Aerial Video Showcase: Winter Walk of Lights 2014

In a remarkable project borne from passion, beauty, and awe, DCOnlineVideo produced this aerial video showcase of the Winter Walk of Lights 2014.  Commissioned by NOVA Parks, the video presented the 3rd season of the holiday light show at Meadowlark Botanical Gardens.  The Winter Walk enjoyed record attendance during the 2014 season, due to savvy marketing by NOVA Parks’ Brian Bauer who syndicated the video on the event website, Facebook page, and at a partner website, www.fxva.com.  Total video views skyrockets to more than 165,000, with NOVA Parks staff members crediting the video for a large portion of the visits.

 

The video shows the power of unscripted video, as Park Manager Keith Tomlinson, spoke with passion about the legacy of the gardens and the emotions visitors experience when walking through the show.

  • The video serves two key objectives:  To showcase the majesty of the exhibit and to encourage visitors to return to the Gardens in springtime.
  • The project audio track was pulled from an unscripted interview with the park manager, then edited to present the full story about the light show and how it overlays into Meadowlark Garden’s mission.
  • The primary sponsor, Dominion, is not mentioned by name, but instead given a visual credit in the opening.

NOVA Parks Presents: 2014 Winter Walk Lights from Steve Jarriel on Vimeo.

VIdeo of The Day: Aerials of Selby Bay, near Annapolis, MD

Very proud to present this video which was produced on Father’s Day off the South River near Annapolis, MD.  Credits include producer, videographer, and editor.  As my experience with aerial photography grows, I’m fast learning the importance of advanced planning, checklists and adaptation to weather-related production challenges.

The blue hues of dusk lighting are especially vivid in this video. Also pay attention to the fight paths, height of camera, position of sun and length of shot, which were all considered before I piloted the DJI Phantom 2 with GoPro Hero 3+ Black Edition.

Drone Pilot Assaulted By Woman On Beach (video)

The sensitivities of individual people, as well as the privacy expectations of the general public, both came into full view during a confrontation between the pilot of a unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and a woman who appears to have been agitated by the photographer’s activity at Hammonasset Beach in Madison, CT.

Police charged 23-year-old Andrea Mears with 3rd degree assault and disturbing the peace after she allegedly attacked the unnamed 17-year-old photographer (who captured the assault on his iPhone).   A full report of the incident can be read here or at this news coverage published by WFSB TV in Hartford, CT.

Here is the video, which is quickly spawning on YouTube.

Mears is being universally decried on social media with few, if any, people supporting her view that she was entitled privacy at a public beach.   However, the episode underscores the perceived threat some people feel from aerial photography as well as the general confusion which surrounds this fast-emerging form of videography.

Until there is more public acceptance and understanding, here are some best practices for UAV photography pilots:

  1. Prior to production, double check to ensure you are on public property.
  2. Prior to takeoff, identify an isolated area, away from any people or crowds, where you can safely take off and land.
  3. Make any flight passes at an elevation that’s high enough to avoid giving the public a sense they might be injured from the UAV itself.
  4. When you are engaged by a member of the public, clearly identify yourself and the purpose of your video.  Ask upfront if they have any concerns.
  5. Disarm any anger by being prepared to discuss the difference between public and private property, as well as steps you’ve undertaken to protect the privacy of others.
  6. If the project is for commercial use, make sure to obtain the proper permits.
  7. Connect with local authorities in advance of the production to post them on its date/time and steps that are undertaken to preserve public safety.

NYC Freedom Tower B.A.S.E. Jump

You’ll feel this one in your gut as the three men who jumped from the top of NYC Freedom Tower (erected at the World Trade Center site) released video footage of their exploits.

The three, plus an accomplice who kept a look out as the jumpers allegedly trespassed to gain access to the building, posted the footage on the same day NYPD charged them with burglary, reckless endangerment and jumping from a structure.  However, as you can read in this CBS News report, the men describe the jump as a “calculated risk” that illustrated a major security flaw at NYC Freedom Tower.