Sunday, July 31, 2011

Testing the Go Pro in Costa Rica

I went on a trip with some good friends to one of my favorite countries in the world, Costa Rica.

And of course we brought the Go Pro everywhere.

I bought the Go Pro headstrap accessory so I could be hands free.

I also connected it to my wrist using a boogie board leash, which ensured that we didn't lose it during activities, which includes the high risk activity of photographing ourselves looking at Go Pro pics.

I used it at the supermarket, buying fresh fish, and when the German bakery truck rolled by Playa Grande. Yummy!

We used it for white water rafting in the Tenorio river and got some videos from the calm beginning of the trip.

Here's our guide Colon help us get unstuck from a giant boulder.

Unfortunately I used it too much and the battery died right before the huge 10 foot drop. Damn!

In case you don't believe me, here are the stills taken by a local photographer who somehow emerged out of the jungle to sell us these photos.

Me showing no fear

We used the Go Pro for ATVing in and around Brasilito. We went through jungles, muddy paths, beaches, and small towns. Here's a little clip.

And then of course we used it for surfing in Playa Grande.

Unfortunately by the time we figured out how to get the camera on the board properly, the swell had subsided a bit.

On the day I went out with the camera, Playa Grande wasn't too Grande. Here’s me on a small wave.

I thought duck diving looked pretty cool.

For the surfing, we used their special kit which allows you to fasten the Go Pro to the board. Then you can aim it either at the surfer or at the wave in front of the board.

Here’s a nice video of Monkey on a wave.

And for the shot of the trip, here's Vinny out in front of a perfect chest high glassy face. No photoshop necessary.

It turns out this pic was taken just hours before a surfer in that same beach was killed by a shark in Playa Grande for the first time ever.

In life, as in surfing, timing is everything.

Friday, July 15, 2011

The Go Pro Trials

This summer, I will be testing out a new toy.

It's a video and stills camera known as the Go Pro.

I have always wanted a durable, compact, inexpensive underwater action camera and am so happy to finally have one.

As you can see in the photo below, the point and shoot can often deliver a great close up but produces a fish eyed wide angle effect on the background.

This is from my first test at home in South Florida. I took out our chocolate lab, Nala, and the object of her affection, a tennis ball, into the lake.

Check out the video below.

I love the quality of the underwater shots too and the watery sound you hear.

But of course when you have the underwater housing on, the audio is muffled.

This is also supposed to be full HD, but I uploaded it into Youtube as SD, which compressed it.

Here are a few more shots with her and our shepherd/golden supermodel mutt, Rudy.

I really like the stop-motion photography option with the Go Pro. You can set it to snap a photo every 2, 5, 10, or 30 seconds. I bought a huge memory card (32gb) so I don't mind taking 500 terrible photos to get 3 or 4 good ones.

Rudy and Nala posing

Another problem is that water drops often get stuck on the housing in front of the lens and distort the pics, sometimes artfully

Nala about to get airborne

Underwater Kick Cam