Jérôme Lozano
April 2024

I’ve decided to write an overview of what I’ve learned after three years of making virtual reality video content. I just want to share my personal experience, maybe that’ll be useful for people wanting to get started!

Dexter Hercules : Pearl Booth at The Uk Drum Show 2023. Photo: Joby Catto

First, I talk about the challenges and benefits of 180° stereoscopic VR video capture versus 360° Monoscopic, and the importance of the 3D effect for viewer immersion.
Next, I detail the evolution of my equipment from entry-level cameras to professional configurations, highlighting the technical challenges and advantages encountered.
Then I share my experience working with different clients, exploring unique challenges and opportunities for collaboration. I explore the challenges and possibilities of video editing in virtual reality, composition and camera movement.
Finally, I highlight various artists in the VR community , emphasizing the importance of exchanging and sharing knowledge.

SINTIPON “V TANTSE” received 2 awards in “Best VR video” Category. Photo: Jacek Wesolowski

The immersion created by the format that enveloped us and the stereoscopy, the sensation of being truly integrated into the video itself…As a video enthusiast since adolescence, how could I not succumb to the entrancing charm of this technology?

in 2020, I was looking for an activity to complement my job as an editor, and the virtual reality sector seemed attractive to me. Indeed, I discerned a renewal in the visual experience itself. Virtual reality is redefining the perception of video through unprecedented immersive qualities. However, this evolution requires us to move away from the conventions of traditional (so-called “2D”) videos and relearn the art of capture. As a lover of images, I was immediately enthusiastic about this.

VR video is a fascinating niche, populated by a wide variety of talented people. I’ve met technicians with cutting-edge expertise, as well as creative people focused on innovation. Within this healthy community, mutual aid and the exchange of ideas are the order of the day.

What’s more, I found the collaborative process stimulating. From shooting to post-production, workflows remain unstable. After many exchanges with other creators, I’ve found that everyone develops their own methodology.

So, I decided to take time to experiment with this technology. And I don’t regret it for a second!

PLAINRIDE “Ritual”. Photo: Jacek Wesolowski

I started with monoscopic 360° capture using an Insta X One 2 camera. This method creates total immersion without stereoscopic effect, totally encompassing you from head to toe, giving viewers the freedom to construct their own experience by moving their heads and exploring the space. Each experience is therefore unique. I think giving people the keys to build their own experience is really great. However, viewers often remain relatively passive, as if still unconsciously limited by the conventions of 2D video. What’s more, capturing at 360° presents significant technical constraints, forcing us to make the whole environment visually interesting.

BLIND DELON “Crève” was shot in 360° monoscopic, with an Insta X One 2. Photo: Jacek Wesolowski

An alternative is to use a narrower angle of 180° in stereoscopic 3D, to help focus the eye on the elements in question. The 3D effect gives a striking impression of realism. In the end, the viewer also enjoys a more frontal experience (closer to 2D video). The 3D effect plays a key role in this experience, enabling us to see things as they really are, with contours, relief, fullness and volume. Although this technology is familiar from traditional cinema, it takes on a whole new dimension when combined with a VR headset.


The Insta 360 EVO was an accessible first camera. Without the need for previous experience as a cameraman, it has automatic settings that quickly produce images of acceptable quality (at least in the learning phase of VR).

Automatic stitching, 5K for comfortable post-production and average rendering, and an attractive “point and shoot” feature: all these assets enabled me to do a first project where I learned a lot without having to empty my pockets. I still love this camera, which I often take on vacation to create immersive memories. However, its limitations in terms of low-light management soon became uncomfortable.

The real revolution came with the Canon R5C configuration and the fisheye lens optimized for 180° 3D VR.

MÄNGELEXEMPLAR “hej hej hej!” was shot in VR 180° 3D with the Insta 360 EVO

Although this professional configuration represented a dilemma for me, especially in terms of price (affordable but relatively expensive), it finally proved its worth thanks to its image quality and versatility, even enabling me to shoot great 2D images and do occasional photography.

