First-Person View of Journalist's Protest Coverage is Enthralling

A recently shared YouTube video by Australian photographer Dillon Mak puts viewers behind the lens as he navigates rowdy crowds, police barricades, and scores of other journalists. The point-of-view setup takes you right to the front lines of the Reclaim Australia protests and counter-protests that have been taking place across Australia.

There is something ever immersive about a first-person camera angle. Maybe it's from hours of playing Golden Eye and Doom, or the unshakable feeling of watching "The Blair Witch Project" for the first time? Regardless, the point-of-view camera is always a tense, transportive experience. It's something that Mak is able to do by blending the tension of the protests on the streets with black and white snaps of his final images throughout the video.

Copyright 2015 | Image by Dillon Mak

Mak said that he was inspired by documentaries that featured a similar shared visual perspective. He went on to say that he misses seeing the camera-mounted video.

Copyright 2015 | Image by Dillon Mak

“I will be continuing to shoot a P.O.V. video at nearby protest[s] I attend,” He said. “So, if photographers want to see more videos like this, all they need to do is subscribe to my YouTube channel.”

Street photographer and photojournalist, Mak, uses a simple tripod mount adapter for his GoPro Hero4 Silver. The GoPro is mounted on top of a Canon 70D with Sigma 18-35 f/1.8 Art attached, and an EF 24-105 F/4 L in the bag.

Dillon Mak's 70D and GoPro setup. Copyright 2015 | Image by Dillon Mak

While the Reclaim Australia protests are very politically and racial charged, Mak’s interests remain that of a pure documentarian. 

“The video and photos I shot aren’t supposed to particularly show one side as being better than the other,” he said. “I simply stayed around the areas that were the most likely to have dramatic scenes to photograph.”

Copyright 2015 | Image by Dillon Mak

Copyright 2015 | Image by Dillon Mak

Copyright 2015 | Image by Dillon Mak

Copyright 2015 | Image by Dillon Mak

Copyright 2015 | Image by Dillon Mak

Good thing too, because his setup and calm consistent approach to journalism is fascinating. Particularly when the video takes you along for the coverage.

You can view more of Mak’s photojournalism on his Flickr page, and his street photography here. You can also follow him on Instagram.

Adam Sparkes's picture

Adam is the Assistant Director of Photography at Central Michigan University. He has been pushing a button for a living since 2009 and for that entire time constantly finds himself correcting people who pronounce it "fur-tographer".

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Awesome photos!

People in Sydney protesting? Lols.

'Reclaim Australia' is the Australian equivalent of the KKK. I marched against them in Melbourne.