FOX 10 News Camera flying interview

PICTURE PERFECT: Man takes pictures, 15,000 feet up in the air

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“Skydiving, as one can imagine, is dangerous enough, but try to imagine the added element of trying to capture the perfect picture, 12,000 feet up in the air. One photographer does exactly that, as a career.

“As a kid, I’ve always been pretty active, always enjoyed extreme sports, whether it was doing the skateboarding thing or riding bicycles,” said Niklas Daniel. “In this case, this was just another thing I wanted to experiment with.”

One can call Daniel a skydiving expert. To date, Daniel has made more than 10,000 jumps, and counting, and he is now known as one of the best behind the camera, at 12,000 feet.

Daniel’s love for photography began at an early age, and after falling in love with skydiving, he blended his two passions.

“The moment is very fleeting,” said Daniel. “So, if you have a shot in your head that you would like to create, it takes a lot of practice, a lot of training, also a little engineering to try and put that together.”

Daniel also described the difference between photography works that take place on terra firma, and those that take place up in the air.

“If you’re taking a photograph on the ground, depending on the subject, you maybe have the ability to take a test shot, take a look at the settings, and then be able to adjust until you get that right shot,” said Daniel. “Skydiving is more of sport photography, where they’re trying to get that perfect shot and it’s not something that you can recreate necessarily.”

Daniel said in order to be a good aerial photographer, you’d have to be a great skydiver.

“Not is it enough that I have to fly my own body or my parachute for example, but I have to be able to do that without having to think about it that much that I can now focus on the shot,” said Daniel. “In addition to that, I have to be very aware of my closing speeds with other people, the distance I’m away from them and I also have to remain altitude aware. I can’t look at my altimeter constantly, because that would ruin the shot.”

Equipment is also important. Daniel’s helmet works as his rig, and his tripod is his own body.

Over the years, Daniel has documented other people’s jumps, along with the formation of skydiving teams. He has also produced training video. Daniel said some of his favorite pictures to take are during competition with his team.

“I really enjoy the pressure of having to get a specific shot, and then being able to present that to the judges,” said Daniel. “That’s been my expertise, but I also really enjoy the off-the-wall projects, so whether someone wants to light a parachute on fire or something kind of more in that direction. Something you don’t see everyday.”

Besides doing what he loves everyday, Daniel also gets to share his passion with others who might not get the chance to. He and his wife, Brianne, support “Operation Enduring Warrior” by donating their time to help wounded veterans enter the sport of skydiving.

Skydiving, one could say, is a sport that has taken Daniel to heights he never could have imagined.” – reported by Danielle Miller of FOX 10 News

For more information on skydiving photography, please click here, and check out the PictureCorrect interview by Richard Schneider.

 

USPA Parachutist Cover December 2016

EagleBear (Andre Gerner, Joseph Gerner and Nathan Roth) turn points on the way to taking the silver medal in open mixed formation skydiving at the USPA Nationals in Eloy, Arizona.

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Parachutist online

Skydive Radio Photo of the Week Show #227!

I would like to thank Dave at Skydive Radio for making my image below their pic of the week! Skydive Radio is the world’s leading internet radio show dedicated to the sport of skydiving.  Weekly episodes include commentary, feature interviews with industry insiders, listener-contributed photos, and e-mails from an audience that spans the globe.

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2016 Vexedart project

Words by Vedi Djokich

After the filming of vex 13 000 – skydive art project- https://youtu.be/sQFwrJ8M8jE , I wanted to revisit the concept of painting in freefall. This time though, the focus was on capturing the destructive passage of time. Documenting how it slowly erased the work and images that I created, until they ultimately disappeared. I wanted these designs to also have a connection to time, so I drew up these 3 images:

Rabbit Skull : representing the past – memory of a childhood pet.

Cicada Eyes : representing the present – changing & evolving visions.

Balloon Skull : representing the future – inflated fears & the inevitable. These designs were screen printed onto fabric, hand painted, and sewed into steamers that would inflate in terminal velocity. They were then attached to 30lbs jugs that I held onto while skydiving, which slowly released paint onto the images. The paint continued to spill out with each second of freefall, until it devoured all 13 ft of fabric, leaving nothing left. My white gear also got covered. During the last jump the paint jug imploded and my right arm was covered in black paint.

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I created unique wood pieces of the 3 images, along with hand printed (silk screened) & painted, limited edition prints of /30, on paper of each design.

These prints are available for purchase through my online store @
http://www.vexedart.com/store_prints_…

If you are interested in purchasing the unique 48’’ x 36’’ wood panel pieces please email me @ http://www.vexedart.com/contact.html
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Special thanks to the following skydivers, videographers and photographers for helping to capture this project.

Sara & Steve Curtis : – http://www.azarsenal.com

Nik Daniel : – https://blog.niklasdaniel.com

Jason Peters : – http://www.aboveallphotography.com

Thanks also to Cosmoprod for composing the original music.

Artist & Editor Vedi Djokich @ http://www.vexedart.com/home1.html

16 pages of behind the scenes content from this art series @ http://www.vexedart.com/Time_art_seri…

Instagram : https://www.instagram.com/vexedart_/

G+ : https://plus.google.com/+Vexedart

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/wwwvex…

Luke & Greg

Luke and Greg visited AXIS Flight School at the end of March 2016. The purpose of their visit was to be introduced to 2-way MFS (mixed formation skydiving) in a formally coached setting. During their week and a half long stay, the duo performed 28 training jumps and 10 hours of coached tunnel time, which allowed them to see every formation in the advanced dive pool. In addition Luke and Greg refined their individual, as well as formation flying skills.

The greatest and best camera helmet in the world

Recently I put together a series of articles that cover many different aspects of camera flying that were published by Blue Skies Magazine. After several inquires, I wanted to follow up with what my current camera helmet actually looks like. Over the past decade I have experimented with many different helmets, cameras, mounts, and accessories.

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Given that a jump may require a unique helmet set up, I wanted to share what I find to be the most versatile and user friendly today. Currently I am jumping the Cookie Fuel, which I find to be one of the most comfortable and well built camera helmets I have ever jumped. I have also recently added the Sony Alpha 6000 to my arsenal, which is very light weight and has some great features applicable to skydiving.

As you can see the new set up is very compact, and cuts down on a lot of the weight from the Canon 7D which I would use frequently. This makes it easy to fly and lowers the chances of an entanglement with the parachute system. In addition, this set up allows for easy access to all of the camera’s components without having to remove them.

If you would like a similar set up, you can order many of the parts directly from Cookie. Below you will find images for each individual item, as well as a list of links for the products. I hope this will streamline the process of your pursuit of the greatest and best camera helmet in the world for you.

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Helmet and mounts:

Cookie Fuel
Fuel dual top plate
Fuel cutaway chin cup
GoPro skydiving helmet top mount
Flatlock
CNC ALUMINIUM METAL SKELETON RUGGED FRAME PROTECTIVE HOUSING FOR GOPRO HERO4
OPTIMA II

 

Sight, indicator light, and switches:

The ultimate switch
Turned on
Non removable Schumacher Articulating Ring Sight Extender
Newton Sight without holder

 

Cameras and lenses:

Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital Camera – Body only
Sony SEL-20F28 E-Mount 20mm F2.8 Prime Fixed Lens
Sony VCLECU2 12-16 MM,f/2.8 Petal Shaped Fixed Ultra Wide Converter for SEL16F28 and SEL20F28
GoPro Hero4 Black