The ability to shoot 8K 60 fps, with the right lighting, offers a rendering that I feel is very close to reality. 8K is a very important format at the moment, as it enables local broadcasting on high quality VR headset, and is suitable for VR broadcasting platforms. The 60 fps frame rate allows very fluid movements (you can feel the difference with the 30 fps of the EVO, for example).

Behind The Scene IRONY OF FATE “Roll the Dice” Photo: Catalina

But, the technical complexity of this configuration is frightening, both during shooting and post-production. A relatively unstable workflow, the use of the RAW format and its associated Clog3 difficult to use in post-production…

However, this experience enabled me to explore new working methods and benefit from the experience of others, even at the cost of a few technical challenges. I’d like to thank Hugh Hou 1000 times over, with whom I became a collaborator, and had the chance to learn a lot about this camera!

With my setup Canon R5C + Dual Fisheye Lens Photo: Stanley Markes

Focal points, shot values, editing rhythm… everything has to be re-learned.

To capture a scene, I always place myself in the eyes of the future viewer, using my own eyes to gauge the distance to the talent or object.

It’s tempting to favor close-up shots to highlight an element, but in my experience, this excessive proximity creates visual discomfort, causing the eyes to converge. Nobody wants to be only 5 centimeters from a musical instrument, for example. Opting for a reasonable distance from the subject, between 1.3 and 3 metres, is a wise choice.

Great care must be exercised when positioning the camera, using the environment itself as an essential element. In virtual reality, filming a scene has a more theatrical approach. Unlike more traditional films, which often seek to conceal non essential elements in the scene, every props and details are very important. What’s more, the choice of complex locations is of genuine stereoscopic interest. For example, a dense forest teeming with trees can offer far more visual appeal than simple empty fields.

In my videos, the camera is often positioned at a height of 1.8m on a tripod. This is because I imagine the viewer standing when watching a video, and getting closer to his or her potential height fosters a more intense immersion. However, lowering the camera can also be beneficial, as it creates a similar effect of highlighting talent, without resorting to a low angle. I sometimes place the camera low to the ground, the worms eyes view.

FACE THE DEMON / PEARL Photo: Jacek Wesolowski

Certain mistakes must be avoided at all costs, such as lopsidedness or an unlevelled horizon of the camera axis, which could confuse the viewer, giving the impression of tilting the head in a strange way. Dips and tilts can quickly lead to an odd feeling of nausea.

Camera movement is another important consideration. In stereoscopic 3D, it is essential to follow certain rules to avoid motion sickness. A great deal of attention must be paid to this problem if people are to avoid feeling sick, sometimes for several minutes. For example, it’s imperative never to perform movements too abruptly. Vertical and horizontal movements should be avoided, and the only viable option is to move forward or backward very slowly using a gimbal or slider. Once mastered, movement can become a powerful tool in staging, and I’ve noticed that viewers appreciate this effect, giving them the impression of a deity-like ability to move through the imagery. Movement thus lends a dimension of power to an experience halfway between passive and active.


The main challenge remains the distribution of this content.

Of course, VR videos can be viewed on computers, tablets and smartphones, but there is no sense of immersion without a VR headset. It’s a technology that can only be fully experienced with a virtual reality headset

Cveti, vocalist of IRONY OF FATE, watching some previews and tests on the Oculus Quest 2

Since the video experience is semi-passive, is it of any interest to headset owners? For me, it’s a question of format and duration. An experience lasting no more than 5 minutes has a real impact in VR: heavy headphones, nausea, etc. Personally, I find that anything longer than that is too long.

But isn’t this precisely a new lease of life for video clips and even advertising, two formats that have lost some of their creative value since they were consumed on our phones and through social networks?

VR forces us to take the time to consume a video, and I believe that’s pretty great. I think that VR video is perhaps a long-term solution for creators to express themselves again without having to restrict their work to 15-second durations, in a vertical, anti-immersive format that runs counter to the very vision of a human being with two horizontally-positioned eyes.

