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Cayce

Why do you fly a camera?

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Hello all. I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately as I plan for eventual camera use in skydiving. It seems there are many reasons why people fly cameras and I’m curious to hear some of your reasons.

There are the employed camera flyers at my normal DZ’s. All of which are pretty much on back to back loads with tandems and AFF’s and seldom jump with the fun jumpers.

There are the 4 way team video guys who are always working with their teams.

There are the freefly camera jocks who record their own jumps for record and for their friends, some of whom make compilations for fun and distribution to friends.

There are the freelance coach guys, not connected to the DZ school, who use the camera as a recording and teaching tool for their students. They sometimes jump with the fun jumpers and fly camera while participating in the big ways.

Then there seems to be a gray area of camera flyer that I’m unclear as to the etiquette. Some people sell fire wire downloads after a jump. Some people get paid by participants to video a hybrid or something or get their slot covered during a big way. Some of these guys seem cool and others seem a bit parasitic but maybe that’s just individual personalities. I’m curious what the etiquette is for these situations and I’m curious to hear how some more experienced camera flyers see the above groups. Are there others that I forgot? Why do you fly a camera?

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I'll pretty much video anything for fun these days. If a freefly team needs outside camera and i can afford it, i'll happily pay my own slots just to gain the experience.
I'm in the process of getting a coach rating and i've started going out with tandems with the aim of becoming a tandem camera guy in the end though. until then i pay my own way on everything.

Advertisio Rodriguez / Sky

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because i'm a freeflyer...you can't be a freeflyer without a camera!! :D

seriously, i do because i enjoy watching and making videos. cameras are a good instructional tool as well.
"Don't talk to me like that assface...I don't work for you yet." - Fletch
NBFT, Deseoso Rodriguez RB#1329

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I fly camera b/c I love the sport and I love seeing footage. I love seeing footage that I shot that came out well on a jump that we planned.ALSO b/c I forget alot of stuff. LOL

I love editing video to DVD for other to see. at the end of year when I present the video its cool to sit and talk abou those jumps.


I WORK as a Tandem Film guy b/c I love to see the expressions and I love to be able to hand someone something that they will watch for decades.
(if they knew that I would do it for free if they asked nicely I would be too poor to do any of it! LOL
)

it almost feels like a scam when I get paid:ph34r::ph34r:
My photos

My Videos

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I do want to add:

I waited WAYYYY long before I strapped a camera on. Its EASIER to KNOW how to fly in the air and under canopy and THEN learn how to adjust for your cam helmet IMO.

rather than hainv gsome experience in those areas and gerttin crappy footage for 100 jumps
My photos

My Videos

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I love making movies and love getting as much footage as I can for them

You never know the most 'boring' looking jumps can produce something thats awesome to watch back...
Do a search on skydiving movies.com for 'Mad Dog Productions' and you'll see what I have captured in a variety of jumps.....most of the time the good shots just happened...they were not 'planned'

I wear mine on nearly all jumps and really....i forget its there most of the time...

That aside...I have learned more about flat flying by filming 4 way ( and having my slot payed for) than you can think is possible.....
So how cool is that.....free jumps and experience !
(245lbs out the door....no wings...no problem !)

edit: Oh yeah....and I'm a freeflyer so you just HAVE to wear camera.......blah blah blah.....;)

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because no matter what people think.....your not just straping a camera to your head and looking at something.......i see it as a delicatly coriographed dance between the videographer and the subject
"Professor of Pimpology"~~~Bolas

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I skydive with cameras in order to create and build a video library of as many of my jumps as possible...
Tandems AFF and other student dives,, ( coached dives etc ) become a bit of the same old same old... but I like to pitch in and help our club when there are lots of students....though that can get to be a bit like "work ".[:/]
However alll the fun jumps,,, formation skydives and one and ones which I do... are always best appreciated if I have footage of them..
My minds eye does the real job of experiencing and absorbing the jump.. and generally It gets burned into my brains' hard drive in such a way that i can easily recall some vivid visuals of jumps made years and even decades ago...:);) ( especially when referring to my written log books..)
BUT,, to then have a crisp sharp tape of those jumps,, will allow me to enjoy and re-experience each of them ... ANYtime...:D
I am looking forward to enjoying much of this footage,, for ever and ever..
Good dives + good friends = great memories... (kinda selfish i guess, but I do make the effort to share footage , when asked )...It's also a good way to share my hobby with friends and family members who are often dedicated to remaining "ground bound".. while they may NEVER don a rig and climb into a jump plane,, they can often get a decent glimpse of what it is that we do... thanks to SONY...
I suppose I fly with cameras because what we do is so special and precious to me,,, that I cannot simply let it dissolve and disappear into the winds which flow across the dz....and so I " catch it" like some fleeting wisp of energy.. and keep it in my archives, so that it can be appreciated again and again :o:DB|:). jimmy

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Most of my jumps are tandem and AFF videos. I love it! I like fun jumps and all but you can't beat jumping with people who are experiencing a skydive for the first time. their expressions are priceless.

