Filming for 'Sail the Daedalus'

So many of the photography things that I do are overly covered by NDA.  Lawyers pour over the legal crap in the contract and in the end, I turn over raw video or photos that are owned exclusively by the contracting party.   I don't get to talk about the details, I don't get the advertise that I do work for "XYZ Corp".   

But, I do get paid for it.    I call these type gigs photography booty-calls. They aren't ideal but hey, the gear doesn't pay for itself so I'm not opposed to these arrangements when equitable.

By contrast, shooting for local companies is usually orders of magnitude easier and more enjoyable.  We agree on the particulars, meet up and do a set of shoots.   Mostly all governed by a handshake.    I like that.    In these sorts of arrangements, I'm usually not under a non-disclosure and usually retain the rights of the raw materials from the shoot, though I'm generous with it putting no limitations on the customer's usage of said material. 

More relationship, than booty call. :)

Over the weekend I shot some video for a local Sail charter that happens to be a friend of mine. We had a great time!  I will say this, though.  Drone photography of sailboats is hard.    I've done some offshore work and it is considerably easier if you can shut off a motor and just land back on a mostly stationary deck or nearby platform.

For a sailboat, though, the challenge is that you are flying a 2ftx2ft quadcopter with spinning blades capable of severing bone, rigging or sails.   You have to land it on a 5ftx5ft moving platform that is often heeled to one side, moving as quickly as 9 mph.    If they stop the boat, you have a sail in the landing zone.  If they keep the boat moving, you have a moving target.

I tried it both ways.  Some, filming from the boat and landing back there and others filming from the marina.   Filming from the marina was considerably easier but from the boat was easier to coordinate shots.  The Inspire 1 *can* be caught but I recommend a Falconer's glove for safety if you choose to do this and honestly the onboard flight controller isn't thrilled with being plucked out of the sky.

All in all, I was thrilled with the Inspire 1's performance in 5-12 mph winds, over water.  The resulting 4k video was incredible.   Unfortunately my Final Cut installation is acting up so we are having to settle with the 1080p version for now but the results are still decent, I thought.