Buy or Bespoke? 10 considerations for filming 360 content overseas

As we begin 2021 we are met with more restrictions on travel, socialising and working together, necessary due to the global pandemic. For a producer needing to shoot that scene of a crowded Oxford Street in London with maskless people, a temple in Bangkok or a 360 scenic in The Alps, this all might seem impossible at the moment but let us help you rethink accessing high-quality, advertising-grade footage 360 video without having to take a COVID test.

To say that overseas travel is difficult at the moment is an understatement, particularly if you’re a producer thinking of taking a crew into another country to film a project. Additional pre-flight considerations and headaches now include:

Finding an insurer that will provide you production insurance for taking a crew overseas for a production.

Coordinating (and paying for) pre-flight COVID tests for everyone, timed to make scheduled flights that won’t wait for you or your crew.

What do you do if the tests don’t come through in time or if one or more of your crew tests negative?

Having to quarantine when you and your crew arrive at your destination for up to 14 days, depending on where you’ve come from or where you’ve just arrived.

Covering the costs of the accommodation and subsistence for the crew during that quarantine.

Having to pay each of your crew for their time whilst isolating in quarantine. Crew Travel Days have now become Crew Quarantine Days.

Quarantining again when you return home and again having to cover the cost of the crew… as they can’t work (because of you).

If you do manage to get there, filming overseas on location also now means:

Navigating the various local COVID regulations and supervisors whilst there and ensuring their standards meet and adhere to those of your crew’s unions, organisations like the APA and of course your insurers.

Keeping your crew and those you are responsible for safe until you get them all home again. Admittedly this is always the case for any producer but the additional stress induced.

If filming in public places chances are everyone will be wearing a mask which will put a massive date stamp on anything you shoot. This is a particularly difficult problem for anyone filming in 360 and in public spaces. Anecdotally we recently had someone come to us asking for help to remove a total of 140 face masks from the faces of passers-by on two 360 travel documentaries filmed during the pandemic.

But fear not, we can help…

Blend Media has the largest and most comprehensive catalogue of premium 360VR video content in the world with over 36,000 minutes of licensable content available on Blend StockBlend Stock. We’re particularly strong in Travel, Epic Scenery & Nature, Wildlife, Underwater, Aerials and Classical Music with new content coming in daily from our global network of 360 Producers.

This of course means that if you can’t travel to film the locations you need yourself, the chances are Blend Stock will have the shots. We’ve thrown lifelines to several clients recently, all of whom needed to film 360 content bespoke for their projects but were unable to do so with the travel restrictions and complications global pandemics tend to create. Blend provided large volumes of 360 content from Washington DC, New York, Paris, Rome, London, Tel Aviv, Budapest, Moscow, Hong Kong, Bali, The Algarve and New Delhi and our customers were able to complete and deliver their projects and products to their clients. We’re currently supplying more content from Marrakesh, Istanbul, Dubai and Los Angeles – not a facemask in sight!

For those of you that absolutely need to shoot something specific or bespoke overseas, Blend Market,Blend Market, our new marketplace platform that came out of Beta in October 2020 is another lifeline we can offer. Blend Market is solely dedicated to connecting customers wanting to create immersive experiences or content with a global network of the best talent in the immersive space. 

With almost 1,000 creators (and growing daily) available for hire covering 121 different immersive skills, with almost 350 of those are experienced 360 Producers. If you need something filmed in a specific location all you need to do is post your brief on Blend Market and local creators will be in touch to bid on your project. Recently 360 creators on Blend Market have serviced production projects in Shanghai, London and France through the platform.

Finally we also provide a managed service, so if you need specific 360 content created in a certain location but need someone to oversee the production process for you, the team at Blend Media will be happy to help.

If you would like to discuss the licensing or production of 360 content for your next project please feel free to contact