Dreams to Reality

Working on this MIA photo project a major goal is to incorporate all that is unique not only to the city but also the skate scene. One of the places that stuck instantly in my mind and that I wanted to make sure was in there is the Miami Marine Stadium aka Rooftops. I have shot a few photos there over the years, but I wanted to try and capture it from a different perspective, from above via helicopter. Like every project these day's we are on a tight budget, so I threw the idea out to Forrest and was instantly down to make it happen one way or another. After a few calls, price checks, and a little convincing of how amazing the photo would turn out he was down to pay for it with high hopes of getting the photos run in a mag so he could get paid back with the photo incentive. We had herd a rumor that you couldn't get up on the roof any more, so the day before we snuck in past the barb wire fence and security guard, and made sure it was all good. It was actually repaired a little bit from the last time I had been up, which was a good thing. A major catch to this, is that it is illegal to be there, and I have been kick out by both a full time security on land, and also by a police boat. So we had to time it out so that he wouldn't be getting kick out while we were in the air, and lose the cash on the chopper. So I dropped him off with a few water bottles and set off up to the airport, while he would wait an hour or so up there till we showed up in the air. The pilot was also a photographer and gave me a few tips. He really made it a point to explain that it was a lot harder than you would think. The chopper was almost constantly moving, and that usually the photographer only comes back with one or two usable photos. We took all the doors off so that I could shoot from both sides. This being my first time up in a Heli, it was a bit intimidating already let alone with no doors between me and the ground. The "hard than you think" comment that the pilot made was really true. There was a strong enough wind to where he could only stall in one spot for a short amount of time. So we kept circling around while Forrest was trying to crack off down below. I would have to time out at about where we were going to be at in relation to when Forrest was going to get him in the air, then get the appropriate lens on, frame it up, focus, expose, then reframe hoping to be in the right spot at the right time that Forrest was in the air. After about ten or fifteen circles I felt like I had what I was looking for and we broke out to cruise over the beach on the way back to the airport. I knew that I had gotten what I originally set out shoot, but it wasn't till I got back that the experience settled in, and I saw everything full size that I realized what it was that we created all from a random idea.

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