Saturday, May 10, 2014

Our first airborne video gig

"Paul the Toy Man" had been talking about this crazy gig that someone had been asking him to do that I thought sounded impossible. He said that someone named Barry Upton that is a combo music writer, event producer, radio video announcer producer and much more. He's a famous figure head here in Pattaya, were he spends much of his time now. In any case I guess Paul gave Barry the idea we could get some amazing video footage for this Barry Upton Introduction of some famous Thai supper star that was coming to visit Pattaya. For this we were expected to fly our video equipped quads in and on Walking Street and inside and above and in back of the Insomnia disco with literally hundreds of people swarming in and all around it, with lights and cables strung all over including overhead with laser lights mirror balls, high voltage lines and every other unimaginable obstetrical that you would never want to fly closer than 300 meters from. When I first did the walk by in the morning hours and saw all the telephone lines and banners and other objects hanging across the road I already thought it impossible and I told Paul just how risky I felt it was going to be. But not more than 7 days past and Paul said this is it we are doing it. I told Paul I would just go as an advisor and technical assistant and that he was going to do ALL the flying. At that time I still thought it would all blow over and never happen or at least that's what I was hoping. But this night he gave me final notice with “we are on”. The plan was to meeting at 9:30pm at front of Insomnia with Barry Upton who was going to be the master mind director of the shots and we would just tell him what we could and couldn't do and fly it. When we first got there it seemed the bouncers at Insomnia didn't have a clue what Barry Upton's plans were with us and didn't even want us coming into the bar with our equipment. But when Barry Upton arrived a few minutes later things suddenly changed. We could do ANYTHING, and that's just what Paul started to do with his first flight he flew Phantom s/n 1 all the way through the Insomnia disco with hundreds of people and dancers still doing there thing. I was stunned that any one would dare to do something like this but we got so incredibly lucky it all just worked. After I saw the rear of the bar was an open roof I started to think that it was going to be possible for me to do a flight and I went and setup the Honda Phantom V2 with the gopro 3 and gyro stabilized platform installed. Lucky I had two big beers before hand to calm my nerves because other wise I would have never done it. The first launch was perfect but in thinking too much about the surroundings and the flight I forgot to activate the camera so I had to land and start the flight over again. I used the technique we had been learning at the beach to launch and land from our hands so we didn't need as much space and made it much safer in this kind of location with a higher launch and landing location with less obstructions to get in the way. The rest of what happened in the flight is now history as I condensed the total of 45+ minutes of airtime we shot together down to about 3 minutes to capture just a few of the best moments of the flights that you can now see the preview here:

After the indoor shot I got from inside Insomnia I had more confidence and took one more shot with the Honda phantom on walking street. Paul continued to make history with his flights on walking street with Phantom s/n 1 with the gopro V1 mounted. With this he not only flew through the bar but also above the famous star that arrived that Barry was interviewing at the time above hundreds of people watching them as he did so. We gave all the footage from both aircraft that ended up being almost 8Gb of compressed video data as a promotion to Barry Upton to be used in in his TV video production he is working on that I'm looking forward to seeing in the near future that I will provide a link to it when I find it. So this was the first of possibly many new video cinematography adventures if we continue to get lucky. I'm hoping the future doesn't include as much risk as this one, but I guess you sometimes have to take risks to become known. Now people will start looking at us as the airborne video group that can fly and do ANYTHING. Only time will tell.

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