2020 January
i went on a drive south today in my #electriccar. by adding some energy at free public chargers, the whole trip of 182.1 miles cost me less than what a single gallon of gas would cost (and had i paid at home for all the electricity needed to go that far it still would’ve only cost about the same as 2 gallons of gas). #driving #bridge #bay #road #overcast #cloudy #water #electricvehicle #bev #ev
#sunset #bridge #intracoastal #water #boats #fromabove #palmtrees #buildings #reflection #intracoastalwaterway #clearwaterbeach #florida #gulf .. shot with #vintage #canonfd #70-150mm #telephoto #lens on #sony #nex5n camera (with hazy skylight filter and dirty sensor) from #clearwater #library #rooftop. the camera was giving an error and the shutter seemed to be staying open too long & overexposing images, so i had to guess exposure and turn it off and back on between every shot.. although these aren’t what i was originally thinking, i’m gratefully i was still able to get usable images with a nice feel.
#stars #night #longexposure #trees #suburban #nature #lookingup .. shot on #sony #a5000 camera with #rokinon #12mm #wideangle #lens #rokinon12mm .. quickly edited in #instagram app
#nature #preserve #water #bay #bayou #mangroves #marsh #land #lookingdown #fromabove #birdseyeview .. #flying #dji #mavic #mini on #overcast day. #mavicmini #aerialphotography #aerial #florida
remember, it's okay if things don't go as planned or aren't as perfect as one desires.

this isn't where i was originally going to go fly, though it's where i ended up.  while not all the images may be the most exciting, it was good to test #flying with a bit of a breeze (and it was also good to use manual exposure for the first time on the #dji #mavic #mini, which certainly helped with consistency, so i was able to use all the same settings in the #instagram app when editing the photos.. any differences in color are due to there being no setting for manual white balance). i didn't fly up to near 400 ft like i had for some shots on my previous flights.. all shots here are at an altitude of 100 or 150 ft.  #mavicmini #nature #trees #water #aerial #aerialphotography #lookingdown #fromabove #florida #winter
#morning #nature #trees #lake #golfcourse #road #houses #florida #winter #flying #dji #mavic #mini #quadcopter #drone .. seeing limits of what can be done editing in #instagram app on phone with less than ideal lighting/exposure on some of these. #aerialphotography #fromabove #lookingdown #aerial
more photos while practicing #flying the #dji #mavic #mini #quadcopter #drone.  shot using timed shot interval mode, so more of what i happened to get rather than carefully composed.

in the last shot, one can see the intracoastal, dunedin causeway, and honeymoon island, 4 to 7.5 miles away by air.  at the left of the image one can see buildings on clearwater beach, over 10 miles away.  even on the low resolution instagram photo hints of this are visible when looking closely or zooming in.  i think that shot was at an altitude of a little under 400 feet, where most of the lower ones were somewhere around 100-150 ft.

(i had quickly edited this twice in the #instagram ios app, though there seems to be a bug where it is not applying the lux setting and most of the vibrancy is missing as the other settings were minor.  these copies are edited in the #snapseed ios app.. it’s not an exact match to what i had originally done in instagram, but looks much better than the instagram versions without the lux setting.  at some point i may stop editing (or spending as much time and effort) on the phone, as even when it does work right, the adjustments made on a tiny phone screen are not as good as i could get on the computer, and often the color or density is off since the phone screen isn’t calibrated like a computer monitor can be)

#mavicmini #aerial #aerialphotography #nature #water #lake #laketarpon #lansbrook #park #dock #goldenhour #sunset #light #trees #outdoors #florida #winter #clouds #reflection #fromabove #lookingdown #houses
#flying #dji #mavic #mini. #morning #light #trees #nature #road #water #houses #fromabove #mavicmini #aerial #aerialphotography #florida #winter
looking up at the sky we are all connected, regardless of where we are. #nature #sky #outdoors #clouds #lookingup #earth
#rooftop #terrace #sunset #overlook #view #fromabove #water #sky #clouds #dusk #bridge #boats #park #harbor #marina #buildings #skyline #trees #roof .. shot with #vintage #pentax-110 lens on 7.5+ year old #sony #nex5n camera [sometimes you don’t need the latest gear to create nice images.. and the qualities of an old lens give a nice feel to the photos]
#nature #sunset #water #gulf #sand #beach #dusk #park #goldenhour
#sunset #dusk #nature #sky #littleplanet #tinyplanet #littleworld #360 #360x180 #stereographic #projection #stereographicprojection #fromabove #lookingdown #lookingup #elevatedphotography #poleaerialphotography #talltripod #hdr #dunedin #causeway #florida #intracoastal #water #palmtrees #sand #clouds #sun #moon

happy new year and new decade! may the 2020s be the decade where most (if not all) of humanity awakens and experiences the flowering of the heart. with this unfolding, may we all effortlessly live in peace and harmony with each other and the planet.

