Keywords

Long weekend.
Cape Agulhas.
Braai.
Long exposure.
DJI Mavic Pro.
Beach.

I’m determined to do stuff this weekend. Watch this space.

(Spoiler: I’m probably still in bed.)

No woman, no fly

The Mavic learning curve continues.

My wife was away this weekend, and I had big plans to take the kids out for a quick flight. However, the weather was weird on Sunday. Cloudy one minute, sunny the next; calm one minute, dangerously gusty immediately thereafter.

Not flying weather.

Still, that did give me the opportunity to use that title.
Silver linings, ne?

The purpose of the planned flight was to practice some videoing. The photography thing is coming along nicely, albeit slowly. But I look at other people’s Mavic videos and I want to be able to do that too. I did try a 4K video a couple of weeks ago, but my settings were all wrong and I ended up with a pretty much completely unuseable, 2 minute long, 1.8GB file.

Some reading up and a couple of helpful Youtube videos later, I adjusted the video settings and took the risk of popping Florence (for it is she) up to 50m or so to test them out.
Good news. The quality was excellent: clear and sharp. And “only” 150MB for a 30 second flight. So basically 5MB per second. I’m not sharing it here because it (the content, at least) is rubbish, but that’s not the point. Suddenly, there are a whole lot of opportunities open to me – the world is my whelk.

There will come a time (possibly) when videoing in 4K resolution is necessary/possible (the Mavic can do it, but my PC simply can’t handle it). In the meantime, 2.7K is far more manageable, and – to an amateur like me, at least – appears basically just as good [professional videographers fall to the floor in laughter].

Watch this space, because great* things are coming.

* terms and conditions apply. 

A morning flight?

…I hope, anyway.

This post was written ahead of the weekend, precisely to leave ample time to (possibly) do some flying this morning.

I’m not sure exactly where yet – most of the peninsula having been comprehensively locked down by Table Mountain National Park – but 48 hours ahead of… well… now, the weather forecast is looking excellent for a quick trip up into the Cape Town skies (other regional atmospheric locations are available). And that makes a change, given that the infernal SouthEaster has been blowing annoyingly strongly and seemingly constantly for several years weeks now.

I’m sure you’ll be among the first to see some photos or footage assuming that I do manage to get up somewhere (ooer/careful now, etc etc).

Watch, as they say, this space.

Redmires

I was lucky enough to be dragged up brought up in Sheffield, located on the edge of the Peak District National Park. All the benefits of the city with the countryside right on your doorstep. Hashtag winning.
As kids, we used to cycle up to Redmires Dams (not actually in the National Park, but ever so close) and enjoy the fresh air and the views (and ride down the unused dam overflow conduits).

We never had quadcopters though. Whoever took this image has a quadcopter, and s/he has captured an amazing image of the three dams and the view down to Sheffield city centre.

This is high class dronery – the sort of thing I aspire to produce. I don’t know who took it (very happy to attribute and adulate if anyone knows), but it’s amazing.
Given the tools now at my disposal, the only obstacle I face is (the lack of) my own ability.

It’s a large obstacle, but it’s one I intend to be able to adequately fly over at some point*.

* please note: terms and conditions apply | no time scale has been set for this project | results may vary | it would help if this fecking wind stopped blowing | watch this space

That was the weekend

A bit of an odd one. It seemed busy, but still rather relaxed. The jobs list was approached, but not really ever adequately dealt with, meaning a chore-related hangover for next weekend.

There were two braais, although neither of them were the one we thought we were going to. There was beer, gin, vodka and there was wine, although it wasn’t actually one of those weekends.

There were two seven hour playdates, leaving the kids happy, but broken.

There was a spot of flying, but not as much as I wanted and not where I wanted. I need to find an accurate map of just what is owned by Table Mountain National Park and what isn’t. I need details.
South Africa has 2,798 km of coastline, but the vast majority around us seems to be owned by TMNP. Their no-fly rule (which I’ve stated before that I completely accept) still proves limiting.
Anyway – photos:

…because one should always make the best of a bad situation.

And so to bed. Well, not quite. There is some football to catch up on and some brandy to add to the list of beverages above.

Because all’s well that ends well, right?

Right.