Put a Little Love in YOUR Heart -- my second test and lessons learned
My goal is to make at least 2 360 videos a month in 2018, and my second project was inspired by a 360 piece I'd seen previously that impressed me in its simplicity and was produced by CBS of the cast of Hamilton singing "Wait for It" on stage.
This style of 360 video is not so much about telling a story by making the viewer a voyeur in the scene as it is about putting the viewer into the center of the action. It's a simple technique and only needs a strong song and cast to pull it off. I used exactly the same technique and recorded the audio by synching the camera's reference track with external audio recorded by my Zoom H6 with a mid-side stereo mic along with a Zoom H2n recording ambisonic spatial audio. I haven't begun working with the spatial audio track yet, but it's in the can for when I being experimenting with the FB360 audio tools.
The most interesting thing for me about this video is that, because the singers come right up to the camera in the 2nd half, I get a visceral feeling that they are singing directly to me. That, plus the content of the song, which is an instruction to the listener, makes it feel very immersive to me. The song choice was very important and I was given a few options, finally choosing this one because it had a certain personal immediacy that I thought would work best. It was a good choice.
LESSONS LEARNED: 1) Have the lighting designer turn up all the lighting instruments. I was able to record this at a relatively low ISO200. 2) Instruct the performers that when they move into the camera at the end, they should pick a lens and stay in front of that lens as they get closer. Most of them followed this instruction, mitigating stitching artifacts on performers faces. 3) It's really important to make this visually interesting... the costumes go a long way towards that. (there's nothing like good props to help tell a story) 4) Because the viewer has to constantly spin around to see all the action, this is not what I'd call a successful piece on the storytelling level. It's more of an immersive experiment. (That said, you'll find a lot of this sort of "circling the camera" video on the internet because it's so obvious and easy to do.)