Written by Hannah Pronesti.
These days the average traveller comes home with a smartphone full of photos, but Ben Blennerhassett is not your average traveller. After spending three and a half months exploring the world, the Bendigo based creative combined all of the footage he had captured and produced Point of View, a video of his adventure that makes even the least well-travelled person nostalgic over a trip they’ve never had.
Primarily filmed in first person perspective, Point of View begins with an excerpt from an Alan Watts seminar, in which the British philosopher speaks about desire for adventure, and the freedom and experience that comes with it. It is a profound opening and an immediate sign that Ben is no amateur when it comes to filmmaking.
Point of View is a stunning compilation of vast landscapes and sweeping views, captured as Ben travelled across Iceland, Croatia, Canada and everywhere in between. More intimate moments are also featured, and one can’t help but feel it could be themself clinking glasses with Ben’s mates. You cannot help but to be overcome with the complete joy he has captured, and to be left in awe of the natural wonders of the world, as seen through his camera lense.
Since posting Point of View on Vimeo Ben has had over 20,000 views – not bad for a personal project made solely to remember his trip. His creativity extends further than videography, he is also a talented photographer and graphic designer by trade, but prefers to forge his own path calling himself a ‘creative freelancer’ and working under the moniker ‘Blenner Creative’. With his distinct ability to evoke feeling and emotion in his audience and allowing them to live vicariously through his videos, I see big things on the horizon for Ben Blennerhassett, but that’s just my Point of View.
Videography is not a typical career path – as a child, what did you want to be when you grew up and where did your love of videography begin?
I always wanted to do creative things, so I studied Graphic Design and graduated last year. I love graphic design, and I’m still doing some design work as a Freelancer, but most of my work is video or photography based.
To be honest, my love for videography probably came from video games. I used to record gameplay of myself and my friends playing and make short videos for YouTube. This began when I first started getting into photography. It was from here I wanted to get a new DSLR camera with video capabilities because I really found myself enjoying the video editing processes. The Canon 7D (One of the first DSLR’s video HD video) had just come out and being in year 11 I saved all my money to buy one. The first video I shot with the camera was a project for my year 11 media class. It was a music video for one of my favourite bands, Sigur Ros. The video actually ended up winning a short film festival.
Is videography your fulltime job now? What did you do before pursuing this?
My fulltime job is creative freelancing, which I’ve been doing this since my second year of Uni. I use that term ‘creative freelancer’ because I haven’t decided really exactly what it is I want to do, whether it’s design, photography, or videography. I love too many creative things.
What do you personally like about videos?
The thing I like about video over other creative mediums is how all the different aspects can come together in one to create overwhelming feeling. I think it’s the most powerful way to convey a message when done well.
Does the desire to capture particular footage influence your travel decisions?
I didn’t travel specifically to capture video and take photos, but it’s something I always wanted to do and to be honest I take a camera with me everywhere I go. The video wasn’t planned, it’s really just a mash-up of all my favourite footage from my 3 and a half months away. Although landscapes/weather/ culture did have a big influence on where I wanted to go as I saw better photo opportunities in some places over others.
How would you describe Point of View?
I would describe Point of View as a video that hopefully inspires people to get out there and see things, do things, travel.
Speaking of travelling, where would you most like to go next?
My next trip is potentially to the States early next year, although I’m looking into Egypt for a few weeks as it’s a place I’ve always wanted to go since I was young.
You’re a very versatile videographer in that you shoot landscapes, as well as weddings and other scenes. What is your favourite thing to shoot and why?
Weddings are great because they have a lot of emotional feelings attached to them, but this isn’t something I want to do for too much longer. It’s been a good creative way for me to make money for the last year and a half. The wedding season in 2013 basically funded my whole trip.
What do you see happening for you in the future?
I think eventually I’d love to work in a production studio and work on short films – but a lot can change in a few years. I don’t know where I see myself going exactly, as long as I’m living creatively and making enough money to get by, I’ll be happy.