The bonus is I make money doing it, and I get a creative outlet in making the videos for my artistic expressions.:)

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I just love photography even if i'm standing on the ground shooting people turf surfing ,or tandems landing !!!!!But free falling with no camera helmet makes me feel nakid.................. :)


A friend will bail you out of jail , a REAL friend will be sitting next to you in the cell slapping your hand saying "DUDE THAT WAS AWSUM " ................

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Most of my jumps are tandem and AFF videos. I love it! I like fun jumps and all but you can't beat jumping with people who are experiencing a skydive for the first time their expressions are priceless.

The bonus is I make money doing it, and I get a creative outlet in making the videos for my artistic expressions.:)



I completely agree - Where else can you find expressions like this?

Peace,
Z






Action©Sports

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to skydive at all.

the need for new zealanders to become freefall photographers and tandem masters for our ever increasing commercial skydiving industry, gave me the opportunity to skydive at all. i was on the bones of my ass and the skydive diploma course came up and there was an opportunity to student loan my first 200 jumps and attain a commercial skydiving career. i did exactly that and have done 1800 tandem videos and now have a tandem rating and an aff rating. my fun jumping has only began really.

and i love it so.

now i am a comercial skydiver i can afford to do it.

without camera i wouldn't have been able to do it.

footage is the best. the jump becomes only a distant memory without it.
"When the power of love overcomes the love of power, then the world will see peace." - 'Jimi' Hendrix

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Wow! You guys seem to have hit on all of my reasons and then some.

I’m not flying a camera yet and I won’t be for a little while as you can see from jump numbers. But I’ll be asking newbie questions here pretty soon so stay tuned. Also, I was pretty excited to see that Elsinore had a good program to getting camera flyers up to speed. I had a good talk with them last weekend.

The reasons I want to fly a camera have all been mentioned: love of media as an art form, personal record, freefly coolness factor, and others. I also see it as being a way to be exposed to other disciplines of skydiving that I don’t have a predisposition to train for. Meaning, I don’t see myself being a RW four way guy but I’ll be happy to film them.

Anyway, I’m really looking forward to it in the near future.

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That please open photo is priceless dude! He looks surprisingly zen-like though :D



Yeah, he wasn't at all the freaked out type - just looked to me like he was saying something along the lines of:
"Please open. I promise, I'll never smoke pot ever again" . . . . . .or something. B|

Peace,
Z






Action©Sports

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There are so many reasons... I don't think I could pick one in general.

I bought my camera when I had relatively few jumps. I wasn't very good (in my opinion) and I wanted to get better. I figured that by putting a camera on my head the "good" jumpers would want to jump with me and I would get "good" jumps. It worked. :$ My flying skill improved immensley because I was no longer "thinking" about flying. My head was always in the "get the shot" mode and my body took over all the flying. I also figured that the other guys with cameras on the dz would want to jump with me and I might get some footage of myself occassionally. This wasn't the case so much. But that's ok. ahahahahah

I enjoyed reviewing the footage SO much that I started wearing it on almost every jump. Once my flying skills were better than adequate I went and got my Coach and Instructor ratings and started filming instructional jumps. The video became a great tool for debriefs and my instruction became better. I was no longer the only benefactor from the camera, my students started becoming better flyers.

It wasn't long that my videos caught the DZOs eye and he asked me to start filming tandems. Filming tandems is quite a different type of skydiving. Everyone was different. I started learning all new aspects of the sport and exploring my ranges. My flying skills started improving again exponentially. No hand RW will do that for you. I also got to "share" in that joy of the FIRST jump again. I love going out with the tandems. The extra money is great, don't get me wrong, but it's the FUN of sharing now that I really enjoy. The challenge presented in filming a tandem makes every jump fairly new and exciting. I'm constantly striving to improve so that my customers are able to take home a quality product that they too can share with people. Filming tandems taught me all about using the right tools for the job. It was no long a matter of grabbing a jumpsuit and going up. It was more like which jumpstuit. I looked at the tandem as kind of like a giant space ball. Once the drogue was thrown it didn't move around. I could fly up to it. Touch it. Whiz around it on all axis's. This allowed me to sharpen my skills in almost all the skydiving disciplines. As well as let the customer see themselves from different angles. Granted, you can't experiment too much with a tandem because of the danger involved, but a little here and there done safely adds up quick.

I recently put a still camera on my head and have started enjoying that almost as much as the video. Framing shots is now a concern that I didn't have before. The still camera makes me pay MORE attention to what is going on to try and get the shot. It has opened up my awareness level which translates into me being an even better flyer.

After all is said and done, I just love giving the experience of skydiving to someone, whether that be one of my friends or a perfect stranger I'll only meet once in my life. My quest for perfection only means that each one I hand out gets better and better.

I LOVE shooting camera. :)

Gary "Superfletch" Fletcher
D-26145; USPA Coach, IAD/I, AFF/I
Videographer/Photographer

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