With more and more people willing to explore the unexplored parts of the world these days, a new digital channel TheVibe has come up to inspire avid travellers in experiencing the untouched destinations of the world. Through a web series, TheVibe showcases the journey of a traveller to the unexplored places, their real experiences and the discoveries they make during the trip.
The first season of the web series, produced by TheVibe, was "Way Back Home: A Himalayan Travelogue," which explored the never-seen-before parts of the Himalayas, while the second chapter of the web series is "Away From Home: Discovering The Andaman Islands." "Away From Home: Discovering The Andaman Islands" is hosted by Nayantara Jain, a marine conservationist.
In an exclusive interview with International Business Times, India, conducted through email, Rohan Thakur, the DOP of TheVibe, opened up about his association with TheVibe, their future travel destinations and more.
International Business Times: Can you tell us more about your association with TheVibe.
Rohan: Bharati and I are Director-DOP team. TheVibe is a new digital channel, which is making content such as ours accessible to the audiences. Our association with Shoelace Films, which was the producer of the series, goes back a couple of years when we were first commissioned to work on "Way Back Home."
IBT: What inspired you to work on this travelogue/series?
Rohan: "Way Back Home" was my (Rohan) journey through the Himalayas to rediscover my roots. For the second chapter, I wanted to explore places far, far away from my own home. And what could be more in contrast to the Himalayas, than the Andamans.
IBT: After Himalayas and Andamans, which other places do you intend to explore?
Rohan: We would like to explore South-East Asian countries, upper Middle-Eastern countries such as Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, the Scandinavian countries and Tibet.
IBT: How do you approach the host/traveller for a particular episode?
Rohan: For this season ("Away From Home: Discovering The Andaman Islands"), we wanted to find someone who had left their "home" and found a new "home" in a new place. Tara (Nayantara) fit the bill perfectly! She's been living in the Andamans for almost seven years now and knows almost everything about the Islands. So the "hosting" part of it was very organic.
IBT: What is the story behind the title "Mountains To Sea"? Why are the other episodes titled "Away From Home" and "Way Back Home"?
Rohan: "Way Back Home | A Himalayan Travelogue" was the first season of the series documenting my journey of self-discovery as I journeyed through the lower Indian Himalayas. "Way Back Home" in its second chapter was titled "Away From Home | Discovering The Andaman Islands" as it trails Nayantara who has left her "home" in Bangalore to find a new "home" in the Andamans. "Mountains to Sea" was the title of the transition episode describing the shift from the Himalayas to the Andamans.
IBT: How is it different from any other travel show, like Dia Mirza's show "Ganga The Soul Of India"? Do you explore art, culture and cuisine of that particular place on the web series?
Rohan: Our approach to making these travelogues is very open and organic. We do a concrete amount of R&D before we head out to shoot. Since a lot of filming is in uncontrolled environments, we shoot and try to capture it all — be it art, lifestyle, culture, food, adventure etc.
IBT: Do you think the show will boost tourism of that place. Who are your target audience?
Rohan: We definitely hope that the show encourages people to visit the islands but to do so in a responsible manner. We hope to inspire people of all ages and backgrounds to "travel" and not "tour."
IBT: Did you face any difficulty while shooting for the episodes?
Rohan: Well, we almost got eaten alive by a salt water crocodile! Almost everything in the Andamans is out to KILL YOU! Anything from the poisonous Stone Fish to an innocent coconut falling on your head to unidentified bites. But when you get past all the rashes and scars, you experience a raw and almost prehistoric beauty that is very rare to find today.
Also the Andamans are a highly protected area and for a good reason. There are indigenous tribes that are fighting to survive, and their lands and way of life have to be protected from modern civilisation. You are strictly not allowed to film or come in contact with these communities.
Also the flora and fauna in the forests and in the sea are so fragile and rare that extra precaution needs to be taken to ensure their survival. One has to respect the laws of the land and find ways to experience things without disturbing the natural balance.
IBT: Do u intend to make it into a TV show?
To watch the episodes of "Away From Home: Discovering The Andaman Islands," click here.