Many Videomaker readers likely identify as part of this group — as video creators, we’ve dedicated ourselves to a craft made possible through technology. It makes sense that we would want to stay at the forefront of that technology. We keep up with the latest video production gear not only because we rely on it to produce better videos, but also because we love it — because seeing a piece of technology shatter all previous limits is a source of incredible excitement.
When Videomaker was founded more than thirty years ago, society was at an inflection point in the history of image making. The proliferation of video cameras signaled a turn towards the democratization of the moving image, and Videomaker emerged to support those early pioneers venturing into the new frontier of video production. With every new issue, we aim to continue providing that support to all the video producers who refuse to shy away from innovation.
With every new issue, we aim to continue providing that support to all the video producers who refuse to shy away from innovation.
All of which brings us to today, which may be labeled another important inflection point. Right now, in the video production world, 360 video is the bleeding edge. New cameras and camera systems for capturing spherical views emerge constantly, and stitching and editing tools are steadily becoming more advanced.
As the technology begins to mature, we’re also seeing more ambitious content being produced. News organizations have experimented with this new technology to immerse us in war zones or plant us in the press box at political events. Hollywood producers are looking for ways to tell stories after you’ve erased the borders of the frame, which traditionally worked to direct the audience's attention. Travel vloggers are using spherical video to transport us to faraway places that would otherwise be out of reach. Other adventurous folks are thinking up new uses for spherical video all the time, and there’s no way to predict what those uses will be. The technology is too new, the possibilities, too vast.
This is a thank you for those out there working to create the standards of tomorrow. If you’re one of the video producers creating 360-degree video content, you’re surely experiencing the growing pains of this new medium. Don’t despair. Though you face many challenges as you forge your path through the spherical video production process, you are clearing the way for new and better storytelling methods to emerge. Consider the current challenges opportunities — this is your chance to help create entirely new storytelling modes. Take advantage of the freedom to experiment and find your own style and technique. There will be no language for spherical storytelling unless there are people willing to develop it. Good luck to those immersed in the fray.
Matthew York is Videomaker's Publisher/Editor.