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Wednesday, July 24, 2013


Nestled between the Ca' d'Zan mansion of the Ringling Estate and the University of South Florida sits one of the prettiest and most unique campuses in South Florida. Fronting Sarasota Bay, New College of Florida is an avant-garde public liberal arts school that encourages self-directed study by its students. The director of communications commissioned me to use an unmanned aerial vehicle — a quadcopter with a Sony NEX-7 piloted by my colleague Chris Odom —to update campus imagery and provide images of the new student center.

Quadcopter with NEX-7 

Easily one of the most contentious pieces of equipment in photography and videography, UAVs (and we do not favor the continued misuse of the word drone) can provide you with that critical camera position below 400 feet that falls somewhere below a true helicopter and above a scissor lift. They are now being used successfully in a variety of industries for capturing that hard-to-get and unanticipated vantage point. For capturing aerials of the university architecture and layout of building spaces, UAVs like the quadcopter and Chris Odom's new custom-built hexacopter that can fly a DSLR are a less expensive alternative to commissioning a chopper that produce "how did he get that shot" results.

Below are a few examples of our aerial work of Cook Hall, College Hall and the Ca' d'Zan mansion as well as an iPhone snapshot showing the UAV at work during this shoot. Please contact me at jc@jcgamble.com if you have an interest in capturing this type of imagery of your next project.

College Hall and Sarasota Bay

College Hall and Cook Hall

Ca' d'Zan Mansion

Pilot Chris Odom and Quadcopter 

Thursday, July 18, 2013


The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) magazine commissioned me to document the Central Florida Aerospace Academy last Fall for an article on the school's unique aviation curriculum. Located across the street from the Florida Air Museum and the Lakeland Regional Airport, the public school provides a unique opportunity for high school students to immerse themselves in the world of aviation. 

We photographed students in Air Force ROTC formations, students on flight simulators but one of the more successful areas was Hangar B at the airport where Breezer Aircraft is located. Students often spend time learning aircraft maintenance under the supervision of owner Mike Zidziunas and pilot instructors Mark Ducorsky and Randy Wildman. Below are a few of the images from the day along with a scan of the final layout. 

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