Stuck In Customs

My daily travel blog to inspire and get you motivated!

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Starting a Fire

Google Pixel

This is a great phone! I loved it so much that I bought my wife one… the camera is just incredible too. I’ve just set a little reminder to put together a Pixel-only gallery so you can see some of my favorite shots.

Daily Photo – Starting a Fire

While in Namibia, we visited this village and saw these gentlemen start a fire. I watched closely, as I always have this fear that I'm gonna end up alone in the wild and I'll need to know how to do this. Even though I watched every little detail, I'm still not sure I could repeat it. I think a better plan is just to take these guys with me.

Starting a Fire

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2014-09-27 02:00:30
  • CameraILCE-7S
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/4000
  • Aperture
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

Over the wine fields of Waiheke Island

Awesome Heletranz

If you don’t want to take the ferry to Waiheke Island and instead arrive in style, I recommend Heletranz as an incredible way to see the island and travel about. They can set you up for a day-long experience that includes visiting wineries, crazy car rides, knife-throwing, gun-shooting (those last three via Boomrock), and more! Here’s a live show we did while there!

Daily Photo – Over the wine fields of Waiheke Island

I got up with the quadcopter as many times as I good while on the island… looking at these photos really makes me want to go back. It's just a short ferry ride from Auckland, and now I have some new friends that live there. If you're planning a month-long trip to New Zealand, be sure to spend a few days over here, touring the wineries and whatnot.

Over the wine fields of Waiheke Island

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-05-26 15:55:19
  • CameraFC330
  • Camera MakeDJI
  • Exposure Time1/350
  • Aperture2.8
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length
  • FlashNo flash function
  • Exposure ProgramUnknown (58655)
  • Exposure Bias+0.656

Behind the Scenes of Becoming an Artist

Becoming an Artist

What? You didn’t get this one yet? Be sure to grab it in our online store. You can buy and download right now! πŸ™‚ It’s our highest-quality production and I think you’ll love it. πŸ™‚

Daily Photo – Behind the Scenes of Becoming an Artist

For those of you that saw Episode 1 of Becoming an Artist, you'll remember I was in this dugout rowing around hippo-infested waters! After we were done with filming, I took a photo of our awesome camera gal Bel Jones here, relaxing with her hand in the water. It's handy to have both a camera person and a model all in the same person! πŸ™‚

Behind the Scenes of Becoming an Artist

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2014-10-02 00:48:02
  • CameraILCE-7S
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/6400
  • Aperture
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

Massive Huka Falls

Continued P4 Pro + Problems

I sent my list of complaints to DJI and they still haven’t responded. So, I’ll repost them here publicly… I’m still recommending the non-“Plus” version of this device. You can also see my DJI Phantom Review here on the site.

1) At least three times while up in the air and fairly far away, the Plus thought there were obstacles in front of it. There was nothing… it was in the middle of the bright open air. This mostly happened when I was trying to fly it back to me. The two workarounds I found were a) to do a 180 and back it home to trick the sensors and b) switch to ATTI mode to manually fly it back. Of course, ATTI (Manual) mode can be very scary if the quad is a far away dot and you can’t tell what direction you’re going. (It seemed to happen whether or not I calibrated the compass before each flight.)

2) On four occasions the UI disappeared and we were left with a slightly zoomed-in version.

3) On three occasions I would get it up and somewhere between 50 and 100 feet it would say “Maximum Altitude Reached.”

4) After booting up, it took a long time to get a good connection to the controller. The connection was often weak even though there was no EM interference anywhere (we were in the middle of nowhere on the South Island of New Zealand).

5) Every time I fly now after a few minutes it says “Unable to save video – video cache is full.” For a while, this messed with my head because it made me think my SD card was full. That’s what it sounds like, right? So I kept landing and putting in new SD cards. But now I think it means the controllers video cache was full. I don’t know what that means or why it happens. The cache should just be dumping all the time as new stuff comes in, right?

6) The video that appears on the screen is not super-smooth and does a major tear randomly every 5-15 seconds. By “tear” I mean it shows half a second of video from 2-3 seconds previously. It freaks me out because I don’t feel like I’m getting real time video – also it makes me think I’m not getting smooth video.

7) When broadcasting to Facebook Live (See My Facebook Live Videos!), there was no way to upload the HD version or save the video myself. These are both options avail on the non plus version.

8) When going live on Facebook, I cannot choose my “Fan Page” – only my personal page.

