• 02.28.12

A Dog’s-Eye View Of Music Video Directing

Watch an inexhaustible dog trot through a busy day with a camera strapped to his back in electro artist Johnny Neon’s “Hearts” video.

A Dog’s-Eye View Of Music Video Directing

He may have had a little help from a human friend, but this dog has shot at least one more music video than I have, and definitely has more stamina. What are you trying to prove, mutt?


The video in question is electro musician Johnny Neon‘s “Hearts,” and all Neon had to do to get it made was leave town and get a dogsitter. It’s just dumb luck that the friend he lent his beagle to happened to be director Dave Meinert. Inspired by the dog’s boundless energy, Meinert decided to make a video, and he subcontracted filming duties for this assignment to the dog himself.

In order to get the shots straight from the dog’s point of view, Meinert put together a custom rig based around a GoPro camera. The video follows the high spirited dog’s adventures from running around inside of a house, to running around on various streets, and eventually taking a (running-centered) trip to the beach.

“My friend asked me to look after his dog for the weekend” says Meinert, a commercials director and filmmaker. “I was researching putting a camera on the edge of space so I had a small GoPro camera with me for the weekend (I have recently done this for another video which got released this week too. The end sequence is the camera going up 78,000 feet.) I was walking the dog and the idea came to me. At the same time, another close friend of mine asked me to start thinking about concepts for a video for him. Everything just unfolded.”

Meinert says he was going to make a video just to prove to his friend that he did actually take the dog for a walk but the reactions from onlookers made him take another look.

“I found an old soccer shin guard in my garage and cut it in half and pop-riveted it to a dog’s H-harness,” says Meinert. “Then I secured the camera on to that by counter-sinking screws into the GoPro base plate and securing them to the shin guard. For the dog lovers out there, know that Lemon absolutely loved it. She got excited whenever she saw the harness. Young dogs like the security of something wrapped around them like this in the same way babies liked to be swaddled in a blanket.

For dog-loving filmmakers who want to try this, Meinert warns that every dog is different. “A border collie would snap this rig in half. Its back moves and flexes whereas this cross-breed is far more rigid.”

Have a look at more of the director’s work in action with the Coca-Cola ad below.


About the author

Joe Berkowitz is a writer and staff editor at Fast Company. His next book, Away with Words, is available June 13th from Harper Perennial.