By now we're well acquainted with the power of aerial cinematography, with both 'big' cameras and small -- and, conversely, big copters and small copters. Results can range from strikingly beautiful to beautifully haunting, and anywhere in between. Even (or especially) with a GoPro! Now, Aaron Grimes and Russell Brown have combined the disembodied perspective of aerial photography with the strangely deserted modern ruins of an historical Californian mining town. Meet Bodie, CA by way of the GoPro HERO3 and DJI Phantom quadcopter.
"A town in a 'state of arrested decay,'" Bodie is considered "the official state gold rush ghost town" as Gizmodo points out. As such, plenty of people find themselves in Bodie each year, but always as tourists, never as residents. According to Wikipedia, the town's deserted and decaying nature makes it "a popular destination for organized night photography, emphasizing the eerie nature of the park."
Though Aaron and Russell's piece was shot when the sun was up, that eerie nature is not lost on the viewer. On the contrary, Bodie looks as breathtaking and bizarre in the daylight, when you would expect to see signs of any kind of life. Check out, through the lens of a GoPro HERO3: Bodie - From the Sky:
An aerial view of California's best ghost town. Filmed with a DJI Phantom and a Zenmuse H3-2D on a GoPro Hero 3. The settings on the GoPro were 2.7k with ProTune on. Edited in Adobe Premiere Pro, After Effects, and Photoshop. Filmed by Russell Brown and Aaron Grimes.
It has been clear that HERO3 footage is not only good enough to intercut with "better" digital cinema cameras -- which in itself is a great thing, especially if a GoPro is the only way you can shoot aerially -- but that it's capable of achieving just plain beautiful material in its own right. I think Bodie stands to further solidify these sentiments.
Thanks for the heads-up Aaron!