Being homeless – Auckland’s 360 perspective

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Auckland City Mission – with DDB and Track NZ – yesterday debuted The Harsh Reality, a powerful immersive, 360-degree video experience that drops the viewer into a series of confronting vignettes, shot from the perspective of one of Auckland’s homeless.

The video, which was created to kick-start Auckland City Mission’s 2016 Winter Appeal, highlights the terrible conditions facing Auckland’s homeless – and also forces the viewer to see through the eyes of a rough sleeper — driving home that these are real people, just like anyone else.

The 360-degree experience, produced by Track and DDB, is currently hosted online by NZME on the New Zealand Herald website — a first for the publisher.

Auckland City Missioner Chris Farrelly says this new method of storytelling perfectly suits the brief of encouraging Aucklanders to connect with the plight of their less-fortunate neighbours.

“When we asked Track to help us with our Winter Appeal, and they responded with this innovative idea of bringing to life the stories of our city’s rough sleepers we thought, ‘We absolutely need to do this’,” Farrelly said.

“They’ve got a very talented team who were able to provide the necessary support on what was a very technical project, and a story that needed to be told with equal amounts of creativity and compassion.”

Track CD Jeff Harris said the project was a perfect case where the story and the objective dictated the technology and the channel, rather than using technology for its own sake.

“We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to use the latest technology to tell this important story, in a way that it hasn’t been told before,” he said.

“There’s a lot of media coverage at the moment about the plight of our city’s homeless and I’m sure people are concerned on an intellectual level, but to really immerse Aucklanders in this issue, on a visceral level that’s impossible to ignore, we felt we needed to create a compelling experience that puts the viewer in their shoes.

“Working with DDB to deliver a 360 video was the perfect solution.

Auckland City Mission’s Winter Appeal runs from 1 July to 16 August, and will also be supported by a donation drive through outdoor, press advertising and online.


Track NZ

Group Business Director: Sarndra Bell
Creative Director: Jeff Harris
Art Director: Michael Tomich
Copywriter: Caroline Phillips
Account Manager: Harriet Arbuckle


Chief Creative Officer: Damon Stapleton
Executive Creative Director: Shane Bradnick
Digital Creative Director: Haydn Kerr
Producer: Alva Casey
Director & Editor: Steve Gulik
Editor: Mark Trethewey
Audio: Dan
Head of Digital Design: Jason Vertongen


General Manager – Group Content Marketing: Dallas Gurney
Project Manager: Gina Waikari
Writer: Ewan McDonald

Staples Productions

VR DOP: Edward Bellamy
VR Tech: Aliesha Staples
VR Assistant: Chris Lucas
VR DIT: Stephanie Watson
Behind the Scenes Cameraman: Jason Delaveau

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