Would I Be Willing To Undertake VR Commissions In The Future?

I am unsure whether I would be 100% willing to undertake VR commissions in the future. Only because I am not sure if it comes under photography or video/filming more?

To me a photographer takes images, still ones and could create photo films if they wanted. Yet I feel that VR is more of a video/footage style that a filter, director or videographer would create.

As the photography industry is adapting to be more technologically advanced .with VR, iPhones, cameras and editing software, photographers would want to adapt and change along with it. Therefore, people would commission a photographer who was up to date with the news tech and style of industry.

At the same time, some people like to stay ‘old school’ and traditional and would rather hire a photographer just for still image purposes.

I guess as a photographer, offering more of a range would give you more jobs/clients but I would want to focus on one style of capturing images, to develop and advance my skills in that one aspect. And I, as a photographer like to keep things old school with film and digital cameras.

I would be willing to learn about VR and how to create the content so I could work for a client who really wanted me to create VR content, but it wouldn’t be my first choice of media to promote my photography work with.

VR & Photography- Part Two

Some extra thought continuing on from the previous post about VR and photography…

  • VR and photography could work really well together when it comes to imagery for products, interior design and location/holiday booking imagery.

 

  • VR could be used so people can view the 360 view of a certain product they’d be interesting in buying.

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  • Interior design/home photographers could use VR content for estate agent websites… so if people are viewing images of a house online, they actually get to see what the house is like through VR footage. This would benefit people if they couldn’t make it to the house to view it on a certain day etc, they could quickly go online, select a house and have a full house tour through VR footage.

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  • It could even become part of booking a holiday online. Rather than looking at still images on a holiday booking website, viewers could get a full view/tour of the apartment, villa, hotel or holiday park they are looking at. They would get to see all aspects of the rooms, facilities and surroundings. Something like this could really benefit holiday companies as most websites these days forge the images they use to make somewhere look like they’re not.

 

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Will photographers be required to generate VR footage in the near future?

I think that photographers could be required or commissioned to create VR footage in the future as the modern tech world and creative industries are vastly evolving along side each other. With the photography world turning more mobile, and the VR world turning more complex and affordable, I think that the two could end up crossing paths at some point in the near future, if it hasn’t already.

Im not too sure how VR video footage would work with/for photographers but I think that VR 360 photography could become a bigger thing. If photographers offer 360 images as well as regular still images, it could boost their potential with more clients, as VR would be more upcoming and give people a niche to offer to clients.

360 images would work really well for landscape, event and product photographers. Being able to photograph someones wedding for example and sending them over 360 VR images of their big day, the venue, the family portraits etc would be amazing. It would be stunning to view landscape photography as a 360 degree image or VR footage, as you would be able to place yourself in that location, turning every image into an experience through seeing. For product photography it could work really well in terms of getting a closer look at products you would potentially be interested in buying.

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360 and VR footage could work for fashion photographers and designers. For example, if someone is releasing a new collection, you could view the new fashion collection through 360. You could almost be in the middle of a circle of models, who would be wearing the new clothes. And where you can view the models in 360, you would be able to turn around in the middle of that circle, getting a close look at the outfits, colours, materials and fitting. I think that would be quite cool! It would be cool for fashion students for example when they showcase their final collections. I think it would be really cool as well to view fashion and art installations through 360 VR images and video footage.

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I am still unsure of how well it would work for photographers though. I think VR footage could work better for people who are filmers, videographers, directors etc. And the 360 VR images would be something more for photographers. If photographers were to generate VR footage, they would be turning into filmers rather than photographers, and it would be a completely different take on their career.

As I previously mentioned, with the photography industry and modern tech world evolving rapidly together, they will definitely cross paths in the future, and are starting to already. It is exciting but daunting to see what the future of the photography industry holds.

 

 

Interview 3- VR User

The next and last interview I did was with a friend who is a photographer, I felt he would be good to ask questions as he has worked in the industry for a few years and could see it from a similar point of view to me, also being a photographer.

What VR set do you use?
The only VR set I have used is the HTC Vive

 


What do you use it for?
I used it to play games and as an example of technological advances

 


How does it make you feel? Does it change your experiences in any way?
It’s definitely different to any other media… I don’t think personally it would replace a conventional method of gaming for me for a long while

 


Do you think VR should continue to improve and become a bigger part of modern technology?
What ever I think about VR it’ll continue to become more prominent as the technology gets better

 


Do you think VR footage could be crucial to photographers in the next few years?
I don’t think it’ll have any impact outside maybe a virtual photo gallery, I think photography and VR are completely different ball parks

 


If you were in the creative industry, would you be willing to undertake commissions that require you to generate VR? If yes, why?
I think it would be fun to generate VR content, if thats what people are willing to buy, there there could be good money in it

 


If you were to hire a photographer for an important event such as a wedding, or showcasing your new fashion collection, would you want the photographer to generate VR footage of the important day as well as images?…

For example, if I was to be photographing your wedding, or new fashion collection, would you want to view images through 360 degrees VR and create an experience rather than a still photograph? Or have both?

