We have many videos highlighting the incredible new world of drone photography and sometimes there are more misses than hits. Every so often though, we stumble upon a video from Vimeo that stuns our visual senses with its cinematic style and edgy soundtrack (“If You Ain’t Never Had The Blues” by Boo Boo Davis). This is what Ian Wood’s aerial video of the city of Los Angeles accomplishes. If you caught the latest season of “True Detective“, you couldn’t help but notice the number of aerial clips that transitioned between scenes. Wood’s compelling film mimics the style, and makes this concrete jungle look as if it is a never ending sea of cars, freeways, buildings and beaches. Shot in a span of several months, Wood’s video also highlight the importance of preserving the city’s quickly disappearing historic structures and public art spaces. In this age of modernity, it is easy to overlook these visual gems, but thanks to this video, we are reminded of their beautiful presence.
As Ian states on his Vimeo post
This is the city-wide follow up to my aerial exploration of downtown Los Angeles from last year. And much like with downtown, I continue to be awe struck by how much of this vast city I have partially or completely overlooked before undertaking this video. And like most voyages of discovery, I’ve realize there’s so much more to find.
Going hand in hand with the charm of traveling is the joy of discovery and with the advent of drone technology, travel photographers and filmmakers today are gifted with immense capabilities of documenting cities and other landscapes, ushering a new era of creativity. Showcasing some of Los Angeles’ iconic landmarks to lesser known art spots, Wood’s aerial video of downtown Los Angeles is a fun watch.
It is great to know that artists like Ian Wood will be ‘droning for good’ to continue the influx of urban videos like this. However, for travel photography and video enthusiasts out there, Wood has this piece of advice:
With all the controversy about drones, it’s important to remember that they can be (and often are) used responsibly. As with many emerging technologies, the laws struggle to keep up and we must employ a common sense approach to their use that is respectful to community, safety and the law.
Wood’s also provides an extensive list of his drone protocol to avoid accidents and crowds.
My Drone Protocol
– Avoid busy periods, rush hours, special events, etc.
– Avoid sensitive areas or anything that can be misconstrued without prior permission.
– Avoid crowds. Small groups only from the periphery with ground spotters and two-way radios.
– No flights near airports, TFR areas and restricted airspace (FAA class B, C, D).
– Be prepared for local air traffic below 400ft including awareness of helipad locations.
– Operate at or below roof lines to assure separation from air traffic.
– Avoid “loitering” next to residential homes and apts.
– Respect residential areas for quiet and right to privacy.
– Eliminate any material that inadvertently reveals someone in a place of privacy.
As Wood’s proves, you can create beautiful content while being a responsible pilot.