This is a story about a man and his drone. His obsession with aerial photography began when he was a toddler sitting on a luscious green football field and losing himself in his thoughts. While the other kids ran around the length of the field, pushing and shoving each other in an attempt to secure the balls between their legs, he chose to lie down with his knees bent and feet flat on the grass, looking up at the vast expanse of the sky and drifting into his world of imagination. Consumed with curiosity, he wondered what the world looked like from the stratosphere.
From that day onwards, he started daydreaming that one day he could grow a pair of wings and soar through the skies, indulging himself in the panoramic bird-eye views from above.
As his career developed, he made a name for himself in the world of photography. Despite all the achievements, he could not let go of his childhood dream, particularly unable to forget the serenity and peace he felt in the field on that beautiful day. When drones were first available, he firmly believed that the new technology could lead to a new breakthrough in his photography career.
He fell in love with flying drones immediately. Over time, he and his drone became inseparable. One day, feeling frustrated over the void of inspiration, he decided to bring the drone along on a round-the-world trip.
Carefully and methodically, he set the drone on the ground and had it properly calibrated. When the propellers spun at full speed, the drone took off the ground in a swoosh, carrying his childhood dream along and heading towards a promising horizon.
The drone flew above a beautiful lake. The lake was shrouded in slow-flowing thick fog. Far in the middle of the lake is an uninhabited island. The island is covered in rolling green hills and dotted with ancient ruins. Trees with spectacular fall foliage lined up at the edge of the island. The whole place looked straight out of a fairy tale. Sitting alone by the lakeside, he looked at the video from the drone camera, finding it hard to believe that he was living out his childhood dream.
Fighting against the strong wind, the drone circled around a mountain range like an eagle, capturing its inspirational views. As he trekked the valley, the drone hovered above him, almost like his guardian angel, zooming in on him to capture every single precious moment of his trip. From above, the snow-capped mountain was stunningly juxtaposed with the surrounding fall colors, creating an image that looked like it came right out of a canvas painting.
The drone followed him every step of the way. It flew farther and farther, accompanying him while crossing a vast ocean and ventured into a new continent – Africa. Africa was new to him in so many ways. He made his way to this exotic land in search of inspiration for his photography after a long frustrating creative block. He wanted to feel and experience the country with no preconceived thoughts. He took his time to savor every new discovery and experience every day – everything from the up-close experiences with wildlife, the hospitality of the native tribes to the exhilarating camel ride in the desert. He had never felt more alive in his life.
The drone glided past the desert at high velocity, sweeping up a gust of wind and sending a plume of sandy dust into the air. As the sun rose with a golden glow, he took out the camera and started taking pictures of sand dunes dancing and swirling to the flow of the wind.
He left Africa with a renewed sense of creativity and energy. He continued to head east for a change of scenery. The journey took him to a rustic village on a hill in Vietnam. As the rain gave way to the glorious sun, a group of farmers gathered outside a barn tending to their crops. Out of curiosity, every one of them raised their heads and cast a perplexing look at the buzzing drone overhead, wondering where it came from.
As a professional photographer, his mind is always working to figure out the perfect angle and composition. When the sunlight shimmered through the farmland, diffusing the best natural light, the drone caught a priceless moment of the local farmers working hard under the sun.
His journey ended in South America. Growing up, he had been drawn to the stories about the Amazon and vowed to eventually hike through its wilderness.
This extensive wilderness served as an ideal spot for him to put his creative strengths to the test. Being alone in these primitive yet picturesque surroundings is part of what drove his creative spirit. As he trekked through the dense rainforest, the drone rose to an altitude where the view of the epic river delta snaked through the thick and verdant forest, spreading out for miles and miles.
His photography delivered an in-the-moment feeling. His focus was to produce photographs that paint a nuanced picture of the story. He always chose an object in its natural setting – yet devoted a good amount of time to plan for his photoshoot.
The drone finally made it home after the long journey around the world. With GPS navigation, it smoothly descended from the air next to him on the ground. While bending over to pick up his drone, he heard a faint echo of singing coming from a football field. Casting a sideways glance towards the voice, he saw a kid in a football jersey lying on the far side of a football field, hands behind his head, singing to the blue sky above him. He grinned at the familiar sight, realizing how far he has come from the other side of the field.
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