You would definitely need both… so you could accommodate a lot of different clients, not everyone can use VR because of epilepsy and motion sickness… and a lot of older people may not understand the technology and would want a more traditional preview… at this moment in time, it is still a novelty… but may well could become the standard in the next 10-20 years.

Interview 2- VR User

The second interview I carried out was with a family friend called Mapheon.

What VR set do you use?
Samsung VR2


What do you use it for?
I use it for watching movies on long journeys, escaping for an hour post work and meditation.


How does it make you feel? Does it change your experiences in any way?
The immersive nature of the headset allows me to truly forget my surroundings and dive into what ever experience it is. Whether it be watching a movie, playing a game or sitting on a beach in Cuba in the comfort of my own bed. I feel like I can relax and enjoy more with the headset than a standard monitor.


Do you think VR should continue to improve and become a bigger part of modern technology?
YES YES YES! But, like any new technology, it takes time for the masses to truly gain benefits from it. Once the tech becomes cheaper and the top headsets become widely accessible, I hope VR will take off. Inclusion of VR into modern day life would improve cinematic experiences, presentations and even have a place in education.


Do you think VR footage could be crucial to photographers in the next few years?
I’m not too sure on this one, I haven’t really looked at it from that point of view.


If you were to hire a photographer for an important event such as a wedding, would you want the photographer to generate VR footage of the important day as well as images?… For example, if I was to be photographing your wedding, would you want to view large family photos and clips of the day through VR rather than a still photograph? Or have both?
No, only because I personally wouldn’t want that. However, I can see a market for it. I would want to incorporate a VR of the venue maybe. But as I am old school with the moments of the day, I’d want still images.


Extra Comments:
I am a VR fan boy though and my biggest gripe is how at the moment it is still kind of in that transition stage from gimmick to functional tech. I have tested a few of the high end ones and the different between those and adorable is ridiculous.

Interview 1- VR User

The first interview I conducted was a friend’s husband named Rowan.

What VR set do you use?
I use Playstation VR


What do you use it for?
I use it for games and entertainment experiences like Youtube, 3D Blu-rays, VR Cinema and as a second screen for non- VR games.


How does using it make you feel? Does it change your experiences in any way?
VR has made me feel many different ways- happy, scared, relaxed, excited and occasionally nauseous! VR has the power to immerse you in an experience in a way that amplifies these feelings to a very high level. The way it changes an experience is very difficult to describe, it really only makes sense when you put the headset on.


Do you think VR should continue to improve and become a bigger part of modern technology?
I am supremely confident that as the tech improves, the price comes down and the barriers to entry are removed that VR will become a massive part of technology. It is already being used in other areas aside from entertainment (medicine/science, education etc). I think gaming is just the tip of the iceberg for what people will use VR for in the future.

I believe it will be an amazing educational tool that will be standard in classrooms at some point (example, visiting ancient Egypt in a history lesson. Rather than just looking at books and documentaries, students will be able to walk around together IN Egypt with their teacher pointing things out to them).


Do you think VR footage could become crucial to photographers in the next few years?
I’m not sure in which ways it would/could be incorporated by photographers beyond the 360 type photos that are already prevalent but I am sure there are people much smarter than me (such as yourself!) who could find many interesting ways to incorporate it into their work.


If you were in the creative industry, would you be willing to undertake commissions that require you to generate VR? If yes, why?
I would yes, mainly based on the fact that I’m such a believer in the technology. I would also love to be able to be involved in something with so much potential at its roots/beginnings.


If you were to hire a photographer for an important event, such as a wedding, would you want the photographer to generate VR footage of the important day as well as images?… For example, if I was to be photographing your wedding, would you want to view large family portraits and images/clips of the day thorough VR rather than a still image? Or have both?
I guess that would depend on how much extra it was going to cost but yes, I would personally have loved that at our wedding. It would have changed my experience looking back on the memories of the big day!

VR Users- Interviews

To expand my research and broaden my knowledge on the VR world, I decided it would be a good idea to interview some people who have VR sets and use them regularly.

I think that asking them questions will give me a good sight into their opinions on the VR world, why they use VR, what experiences they get from it, and their opinions on the future creative industries and VR working along side each other.

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