As a small business located in a small town (Waterford, Ontario), we believe that working with the local community is an important part of living and doing business here. One of our ongoing community projects over the years has been documenting, through video, the evolution of the Waterford Heritage Trail.
The Waterford Heritage Trail is a hiking and biking corridor built along the ponds of Waterford. It follows the path of an abandon railway line that used to run though our downtown core.
Recently, many of the major phases of construction were completed including docks built and pathways paved. This was our cue to grab our gear and begin filming “the reveal” (as they say in “makeover television”).
We decided that the best way to show the trail as whole was to get some aerial shots, so we brought in Boundless Media to help us get the shots we needed using a drone.
Drones are still relatively new to the consumer market, only just becoming readily available a few years ago. They’ve become super popular really quick because filmmakers are now able to get angles and shots that were never possible before on a low budget. They can film smoothly over water, fly under bridges, get low to the ground – pretty much anything you can think of. As the technology advances so does the the ability of the drones. Many models give the operator the ability to control the camera separately from the actual flight of the drone, so you can have 2 people operating it instead of one. This allows for really dramatic and interesting shots. They even have one that will follow a tracking device, so if your skiing down hill or kayaking in a river, it will capture your every move where ever you go.
I think the biggest down side I’ve seen as the popularity of drones has grows is that there are a lot of people who ONLY use drone footage in their videos. Aerial footage really should add to a video, not necessarily become the foundation of one. It’s hard to tell a story or have any emotional connection to what’s going on when everyone is the size of an ant.
We’ve used drones many times to bring an additional element to the story we were already trying to tell. For example, when you look at our Norfolk County videos, we have aerial shots paired along side closeups and medium shots to tell a story through a sequence.
As we continue to create the Waterford Trail documentary, we’ll definitely use the power of aerial shots to help show the development and total size of the trail – something we wouldn’t really be able to do without the use of a drone – but our main focus will always be on the story.