Drone life: Point Reyes from above

I remain a rank amateur when it comes to filming with a drone, but my skills are creeping upward when I get a chance to film. Last week we visited Point Reyes & spent a bit of time exploring the famous (and now sadly half-burntPoint Reyes shipwreck. Besides taking a few shots with my DSLR, I was able to grab some fly-by footage, below.

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A few things I’ve learned:

  • I wish I’d taken a few minutes to learn about Point of Interest Mode, which you can invoke easily via the controller (see another great little tutorial on that). It would’ve made getting these orbiting shots far easier & the results much smoother.
  • They say that “Every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way,” and nearly every 360º stitching attempt with Lightroom or Camera Raw craps out in some uniquely ghoulish manner. (I’m presently gathering materials to share with my Adobe friends.) Having said that, I have a certain affection for the weird result it produced below. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  • The PT Gui trial seems to handle the images fine, but on principle I don’t feel like paying $125-$250 for a feature in the apps I’m already paying for.
  • Consequently I’m finding it much better to stitch panos directly on-device using the DJI Go app. (Even that doesn’t always work, sometimes stalling out for no discernible reason.) I’m also finding it impossible to load pano images back onto the SD card and stitch them in the app—so the the opportunity while you can.
  • The stitched results often (always?) fail to register as panos in Facebook & Google Photos, so I use the free Exif Fixer utility to tweak their metadata. It’s all kind of an elaborate pain in the A, but I’m sticking with this flow until I find a smoother one.
Tips, tricks, and feedback are most welcome!

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Update: Here’s the boat from above (fullscreen):


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Tangentially related: I shot this 360º amidst the redwoods where we camped. I stitched it in-app, then uploaded it to Google Maps so that I could embed the interactive pano (see fullscreen).

[YouTube]

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