At Christmas time, there are so many videos vying for our attention. From the latest department store tearjerker to the raft of festive e-cards in our inboxes, it can be easy to overlook important messages for good causes. With this in mind, Loco Director Dave Waldman used 360° filmmaking technology to cut through the clutter and create something a little bit different.

Read More

Loco is proud to present his short film, “Homeless at Christmas” which raises awareness and funds to support homeless people in our community through local charity, The House of St. Barnabas.

As well as directing, Dave wrote, edited and created the GFX/VFX for the film, always ensuring that the 360° device remained instrumental to communicating the film’s message.

As Dave explains, “First and foremost, you have to work out what you want to say. Then, you work out how to say it. 360° filmmaking is no exception. Unless the medium is integral to the message, it’s just a gimmick.

In this instance, the message behind the film is: don’t think of the homeless as ‘them’; think of them as ‘you’. We wanted to show how close we are all to homelessness.”

Dave teamed up with DOP Colm O’Rourke to capture the footage with Go-Pro’s latest 360° camera, the Omni. Although presented as a 360° film, it was shot as two 180° films. The two-film set-up allowed for the use of location lighting kits. More importantly, the juxtaposed day and night settings further emphasise how easy it is to go from ‘good times’ to ‘bad times’. As the film’s heroine crosses that line, it becomes easier for viewers to imagine themselves as homeless.

A public information film is nothing without a few facts to bolster the emotive message, and Dave’s use of motion graphic design introduces hard-hitting statistics in an engaging way. The text floats through the alleyway, and depending on where you orient your mobile device when you view the film, it feels like a ghostly presence drifting towards, through or around you. This technique, combined with the eerie soundtrack of jingling sleigh bells is reminiscent of film adaptations of the Christmas classic, Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.

By animating the text within the film, Dave gives the viewer the chance to interact and explore. This keeps the film fresh and the viewer engaged while still absorbing the message. If they get restless, they can have a look around.

Dave explains, “This allows us to make content significantly longer than conventional formats where the viewer is a passive observer. It is a great benefit of how VR technology can aid delivering narrative-based content.”

Now in the New Year, Dave is looking forward applying his growing knowledge and enthusiasm for 360° filmmaking and VR techniques to a range of creative treatments.

The film is available on Vimeo and YouTube. For the best viewing experience, watch on a mobile device. The film is also optimised for use with use a VR headset such as Google Cardboard. Further information about the best viewing settings are on the YouTube and Vimeo links.

To see more of Loco’s content creation projects, click here.
To find out more about Dave and to see further examples of his work, click here.
If you would like to find out more about Loco’s work for charitable causes, you can read about our films for
Remember a Charity and Cancer Research UK.

For more information about this video or if you would like to discuss a script or treatment, please email Loco or call us on +44 20 7304 4403.