to start the new decade with a clean slate, i've cleared out all my previous posts, photos, comments, likes, etc on facebook and twitter. most of what i had posted can still be found somewhere on my website:

 
often the most beautiful moments in life are the simplest, like sitting with a few friends by the water as the sun goes down

#nature #sunset #sky #clouds #intracoastal #water #sand #dunedin #causeway #florida
with such an overcast sky and a little bit of drizzle, i didn’t expect to get too much when heading over to the park, though was blessed with a little bit of nice light and some color in the sky, and a nice quiet feel by the lake in the park. #nature #park #overcast #sky #cloudy #sunset #water #reflection #plants #trees #lake .. raw images shot on #iphonese and edited in #snapseed #ios app. #iphone
it’s amazing what one can discover with good light, a higher perspective, and the beauty of nature.

after reviewing shots from my last flight on the beach and walking back towards my car, i saw the sun beginning to break through the clouds and had a feeling it’d be worth sticking around the area for another flight. i drove up the road to a public access spot that was taken by another car when i first got to the beach and saw they were gone. i parked and walked to the water to have a look, and the islands were dark at the time. i decided to go back to the car and get the mavic mini to see what i could capture. shortly after taking off and flying toward the closest island, the sunlight broke through the clouds and i got these magical images. after some days with bad light or too much wind, i was blessed with being at the right spot to get perfect golden hour light. it’s beautiful when the divine plan unfolds quite brilliantly (and unexpectedly).

#nature #goldenhour #magical #light #natural #beauty #island #intracoastal #water #clouds #lookingdown #fromabove #aerial #mangroves #houses #sunset #clearwater #beach #florida #clearwaterbeach #flying #dji #mavic #mini #quadcopter #drone #mavicmini #dronephotography #aerialphotography #landscape
#sunset #clouds #sky #nature #lake #water #trees #park #fromabove #flying #dji #mavic #mini #quadcopter #drone #aerialphotography #mavicmini #aerial
i’ve always been drawn to quiet, natural, and wide-open areas of #land.  i look forward to when i live in a quiet natural area, and am glad to have rural areas and nature preserves so close by in the meantime.  a drive to or through the country is a good break when living in dense urban or suburban areas.

i was originally going to go somewhere else instead of here, then spontaneously decided to head toward the nearby country area as i wasn't quite feeling the other spot i was thinking of going to.  i actually stopped somewhere else before this preserve, but i saw a few other cars there and preferred to get shots of the empty landscape without anyone walking on the paths (and wanted to be able to concentrate undisturbed while flying with some wind). when i first got to the big grass field for parking here, there were lots of bugs and i started to leave to go fly somewhere else, though am glad i decided to stop alongside the entrance road (and it was bug-free) so i could get these images.  as it was a little breezy i only took the mavic mini on a short flight not higher than 200 ft altitude.  if one looks closely at the shot facing south one can see the tampa skyline on the horizon ~17 miles away.

#nature #preserve #agricultural #farm #rural #country #landscape #trees #flying #dji #mavic #mini #aerialphotography #fromabove #lookingdown #mavicmini #aerial #florida #winter
remember, whenever any unpleasant feeling arises, simply choose to be with it long enough, and "this too shall pass”. [there is always a peaceful bliss on the other side, after we fully feel through whatever is there without resistance] #feeling #healing #beach #nature #walk #clouds #city #bay #palmtrees #park #water #sand #afternoon .. shot on #iphone, edited in #instagram app. #iphonese #hdr
a simple shift of perspective is all we need to see the bigger picture.

