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Challenging drone shot

cinematography drone cu danger

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#1 Luca Rocchini

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Posted 25 February 2015 - 02:01 PM

Hi everyone,

got one for you! I'm challenging myself with wanting to achieve a very difficult shot... I'll explain it.
I'm directing and shooting a music video for a friend and I had the vision to start it with a close up of a girl standing. The camera then will start rotating around her until it flies off the sky looking at the valley.
It should be all in one shot with not digital "stitches".

Now I thought to try asking the drone people if it's possible and they say that can only do a small curve around before flying off. They suggested a technocrane instead which is out of budget of course and anyway won't fly over the valley.

The "B" solution to achieve this shot is to use a steadycam around the girl and then stitch a shot from the girl to the sky. Probably the stitch won't be even be visible with the nowadays post technology but it should be tested anyway.

I believe that it would be a breath breaking shot and a great start of the video if all done naturally in one shot.

Any ideas suggestions?

Cheers!

Edited by Luca Rocchini, 25 February 2015 - 02:02 PM.

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#2 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 25 February 2015 - 07:41 PM

Can you mount the drone on a dolly on circular track to start the shot, then as you dolly around and pull back have the drone take off and fly away? Then paint out the dolly and track in post?
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#3 Mark Kenfield

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Posted 26 February 2015 - 12:31 AM

Have you actually had quotes on bringing in a techno crane? Down here in Melbourne I recently discovered that I could actually bring in a 30' Techno for about 30% LESS than a heavy-duty drone with operators for a day's shooting. Which took me by surprise - but is certainly good to know!

 

So if you haven't been quoted already, it may be worth a few phone calls.


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#4 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 26 February 2015 - 05:22 AM

Now, I'd be the first to admit I'm not a drone guy, but I can't imagine why orbiting someone would be a problem for a properly specified drone. Many (most) of them have GPS positioning and can execute a shot autonomously based on that position information.

 

The only problem I can think of is that they're concerned about safety.

 

P


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#5 Luca Rocchini

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Posted 26 February 2015 - 09:26 AM

Thanks for your options!

The technocrane is not possible cause then the camera won't fly around.

The GPS coordinates is something I should talk with the drone guys about.
Thinking to shoot on long lenses and then key frame to smooth out the movement.

The drone on the dolly, I'm not sure how much it would nicely leave the dolly. Also the dolly itself I'm not sure how fast it would turn around a fix point. Although it won't need to be painted out in post as the drone won't look down at the beginning of the shoot, but only looking ahead of it.

I guess I made a crazy shot in my head, but that's what we live for, right? :)

Thanks!

Edited by Luca Rocchini, 26 February 2015 - 09:27 AM.

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#6 Stephen Emrich

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Posted 27 February 2015 - 11:21 PM

You could use Blender (blender.org) but you would have to have a powerful computer with lots of RAM.
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#7 Dylan Sunshine Saliba

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Posted 09 March 2015 - 09:57 AM

Well, I remember watching a BTS and Vincent Laforet needing a shot like this and he actually just hand held the drone like a steadicam over his head while the operators kind of idled the throttle. I believe he used a bit of a longer lens to keep a safe distance from the actress, but then let go of the drone rig after the tracking shot and the drone flew right off. The shot looked great but was this the dangerous early days?!? Be sure to ask your talent before the shot "Are you willing to DIE for cinema?!?"
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