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Old October 22nd, 2010, 01:22 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Andrew Waite View Post
We're pretty excited to be offering this to our clients both wedding and corporate. I would love your feedback on the video.
In all my excitement to reply on other points in this thread I forgot to say how fabulous the aerial shots look that you have incorporated into the video. I have been toying with the idea of using a camera equipped Mikrokoptor for adding the Wow factor of aerial views to our videos. Seeing what you have done just confirms that my idea was good. That is very nice work & also extra points for avoiding the temptation to overdo the use of aerial shots.
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Old October 22nd, 2010, 10:53 PM   #17
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Thanks guys for the feedback.... I will get some photos up soon of the helicopter we are using. We are taking it back out tomorrow for another wedding. Here is the other wedding we shot the same day as the other. Take a look!

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Old October 23rd, 2010, 02:00 AM   #18
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I forgot to mention that both videos where shot WITHOUT a gimbal, gyros, or addition stabilization. The camera was locked off on the fuselage and so all camera movements where made via rudder movements only. We're waiting on our 3-axis gimbal assembly, gyros, and stabilization software. After we have that, stuff will start to look A LOT better! I have another wedding in the morning and we'll be using the chopper again... we're slowly working out the kinks. Very excited!
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Old October 26th, 2010, 01:19 AM   #19
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Ok... finally getting around to posting pictures... This first shot is our "current" setup, a modified and stretched Logo 600 (700 class equivalent) with the camera fixed to the fuselage.... it works, but it's not ideal... especially with rolling shutter and vibration issues... not to mention having to fly blind. It's like using a steadicam without an lcd screen on the sled OR the camera... you're just guessing. So, we are investing in a REAL system complete with 3-axis camera gimbal, computerized camera stabilization, gps, telemetry, video downlink, etc. It's costing a pretty penny, but will be worth it.... at least that's what I'm telling my wife! Can't wait for the glorious sound of the UPS truck pulling up to my studio!!!
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Old October 26th, 2010, 10:57 AM   #20
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Hey Andrew. I did some browsing around and found the following product.

Airfoil Helicam, Mini-Pro1

It looks pretty solid and allows you to pan/tilt and even can be fitted with a gyro and video downlink, which are both available on the same site.
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Old October 26th, 2010, 06:05 PM   #21
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Actually I was thinking of something like this:

TRIAX | AERIAL
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Old October 27th, 2010, 05:21 AM   #22
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What you did is really beautiful but is also very dangerous.

Basic safety rules or even common sense require you to have a safety zone around your flying path of at least 50m. And most of the commercial aerial video and photography drones have been officially grounded for the last few years in the US, every company is just going around regulation or playing words with the FAA as there has been no real solution. You'll find hunders of discussions like this one on the specialized forums:
Legal Issues For Aerial Photography - Page 1 - RunRyder RC Helicopter

Your shot above the wedding crowd is totally reckless, imagine you had you bird go down on these people! Plus you were flying so low that if it had gone down you had no way to deviate your course enough for avoiding these people. These are killing blades, and they were not small ones cause for lifting a Red I know the horsepower required on these kind of ships... My God this is scaring the hell out of me just looking at it.

Can't believe you had an insurance signing off on those kind of shots. Or maybe you should send me their contact the next time I want to put a 5 year old kid driving on the highway in reverse.

I imagine your pilot told you that it was ok to do so. Maybe he did not warned you about the potential criminal charges you, him and the producer of this piece could be facing. You should take this video out of the internet right away and pray for that nobody reports you.
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Old October 27th, 2010, 09:09 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Nigel Barker View Post
If you are not the military or a law enforcement agency so your budget is more modest then the Mikrokopter is worth a look. It uses the same principle of multiple rotors & clever software (Open Source in this case) to keep the machine flying level & stable. It comes in various configurations & can lift over 1kg (2.2lbs) so can carry a decent size camera. MikroKopter - Wiki: MikroKopter.de

You can get everything from a kit of parts where you solder the 'brain' yourself right up to a fully assembled system for the equivalent of about $2300 to which you just need to add a R/C transmitter & batteries.
.
I'd looked at this myself but couldn't find anywhere that I could buy a complete kit (assembled). Do you know of somewhere?
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Old October 27th, 2010, 11:52 AM   #24
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Amaud,