#nature #preserve #trees #water #canal #flying #lookingdown #aerial #fromabove .. all images #uncropped, shot right at mid-day in harsh light with #dji #mavic #mini #quadcopter #drone #aerialphotography #mavicmini
#flying #dji #mavic #mini in harsh light in the middle of a #winter day in #florida. looks one can get good images, even just quickly editing on the instagram ios app (some of these shots may be lacking vibrancy.. i discovered a bug in the #instagram app later in the evening when posting images i had shot at sunset, where it was losing the lux setting). #mavicmini #quadcopter #drone #aerial #fromabove #lookingdown #aerialphotography #nature #road #golfcourse #houses #trees
often we just need to move forward through whatever resistance we may have, however it shows up in our lives.  upon doing so we can realize new, greater perspectives in life.  how and where we're looking from make all the difference.

images from first test flight with #dji #mavic #mini #quadcopter #drone (not really composed, just what i happened to get with timed interval photo mode as i was trying out the controls and fly app).

#aerial #nature #fromabove #sunset #flying #trees #road #water #goldenhour #mavicmini
#sunset #dusk #nature #sky #littleplanet #tinyplanet #littleworld #360 #360x180 #stereographic #projection #stereographicprojection #fromabove #lookingdown #lookingup #elevatedphotography #poleaerialphotography #talltripod #hdr #dunedin #causeway #florida #intracoastal #water #palmtrees #sand #clouds #sun #moon #moonrise
with seemingly so much going on in the #world, #remember to take a #break from each day to #meditate or to go for a #walk in the #park. simply surrounding yourself with #trees in #nature is #healing, and the beautiful #goldenhour #light reminds us how magnificent this planet is.

also remember to practice #gratitude. some times it’s easier than others, though if we take a moment to look at our lives, there is so much to be #grateful for [like, for those of here in #florida, we can be grateful these couple days of #winter aren't nearly as cold as in many other places. if in a cold place you don’t like, find what you can enjoy about the experience, like sitting by the fire or the magical feeling of the first snowfall of the season]. by shifting our energy to one of gratitude and appreciation, we'll begin to see more positive experiences show up in our lives.
explored this park while waiting for my #electriccar to charge. this was one of the nicest #electricvehicle chargers i’ve been to, right in the #park, next to the #lake. #goldenhour #tree #trees #sunset #light #sky #clouds #grass #nature #dock #water #walk #florida #winter #windy #breeze .. all images shot on #iphone and edited in #snapseed #ios app, most either #hdr or #raw. #shotoniphone #iphonese
often all we need to do to feel better and become more present is go on a short #walk in (or by) #nature.  #goldenhour #trees
 
#nature #water #landscape #river #land #park #lookingdown #fromabove #flying #dji #mavic #mini #quadcopter #drone #aerialphotography #aerial #florida .. i filled up and downloaded the micro-sd card for the first time since i got #mavicmini, and quickly edited these in #adobe #lightroom instead of on my iphone like i had been doing with all the previous shots i took with it.  since the beginning of the month/year/decade, i’ve been photographing and posting something at least once per day, editing all on my phone except for these and the infrared ones (as that memory card also filled up while shooting those), though think i’m not going to keep forcing myself to take and post something daily.  the workflow and interface is so much nicer on a computer compared to going through hundreds of shots on a tiny phone screen, and, although i’ve been able to get good images (despite bad light and weather some days), creativity (like anything else in life) flows so much better when one is inspired and relaxed (rather than trying to force oneself to do something, especially at or within a limited time period). i think soon i'll start to experiment with shooting video clips on the mavic mini as, other than two video clips i didn't post (one of which i think i shot by accident), i've only been shooting photos in the timed interval shot mode (which also makes sorting through photos difficult as there are so many (and composition may not be ideal on many of them), though it will allow me to later put everything into a time-lapse video of all my flights). it'll also be good to play around with not always flying so high and using the mavic mini more for its smooth camera movements via gimbal stabilization rather than for its aerial perspectives.  its great how much one can do with a flying camera.  i remember many years ago wanting to be able to just set a camera out in front of me and have it stay there without a tripod.. its nice to see this idea have manifested into radio-controlled quadcopters with stabilized cameras (and now pocket-sized too!)
#nature #fromabove #lookingdown #water #beach #trees #goldenhour #park #houses #boats #pier #flying #dji #mavic #mini #quadcopter #drone #mavicmini #aerial #aerialphotography
#flying #dji #mavic #mini #quadcopter #drone on #cloudy #overcast #winter day at #clearwater #beach #florida .. it was a little windy so i only flew up to 200ft altitude. #mavicmini #aerialphotography #lookingdown #fromabove #aerial #nature #gulf #water #sand #clouds #buildings #waves
with more traffic than expected, i just made it to the gulf as the sun was going down behind the clouds on the horizon. #sunset #nature #water #gulf #palmtrees #park #beach #sand #birds
#clouds #nature #sky #trees #lookingup #walk
#sunset #causeway #beach #intracoastal #water #dunedin #florida #littleplanet #stereographicprojection #tinyplanet #littleworld #clouds #sky #dusk #palmtrees #nature #cars #poleaerialphotography #talltripod #lookingdown #fromabove #lookingup #hdr #360x180 .. shot on #ricoh #thetas #360 camera, edited in #rollworld and #instagram apps
#sunset #sky #clouds #nature #trees #lookingup #dusk .. shot with #rokinon #12mm #wideangle lens on #sony #a5100 camera. images are low res versions (that the camera wifi only seems to transfer to the phone). #rokinon12mm
#sunset #sky #clouds #nature. part of a timelapse. #dji #mavic #mini hovering in air. #mavicmini

