Sometimes you just need a voiceover

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Now and then a property really needs spoken words to convey it's splendor.  This particular parcel has more treasures than one could include in a 2-3min video, so the answer was obvious - use a voiceover to help paint the picture.  The client used his voice, which is good because I had a respiratory infection at the time of the voice recording/post production work. (Vog = volcanic's a real thing here, very impactful to the lungs)

Located in Maui's windward north shore rainforest/jungle, flying the drone here was quite a challenge.  Because this is the leeward side of Maui, the mornings usually kick off with a gentle rain shower.  Around 9am, the skies open up, and the clouds give way, but only because the Tradewinds kick up and blow them out.  So, it's either raining or windy, perfect for aerial work, right?? lol.

Add to the mix a need to fly up a waterfall, which came with problems of it's own.  Problem number 1:  If I launched the drone from down in the gulch, at the base of the waterfall, there was no GPS, and for some reason, regardless of flight mode, the silly drone wouldn't get above about 30ft AGL.  Tried all three flight modes (P4 - GPS, Atti, Sport) and to no avail.  So, my next option was to launch the drone from above the gulch, send it to the opening in the bamboo above the waterfall, and hike through the bamboo, back down into the gulch.  This required a VO, and also maintaining little peeps of the drone along the way...not the most awesome scenario, but fortunately in the wilderness so the only risk was to the drone itself.  Well...maybe a bamboo chute or two, but that stuff is super tough.  Once at the bottom of the waterfall, I was able to drop the drone down into the gulch, through swaying bamboo (because of the wind up top).  Down in the gulch, the waterfall itself created gusty breezes and odd wind patterns, and then there's the whole 'don't get the lens wet, but try to be close enough to see the wonder' part of flying waterfalls.

Another pucker moment was flying out over the ocean, and watching a red-tailed tropicbird make a few territorial fly-bys at the drone.  I dunno why, but sea birds and cattle egrets tend to give me hell!

The scene where the drone leads into the common mango tree grove was tricky as well.  All was going smoothly, but once I got right into the middle of those trees, GPS dropped, bird went into full Atti mode...with gusting wind.  Trying to get the drone back out without playing pinball was a chore to say the least, but it all worked out.

So there's the synopsis of the shoot.  There were many more challenges, too many to mention, but in the end, I'm happy with the final product, and most importantly, we all had a fun time working together to make it happen.  

Mahalo for viewing!



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On 7/23/2018 at 10:02 AM, Av8Chuck said:

flying anywhere near or on the ocean is challenging.  Fog, rain, wind, its all fun.

here's a video from our last whale research mission from two years ago.  I'm not sure if I included any shots from the same area...


Very nice, Chuck, thanks for sharing!  Didn't see any Haiku shots in there, but plenty of west Maui's goodness.  Nice work!

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