I appreciate your concern, but I think you might be a jumping to judgement a little too quickly here and blowing this way out of proportion... especially without knowing the whole story here. First, it was the groom's idea for the shot and the bride quickly jumped on board and we weren't going to say no the client on her wedding day. To this day there has only been ONE reported death due to an RC helicopter... and it was a FREAK accident with a gas powered heli. Our helicopter is electric, NOT gas and has safeguards such as a kill switch that would make this nearly impossible. Second... it just LOOKS like we are flying low, but believe me lenses have a good way of fooling the eye. Our pilot is WORLD CLASS and is sponsored by many companies and "crashing" is not an option. Although not impossible, a mechanical failure isn't going to "KILL" anyone. I'm probably just as likely to kill the bride with my jib or seriously injure her by getting a Steadicam shot that was a little "too" close. My point here is, you don't need to be concerned with my clients safety, ESPECIALLY without knowing the whole story or knowing what safeguards we have in place. Unlike most videographers out there we actually do have insurance. I will not be taking this video down and won't even be considering it. You are more than welcome to blow the whistle on this one if you'd like. Maybe RC models regulations are strict in France, but in the US they aren't regulated yet. I don't want you or anyone else to get the impression we are just throwing caution to the wind, that's certainly not the case here, but you have to understand that you can't possible know or even begin to understand what went into a production without even being there.

I'll get off my soapbox now :) Time to make some films!
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Old October 27th, 2010, 06:11 PM   #25
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AirHogs

Heck, Arnaud, my kids want to get the AirHogs helicopters with video cameras... I'm not worried about "blades o' death"... and I don't think anyone will be coming by to arrest anyone playing with one of those toys, which are basically small versions of what Andrew is talking about...

After looking at the link, with all the other broken links that supposedly supported your post (which seems to be a bit paranoid, and borders on trolling, not allowed here on DVi), I'm not seeing ANY substance, just a lot of speculation and FUD.

I've played around with an R/C simulator, and frankly I won't be doing any heli flying anytime soon <VBG>, but I'm intrigued by the potential, with the proper aircraft and rigging AND a good pilot, I see no reason this wouldn't be as safe as crossing the street.

The first time some dumb Papparazzi does something stupid with an aerial rig, I suppose there will be issues, but ust because people can find something stupid to do with almost any piece of technology, doesn't mean you can legislate stupidity... or we'd all be in trouble!
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Old October 27th, 2010, 06:16 PM   #26
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I suppose there will be issues, but ust because people can find something stupid to do with almost any piece of technology, doesn't mean you can legislate stupidity... or we'd all be in trouble!
Especially wedding photographers!

<grin>

Andrew

Last edited by Andrew Smith; October 27th, 2010 at 10:32 PM.
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Old October 28th, 2010, 05:42 AM   #27
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I'm surprised and a little disappointed with some of the reaction to what's been described as Arnaud's "paranoia". I'm not qualified to decide whether it is paranoia or not but it seems to me that if there's any danger of even superficially injuring a guest with a spinning rotor blade let alone taking out an eye or disfiguring a face then we should be cautious rather than cavalier.

Any amount of insurance won't compensate for the negative publicity that could ensue from an accident - and remember that many of us live in innately litigious societies.

Were I in Andrew's place I think I'd want to check out the details again. Just my view.
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Old October 28th, 2010, 10:24 AM   #28
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Philip,

You are absolutely right. It is something that one should be very cautious about... and also maybe you are not qualified to decide. Of course there is an element of danger, but I would say no less than using a jib. The thing that freaks people out is a spinning rotor, this isn't the set of The Twilight Zone... It's not a full scale heli and technology has come A LONG way and these things are VERY safe. In the blink of an eye.... at the first indication that there is something wrong or some sort of failure the rotors could be locked and stoping instantly. With electric your worst case scenario is far from disfigurement... yes it's going hurt... but so is getting wacked in the head with a Jib because the operator wasn't paying attention... ok I'm sure it's going to hurt a lot more than that, but you see my point. You can find danger in just about anything in every day life.
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Old October 28th, 2010, 10:56 AM   #29
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Andrew, I'm sorry but I don't see your point. I am not qualified to diagnose paranoia - I am qualified to know that taking unreasonable and unnecessary risks with your clients and their guests isn't a sound way to run a business.
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Old October 28th, 2010, 01:00 PM   #30
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I'm sure a lot of New Yorkers remember the the New York Jets fan who was killed by an out-of-control RC aircraft during a half-time show. So any concern is not paranoia and certainly not trolling. I was really surprised and concerned when I first saw this post. Could you explain in more detail how this is safer than before. You mentioned a kill switch, but is this really effective? And Iīm sorry, but "the groom really wanted it" is not a justification for anything.

Donīt get me wrong, this could be a fine thing to do. I'm just skeptical and need more persuasion. By the way, the shots are great, except for the turns, which are a little wobbly.

Last edited by Bill Engeler; October 28th, 2010 at 01:01 PM. Reason: fixed spelling
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