9) Last, a minor one… when making the description for FB Live, I only have like 80 characters and there is no way to copy/paste more than a single word.

10) …another minor one… didn’t notice it until the import but the default clock does not update automatically. All my pictures say they were taken in 1951, which is well-known for being one of the worst years for quadcopters.

Massive Huka Falls

This was one of my scariest quad flights ever! I was staying up at the Huka Lodge which is so far up that river you can just BARELY see it. See those little bits of white up there? One of this is probably me, pale white with fear. Something about taking the quad over a waterfall is terrifying. I started to lose transmission power too at this distance… I was getting lots of beeps and bloops in the controller which added to the stress even more! Anyway, I ended up with this pretty cool vertirama that turned out pretty good… I was just so happy to bring the bird home and land it.

Massive Huka Falls

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-05-24 12:04:42
  • CameraFC330
  • Camera MakeDJI
  • Exposure Time1/320
  • Aperture2.8
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length
  • FlashNo flash function
  • Exposure ProgramUnknown (58655)
  • Exposure Bias

Approaching Antarctica

Kit.com

We tried something new here with grouping together all the “goodies” I use either for photography or fun! Here’s our link to Kit.com – enjoy!

Daily Photo – Approaching Antarctica

Somehow I talked my way into the cockpit of the C-130 that was landing on the ice in Antarctica. It was my first time landing in a plane with skis on the bottom, so it was pretty exciting. I wasn't nervous… and these cool-headed US Military guys put my mind at ease! πŸ™‚

Approaching Antarctica

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2015-01-06 16:24:05
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/125
  • Aperture
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

Out of the Bush

Upcoming Workshops

Be sure to check out our Workshops page for some goodies coming up! This time we changed the time of year for the New Zealand workshop to mix things up a little bit! πŸ™‚

Daily Photo – Out of the Bush

We stayed and watched these lions for hours on end. They completely ignored us, except for this 1% of the time when I captured this photo. Going back through these photos makes me want to do a serious Africa trip again! I can't decide if I want to go alone or maybe make a workshop out of it. Maybe I'll do both, like last time… half the time with the workshop and the other half by myself. It's a pretty good system, actually, and many of the attendees did the same thing. As long as you're in Africa, why not spend an extra few days or week there to test out your newfound skills!

Out of the Bush

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2014-10-05 05:03:23
  • CameraILCE-6000
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/100
  • Aperture4
  • ISO800
  • Focal Length200.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

Into the Windy Crevasse

Antarctica Photos

There are two ways for you to explore all my Antarctica photos. One is to visit my Artactica category on Smugmug – the second is to click on the Antarctica category on top of this post to see all the same stuff on the blog. The only difference is the blog sorts by “most recent” and Smugmug sorts by “most popular.”

Daily Photo – Into the Windy Crevasse

During one of my midnight walks in Antarctica I came across this deep, dark ice cave. I was by myself, but I really wanted to go inside. I thought the better of it, which is a high-point for my normally untrustworthy judgment. If I had gone in here and disappeared, I would not have been found for three more ice ages. But my camera should still be intact, and this would have been the final photo recovered by future-robots!

Into the Windy Crevasse

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2015-01-11 00:48:16
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/125
  • Aperture8
  • ISO200
  • Focal Length35.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

7 Dials in London

See you in London soon!

Don’t forget to A) Sign up for the London Photo Walk (Free) and B) Sign up for the special day-long workshop (not free but more than worth it!).

Warming up the Quad

If you’re a Passport member, you can see a 360 story of me testing out the Phantom 4 Pro + on a cold New Zealand morning here… making sure it’s ready for the big Europe Trip!

Passport Member-Only Content
Click here to learn how to unlock this content plus many other amazing member benefits.

Daily Photo – 7 Dials in London

Speaking of quadcopters, here's one of my favorite photos from London at this famous street where seven roads come together. I flew this one with my friend Stu. I was using the HUGE Inspire drone… it's really much too massive and ungainly! After I got it set up, I had to go through this very time-consuming IMU calibration… thought it would never end… but I finally got it up in the air to take this photo!

7 Dials in London

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2015-02-18 03:42:29
  • CameraFC350
  • Camera MakeDJI
  • Exposure Time1/270
  • Aperture2.8
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length3.6 mm
  • FlashNo flash function
  • Exposure ProgramUnknown (58655)
  • Exposure Bias-0.656

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