage, but a first for New Zealand, she said.

It had been a learning experience for the friends, Walton said.

"None of us have written anything before. Martine is a musician in the band Arma Del Amor and Gin has been acting since she was little. [Miriam and I] were maybe in some school plays when we were 12."

Five years after they got their idea, the first four episodes have been released on YouTube.

The series premiered at Wellington hairdressers Willis York this month.

Walton said the show was created for their own benefit, but receiving positive feedback was a great bonus.

"A lot of it is improvisation," she said.

"We wrote a huge script and then came to film and just went with it."

The project was funded by $5000 raised through crowd-funding website Pledge Me.

Walton said the series would not have been made without the help of businesses and friends, who donated time, skills, props, costumes and venues.

Between 12 and 16 episodes were filmed over two weekends in the summer.

Episodes will be released sporadically on YouTube.

The show has been filmed and edited by Finn O'Connor of Couch Kumaras.

A computer science student at Victoria University, O'Connor first made films as a 10-year-old.

"I started making [films] for fun with my mates and entered some competitions and did well. It sort of developed from there," he said.

O'Connor said he enjoyed the challenge and creative freedom involved in putting together the Capital Culture series with the women.

"They're all very good writers and they've all got something very enigmatic about their acting and their sense of humour, which gives it variety and keeps it interesting." You can watch the first four episodes of Capital Culture at youtube.com/capitalculturewgtn or visit facebook.com/capitalculturewgtn.

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- The Wellingtonian

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