A Go Pro + some helium balloons + fishing line = cheap aerial photography

Last year I bought a little GoPro camera and I sent it up into “space” using a weather balloon.  The footage from 100,000 feet up was really cool but the best stuff was recorded right after take off.  Since my little space balloon adventure I’ve wanted to see if I could send a GoPro up just 500 feet or so and get some overhead shots.  It looks like I’m not the first person to have that idea because today I found a tutorial that explains how to do aerial photography with a GoPro, some party balloons and a fishing pole:

The footage that the guy in the video shot is pretty hazy but it did look steady enough to be usable.  One of these days I’m going to set up a rig like this and get some areal shots for a video contest entry.  Contest judges love crazy camera tricks!  No seriously….they do.  Judges always like it when it’s obvious that someone put a lot of thought and work into their entry. If you slip a cool overhead shot into one of your videos, someone is going to be impressed with your creativity.

AND NOW, A PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT:  Helium is a non-renewable natural resource.  It’s the most abundant element in the universe but it’s very hard to come by here on earth.  Most of it has to be extracted from pockets of gas in underground caverns.  The human race is using helium at an absurd rate and we are on track to exhaust the Earth’s Helium supplies in less than 30 years.  Scientists estimate that if the government sold helium at an appropriate market rate, a single “Happy Birthday” balloon would cost about $100.  In the next few years we’re going to be hearing a lot of stories about our diminishing Helium supply.  So if you want to send your GoPro up in the air, you better do it soon.

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