Thursday, January 25, 2018

Surprising Solitude in Arches National Park

In my experience, most surprises that occur on trips are thoroughly unwelcome. When you’ve allotted so much in the way of time and resources to an expedition, the best surprise tends to be a total lack of surprises. However, there is one surprise I always hope for, but rarely experience: solitude. This is nowhere more rare and precious than in a National Park. In Arches National Park it seemed a fool's dream indeed as we embarked upon our canyon lands adventure.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Silver Rivers and Sleeping Farms - Aerial images of winter in Washington

Winter is a difficult season for photography in the lowlands of Western Washington. All the leaves
have gone, and the landscape is turned a sullen quilt of sepia and monochrome. I've done my best this past week, between boughts of torrential freezing rain and howling wind, to capture the gloomy atmosphere of the season from the air.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Nature's Wrath in the North Cascades

It was the tail end of a 10 day long backpacking adventure - the previous day being a grueling traversal of the rugged rollercoaster of Jackita Ridge. We could have cut things a day short - dropping down the switchbacks to Ruby Creek and the North Cascades Highway, but the bright alpine sky and the towering peaks of Crater Mountain beckoned, and it was quickly decided that a few extra nights were needed to do this alpine wonderland justice.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Forest Flight

Forests are complex webs of life - and most of the layers of those webs remain far beyond the reach of prying human eyes, bound so firmly as they are to the mundane floor of woodland realms. Perhaps the most rewarding experience I've had since I've started flying the DJI Spark is to venture into these vibrant no-mans-lands and traverse the secret tunnels in the reaching arms of the high tree limbs. The diminutive size of this drone makes it ideal for this purpose, and I look forward to further expeditions in the canopy of the temperate rain forests of the Pacific Northwest.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

DJI Spark low light test.

I decided to test out the DJI Spark's camera in dim conditions while we still had the outdoor lights up. I was happily surprised how well it did, even at high ISO's! However, while the images look great, they were not easy to capture. The various collision detection and vertical positioning systems were highly unreliable in the darkness, and the drone wouldn't stay stable and still in the air. I had to keep constantly fiddling with the controls to keep it from drifting.


Friday, January 5, 2018

Flying above the clouds with the DJI Spark

Earlier this week I took the DJI Spark out to fly up near Mt. St. Helens. I got some amazing footage from above the clouds (which was scary to film!), as well as of the Toutle River flood plain created behind the Sediment Retention Dam.

Monday, January 1, 2018

DJI Spark First Flight Photo and video gallery

Giant Sequoia surrounded by goat trails in the field. 
I finally have a drone! The DJI Spark is the latest addition to my photographic tool kit, and I don't know of any other piece of gear that has done more to expand my creativity. Everything looks totally different from the air - even with just a few dozen feet one can look down and see patterns otherwise indiscernible.