SIXTURNSNINE with Vr cardboxes

Having been lucky enough to enter the world of advertising at the age of 20 in a fantastic company (WIZZ) with a catalog of super-creative directors, I hope that this technology will enable a revival in quality advertising by artistic virtue.I can only imagine Bruno Aveillan or Reynald Grasset doing something with this technology… that would be fantastic.

The headsets are relatively expensive, from 500 euros for the Oculus Quest 3 to 4000 euros for Apple Vision Pro… a reasonable price is the Quest 2, which costs 200 euros. I think it’s essential that prices don’t exceed 100 euros so that more people can have this broadcasting tool in their homes. Despite technological advances, adoption of these devices remains limited due to their cost and the lack of a sufficiently attractive content offering.

Max and Steff discovering theirVR videos with a Meta Quest 2 (left) and a Pico (right)

As far as platform distribution is concerned, virtual reality video viewing is not yet fully optimized. Streaming platforms such as YouTube have limitations in terms of quality and compatibility with virtual reality, frustrating content creators.

This is a recurring problem in the video industry: despite your efforts to capture the best possible quality, spending hours calibrating your films, the end result is often viewed in mediocre quality on online platforms. This problem is exacerbated in virtual reality: people without headsets will give negative feedback on your work, especially if they view it in 480p on their smartphone. Youtube: For the past two years I’ve seen this platform increasingly shun VR. No more streaming availability on headsets, the maximum streaming is 4K… this limitation drives me crazy! Imagine the frustration of producing 8K content only to have it broadcast at only half its quality.

It’s extremely frustrating.

our ON STAGE series playlist

As for DeoVR, I can’t really share my experience on this platform because I let my sidekick Björn Sondermann manage our videos on this platform. I have the impression that they have some good ideas, but I haven’t really found my way around.

How do you approach new customers with this ever-changing niche technology when it’s not a basic promotional tool and can only be seen by a limited percentage of people with a vr headset? I’ve been lucky enough to be accompanied by partners in reaching out to different groups of musicians and customers, and this collaboration has resulted in some rewarding projects.

SINTIPON ” V TANTSE” Photo: Jacek Wesolowski

The support of certain establishments, such as the Ratinger Hof in Düsseldorf, was essential to the realization of our projects. Thanks to my collaborator Björn Sondermann, I was able to convince music bands to integrate our ON STAGE concept and work with the PEARL brand to promote one of their flagship products. All these partnerships have resulted in interesting projects and passionate collaborations. In view of the risk of this type of project flopping, especially given the very purpose of a video clip, which has become a purely promotional tool, I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has taken part in my projects.

With Pearl at The Uk Drum Show in Liverpool UK

Many people argue that “editing kills immersion”, or that “changing perspective in VR breaks the sensation of being projected into a vision of reality“.

In my opinion, editing opens up a vast range of artistic options in the field of virtual reality videos. For our ON STAGE series, we’ve defined our own rules after experimenting with various editing principles. Here’s what we’ve come up with: we opt for highlighting the most immersive shots, those that literally plunge us into the musician’s eyes, keeping them for a significant length of time, often between 10 and 20 seconds.

This approach allows the audience to fully immerse themselves in the details of the scene, moving their heads to observe each element. To have time to scrutinize the scene. On the other hand, we’ve found that by placing the central talent or object of the scene in the center of the image, and at a certain distance, we can cut the sequence more dynamically, linking shots more quickly.

THE VIOLENT YOUTH “Prah” Photo: Jacek Wesolowski

This gives a rhythm closer to that of a two-dimensional video and densifies the experience, especially when music is involved. I try to maintain an editing style that follows the different phases of the music, making it easier for the unconscious mind to accept changes of shot more serenely.

Finally, I’m careful and cautious about radical changes in shot values, so that the eyes don’t have to adjust abruptly between a close-up and a wide shot, which could disrupt the visual experience in an unpleasant way.

