Mini-chopper films city from above

22:20, Jul 03 2013
Ollie Wall
EYES AND AIR: Aerial photographer Ollie Wall takes his quadcopter for a spin in central Christchurch.

A budding aerial cinematographer has used a remote-control helicopter to capture a bird's-eye view of some of Christchurch's landmarks.

Ollie Wall, 20, has always been intrigued by remote-control toys but did not think of attaching a camera to one until he became interested in cinematography about three months ago.

The first model he bought did not have enough lift and was hard to control in slight wind, so he saved up to buy a $2000 quadcopter from Australia that was strong enough to carry a camera into the air.

Wall said aerial media ''just started as a hobby'', but when he was asked to make a website as part of his Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology information technology degree, he realised there was an opportunity to turn his aerial photography hobby into a business.

He used his new piloting skills to fly his camera over some severely damaged homes in Sumner's Kinsey Tce and film some of Christchurch's landmarks, including Christ Church Cathedral and the Isaac Theatre Royal.


The video was uploaded to YouTube a week ago and had had more than 5400 views by yesterday. 

''I just think it's a unique perspective that people don't get to see.''

He had been ''overwhelmed'' by the response to the video and planned to fulfil requests for a video of the residential red zone over the next few weeks.

The quadcopter is only 40 centimetres square, allowing it to fit into small spaces for shots that would not be possible by using a conventional remote-control helicopter. 

Wall controls the helicopter using a live video feed transmitted from the camera to a pair of video goggles.

The Press