Are you filming in 360/VR for the first time? The principles are a little different to traditional filming, but never fear as we have compiled the ultimate guide to channelling your inner Kubrick and making some cinematic magic.
If you are using a GoPro Max, check out this short video on the basics to get ready and shoot:
Important: Please make sure that the camera is in 360 mode before you start filming. This is crucial to the project, we won’t be able to accept any footage not in a 360 format.
To check you are filming in 360, make sure this screen is showing on the camera before you start filming:
And NOT this screen:
Secondly, think about what you want to show us in 360/VR video! This form of video works best when it’s emotionally engaging, so what moves you, and how would you bring your fears to life?
Remember the golden ‘show, not tell’ rule.
Please note: Take both GoPro memory cards with you on location. They fill up quickly so it is important to make sure you have enough storage as possible
It is important to consider the camera placement and its surroundings. 360 video thrives at the centre of the action and wide spaces. Be aware that you want to give the audience options of viewing space, so don’t put the camera in the corner where 180 degrees of the video is just walls.
Important: You must direct the start of the action in front of the camera face without the screen.
For example, if you are talking to the camera, speak to the side of the camera which looks like this…
Don’t choose to film at night or in dark locations. 360 video is hard to light as the entire area needs to be exposed to light to avoid areas that are too dark to view that risks bringing the audience out of the experience.
Traditionally, some people experience motion sickness with VR and 360 videos. However, the GoPro 360 Max camera has impressive built-in stabilization, which allows for more movement. See in the video below two examples of this.
We encourage you to play with movement and show us the environment. However, please keep in mind that any movement should be done slowly and without sudden movement.
This allows the audience to settle into the scene and allow them to explore their surroundings without feeling motion sick.
Since the audience can view everything, make sure that the camera’s surroundings are visually interesting. Be aware that in 360/VR video, objects and people may seem further away than they appear, so if you are highlighting a person’s emotion or an object, make sure it can be read on camera.
However, be careful of the stitch line where the camera lenses meet up. Sometimes this can distort the footage and make it unusable. The stitch line is usually on the side of the camera, so always make sure your main action is happening in the centre of the front and back cameras.
Sometimes 360 videos are edited too quickly for the audience to settle into the scene. Let the camera sit and absorb the action and its surroundings so that the editor has more to work with and the audience has time to ground themselves and gather the emotion.
One of the best things to do when you receive a 360/VR camera is to just experiment with it. Do what feels right to you and try things out. There is never any harm in trying.
Good sound recording is vital in making immersive 360/VR video. The in-built microphones on the Go Pro Max are not ideal to be the primary audio recorder. Instead we have supplied a Zoom H1 recorder.
To use, first take the lapel mic and plug it into the socket labelled ‘LINE IN’ on the right hand side of the recorder as pictured. (NOTE:The Lapel Microphone must have have the adapter cable with the 90 degree plug fitted, or it will not work)
Now switch on the Zoom H1 by sliding the HOLD switch towards the bottom of the audio recorder as shown until the screen lights up.
Clip the lapel microphone onto your clothing about 10-15cm distance from your chin.
Finally make sure the wheel at the top of the Audio Recorder has the number 6 at the top as shown in the picture below.
When the time comes to offload your footage to send to us/view, you will need to carefully remove the footage from the GoPro Max camera. There are two ways to do this. We will follow the basic version first.
1)The first step is to remove the SD card from the side of the camera where the battery is kept.
2) Place the SD card into your computer, locate the footage and copy it onto a safe place (like a hard drive) for storage.
The footage should appear on your computer like this.
3) To view the footage yourself, you need to download GoPro Player, which you can find here.
4) Export the footage from the Go Pro Player. Go File -> Export and use the settings below.
5) Upload the footage to Google Drive/DropBox and send it over to us. The link which will be provided to you at the start of the project and email firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com to confirm the footages’ delivery.
1) If you have a smartphone, download the GoPro Quik app from the App Store.
2) Make sure your GoPro Max is turned on and is on charge. Open the app and sign in using the login details provided to you by us.
3) When you get onto this screen, select ‘Set Up Auto Upload’.
5) Sign into your internet connection and leave the camera to upload the footage. Do not remove your camera from charge during this process.
4) Notify us at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com to confirm the footages’ upload process.
Note: If internet connection is weak, please let us know to organise alternative delivery of footage.
If you have any further questions about how to film yourself in 360/VR please contact firstname.lastname@example.org