the text below was going to be the caption for this instagram post, though it got way too long:

www.instagram.com/p/B7NAE4SpvYk/

sometimes it’s funny how life tests us. several years back, i recall meeting a few others and seeing how their biggest potential lied just beyond a single block or fear they had to overcome. its funny how life works and how just in our everyday experiences we’re given the opportunity to overcome a block and grow or move forward in some manner. sometimes, at times often (at least for me), it seems that we simply need to surrender and let go of attachment in some way. recently one of the aspects of surrendering has been in finding patience and being more present in the here and now, rather than continually looking for some solution to move forward. as we let go and (re-)learn to trust that all will be fine, we begin to see more of the beauty that already exists in the here and now, and can be more grateful for what we do have and for all that we can experience in this life. society has a tendency to push so many of us (especially in the modern western world) to constantly seek more, bigger, better, faster, etc, etc. this sort of need to constantly improve or move forward takes us away from the simple beauty and presence we can find in the here and now. often all we need to do is simply change our perspective. when we step out of any one fixed viewpoint, we allow for many more possibilities to unfold in our lives. when we’re not looking to the future (or the past), we can live in the present, the only time and place anything ever happens. one challenge i’ve faced has been this letting go of where things will go in the future. it’s been challenging as i can see where things (especially technology) will go before they get there. being able to see a few steps or iterations beyond what currently exists, if its something i see that would be good for a new project or improvement or simplification of what i currently have, i’ve often found myself continually researching and looking for any potential sign of development in the direction i’m seeing. i’ve had to learn patience and to trust that the universe will bring everything (but perhaps not this very instant). sometimes it feels like things in the physical world manifest so much more slowly than i can imagine them (and sometimes it feels like i won’t or don’t even want them by the time they show up), and sometimes its frustrating when its such a simple concept that really isn’t too much of a stretch from current technology but others don’t quite see it yet and i don’t have all the resources to make it myself [like in the case of electric vans being readily available for purchase here when they are overseas].

