"Lights, Aerial Camera, Action!"
I had suggested that all female pilots should be in one group. No, not because they need extra attention but it had been my experience that one gets better results by taking that "competition" and "intimidation" factors between male and female pilots out.
Of course you never know how something plays out until you are standing in the middle of it; in this case, in the middle of my group of trainees. The moment we were all together, I had a feeling that this would just be one awesome class.
I had the privilege of working with Abbe, Anette, Devin, Dianna, Kim and Stacy. They showed lots of patience and desire to learn something very new. Stacy had flown before and even shot some incredible shots with her original Phantom without any FPV capabilities. It truly was a joy to see them develop their skills throughout the day.
In our case we had a very even skill level between our six ladies and that made leading the workshop a lot of fun. I was able to go over some of the basics and still capture everybody's attention and keep them busy.
Note: The final movie can be seen at the bottom of this post.
We spent some time doing just that before we "dove" into some of the aerial videography maneuvers; we practiced landing. Landing in a designated area, landing despite some gusts. Landing under pressure of low batteries, no FPV etc. And so it was to no surprise that it was suddenly 4 PM in the afternoon and we had not yet shot one single second of video.
It was remarkable to see the difference in flying capabilities between the original Phantom (with the latest DJI self tightening props) and the much more powerful Phantom Vision. Since there were some gusts, all my students did extremely well with that upgrade and seemed to be flying with more confidence.
Then we moved location to execute the last shot. The "Killer-shot"! We moved to the western part of the Ghost Town. At that area the shadows of the mountains was covering the town first.
The light was just great and it was now time to take something else out of my bag of surprises... it was time to fly with the EPSON Moverio BT-200 glasses. If you are not familiar with them - these are see-through glasses which also display the view of the camera; right in front of your eyes. The big advantage is that you still see what is going on around you, and you see what your aerial machine is seeing - both at the same time! If you want to learn more about them - go here.
Once everyone got a chance to fly with this FPV set-up, we wrapped up for the day and joined the rest of the workshop teams. We ended up being the last team still out in the heat, flying and capturing the beauty of the sun setting over the desert.