Anaglyph frame from ROCKNGROLL Music Video

Here’s my workflow I shoot the images on two cards that record the rushes in parallel in 8K (known as “full”) and another in 2K (the “offline” proxies).

At the same time as preparing the edit, I transcode the native rushes (.crm unstitched) into 422 HQ stitched with EOS VR UTILITY. This software enables automatic stitching, which is very practical. However, if you want to be sure of getting good 3D, I suggest you use a much more complete solution that requires real know-how: MISTIKA VR.

Then I work on Adobe Premiere with the proxies (renamed exactly like the full rushes they are associated with)It’s a relatively uncomfortable offline editing method (I have to edit with my vision in fisheye) but it allows me to move on quite quickly to the first render.

Grading in Da Vinci Resolve

With the help of an EDL, I conform my edit on DAVINCI RESOLVE in 8K, use a denoise plug (the raw is unfortunately very noisy), calibrate and export three types of render: H264 6K 60mb (handy for fast, latency-free viewing with SKYBOX on Oculus Quest 2); H264 8K 100mb (for running on a Quest 3 and a first option for uploading to any platform); and PRORES 422HQ 8K: my master for archival.

With Björn Sondermann at PEARL Booth. Photo: Joby Catto

I’d like to mention some of the people I’ve had the chance to talk to. I highly recommend that you visit their platforms to discover their work.

Björn Sondermann is my main collaborator, with whom I’ve been working on all my projects for the past two years. Both living in neighboring cities in Germany, and sharing a passion for virtual reality and music, we decided to join forces to move forward more prolifically with our projects. Björn is a very human person, extremely sympathetic, always curious about technological advances and who learns from others.https://www.linkedin.com/connect-services/?session_redirect=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.linkedin.com%2Fin%2Fbj%25C3%25B6rn-sondermann-b6b05692%2F%3ForiginalSubdomain%3Dde

It’s impossible not to mention Hugh Hou, with whom I’ve learned so much. His ability to simplify and “pop” the complexity of virtual reality through his tutorials has greatly helped many people get started in this field and overcome the obstacles.https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCeEqIv7lVwOOLnwxuuhQFuQ

I’ve been lucky enough to work with the talented Joby Catto as a camera assistant. Joby is extremely technically proficient and has directed many immersive films. www.jobyvr.com

I’m also in contact with Daniel Vega, who creates a large number of videos for the DeoVr platform. We share a similar passion for our projects, motivated by our love for this field. https://www.linkedin.com/in/daniel-vega-768662265?originalSubdomain=cl

Alex Baker’s work is also very interesting. She has written a fascinating article on virtual reality.https://www.diyphotography.net/ Forrest Briggs of LifecastVR offers solutions for volumetric video.

We collaborated on a 6DOF project that won several awards at festivals dedicated to virtual reality. https://lifecastvr.com/

Dimitri Alips from Courant 3D in Angoulême discovered us and invited us to their festival, where we had the opportunity to present our work. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PkZ9IlJiQCw

Andrew Hazelden is a key reference in the field of virtual reality. https://gitlab.com/AndrewHazelden

I continue to learn from the experience of people like A4VR in Düsseldorf, VR WORLD in Cologne, Jörg at Bob Media, Marcel Heiss, contact at Canon. I hope I can continue to benefit from their knowledge and experience

COURANT 3D festival 2023

As for the future of virtual reality in the video industry, it remains uncertain. As far as I’m concerned, these projects have allowed me to develop and meet a creative need. However, the evolution of the sector will depend in part on the decisions of major technology companies such as Apple or Meta, as well as on changing consumer preferences. In conclusion, virtual reality offers considerable creative potential, but still faces technical and economic challenges. However, its wider adoption could open up new perspectives in the field of audiovisual creation.

I hope you found this article interesting! A huge thanks to Joby Catto who helped me to translate the text in English.

Jérôme Lozano

Virtual Reality Filmmaker 
+33 6 76 94 90 30

➜ Website: https://www.jeromelozano.com/

➜ YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@jeromelozano

➜ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jeromelozano 

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