at the same time, i realize how quickly new technology is developing these days. seven years ago i saw the release of what became a very popular remote-controlled quadcopter drone. the summer before i had gotten a kit to build a radio-controlled powered parachute as that would allow me new opportunities in aerial photography above what i could do with kite aerial photography (which allowed me new opportunities beyond what i was doing with a very tall tripod). the rc powered parachute didn’t work as well as i had thought it would (nor did another plane-like kit i built after that), so i ended up getting the first dji phantom a couple months after it was released. i flew it some that year and a bit more the following two years after that (especially after getting the first ricoh theta camera and hanging it off of it), though shortly after having it i was seeing how i wanted to improve the experience by being able to take it with me more easily and on bike rides and whatnot, but it was pretty large [i actually did get a very large bike basket for an inexpensive electric bicycle i had, though when i moved to a second floor condo the bike was too heavy to regularly carry up and down the stairs so i don’t think i ever ended up taking it with me on the bike]. i did see smaller quadcopters come out in the following years but the good ones started off at a higher price-point than i wanted and it seemed there were new regulations coming out that would make flying less fun with more to think about, so i only flew what i had for around 2.5 years before i ended up selling it and focusing on other methods for elevated views like pole aerial photography (and a little bit of kite aerial photography). after years of waiting and having pretty much given up or forgotten about aerial photography from higher views, i saw the new dji mavic mini announced and released a couple months ago. while it was missing some of the features for better quality photos and videos that their higher end models have, it was still quite capable (and it’s small enough that it’s below the weight limit for more regulation in many places). after watching lots of footage others shot with it, i decided i’d give it a go despite it not being perfect. i ordered it last month and waited weeks for it as it was on backorder. it arrived last night and this afternoon i went for the first flight. these are some of the images. it was funny as i almost gave up on it today too, as the process of updating the firmware and doing the initial calibrations was taking longer than i expected and then i thought there might be an issue with it as i didn’t know the trick to be able to power it or the controller off. i went outside and was able to take off shortly before sunset, with just had enough time to take it on a test flight to make sure it was working and try to get some shots. shortly after it was in the air the sprinklers came on where the landing pad was on the grass and i had to rescue it while still flying. there weren’t any clouds in the sky and the golden hour light on the landscape was pretty much gone, so i figured i might not have any usable images to post here today. after reviewing them, i was pleasantly surprised to see i did have these that i could use, even if they weren’t perfect. i’ve kept them all at the original crops (and i wasn’t paying attention to actually composing any photos and just had it set for timed interval photos every couple seconds). the originals were a bit over-processed but the results were still quite good and usable. and the experience of flying was so much better than all of my previous rc aircraft. the first dji phantom only had a gopro mount and i had to pretty much guess what it was seeing and exactly where it was in the air (and the images could have wobble in them as there was no stabilization, and videos were pretty much out of the question from what i recall, though i did manage to make some time-lapses i liked). being able to see what the camera is actually seeing and have data of how far and high it is right on the screen (and see it on the map relative to where i am) makes the experience so much better and easier. more than once i thought i was going to lose or had lost the phantom as i couldn’t tell which way it was going and wasn’t sure if the return to home function actually worked. gratefully i never did lose it, and am glad to have the added ability to see where it’s at. just flying the short route i did today with the mavic mini would’ve previously been a nerve-racking experience in worrying i might not get the phantom 1 back. it’s funny, as most people who just started getting remote-control quadcopters in the more recent years have never known what it might be like to fly without the visual aid of the map or what its seeing. it’ll be even crazier to see what new technology continues to develop in just a few more years or decades. sometimes its good to wait to upgrade technology so we can have a better appreciation of how much change has actually happened (besides this less consumeristic approach being far better for both the wallet and environment). i just ‘upgraded’ to an iphone se a few weeks ago, and even though its not as capable as the latest phones, the camera and speed are noticeably better than an iphone 6 (and now that serves as the screen for the mavic mini app).

after all the waiting, all the various challenges in aerial photography, almost canceling the order to get the insta360 one r camera with drone attachment, and even thinking after it arrived yesterday ‘why did i order this, do i really even need it, am i actually going to use it?’, it looks like it was good a choice and i look forward to all the images i’ll be creating with it. [often we just need to move forward through whatever resistance we may have, however it shows up in our lives. upon doing so we can realize new, greater perspectives in life. how and where we’re looking from make all the difference.] it’s amazing what a simple change in elevation will do for landscape photography [even just walking up around 10 feet on some stairs at a park a week ago made a noticeable difference]. i also enjoy the metaphors aerial images give of seeing from above in relation to opening up to greater perspectives and higher consciousness. and the really significant major changes we’ll be seeing unfold in this world will be a result of more and more of us continuing to awaken to higher levels of awareness.

one must learn to #perceive the #light beyond what the human eye can see.  there's much more to life than the senses can tell us.  #quiet #walk #woods #nature #preserve #trees #pinetrees #florida .. shot with #vintage #pentax-110 lens on #infrared converted #sony #a5100 camera.  #ir #bw #blackandwhite #monochrome #grayscale
#sunset #water #clouds #sky #nature #park #walk #goldenhour #dusk #trees .. #raw images shot on #iphoneSE and edited on #snapseed ios app #iphone #shotoniphone
#nature #palmtree #walk #florida