Clever marketing goes beyond memorable advertising when it demonstrates exactly what you are missing out on by not owning a product. I’m not usually a sucker for advertising, preferring instead to make my own mind up by trying out a product and reading reviews – but thanks to the many videos I’ve seen on YouTube, I want a GoPro camera.
The GoPro HD Hero represents somewhat of a revolution in amateur high definition video. The small, light and hardy design makes it perfect for capturing amazing feats in some of the most extreme conditions. Understandably, the marketing campaign mostly consists of handing out cameras to interesting people and letting them run wild.
Just so we’re clear, this column has absolutely no affiliation with GoPro, and not all videos are marketing material either. This is a device that seems to be able to sell itself.
Avalanche Cliff Jump With Matthias Giraud
If you are going to ski down a mountain with the intention of jumping off a cliff, please remember to film it. Most of us will never get this close to an avalanche, so thankfully there are adrenaline junkies with cameras strapped to their heads to at least give us a taste of the action.
The best bit of this video for me isn’t the jump, the parachute or the avalanche but the reaction at the end. “OH MY GOOOOOOOOD!” just about cuts it, I’d say.
Beautiful Day At The Dog Park
We’re not all extreme sports aficionados and some of us prefer walking the dog instead. This particular film appears on the official GoPro channel but was shot and edited entirely by a GoPro owner on a trip to the dog park.
If you’ve ever wanted a dog’s-eye view of the world then what better better way than by strapping a hardy camera to it and seeing what happens. The GoPro comes with a waterproof protective housing so even if your pooch goes for a dip, your film and camera will keep on going.
It turns out just about every recreational device can be turned into some sort of vehicle for the extreme, and this time it’s pogo sticks. I’ve never actually managed to maintain any semblance of balance on a pogo stick, and so watching this video left me in awe.
A number of GoPro cameras have been used here to great effect, particularly in the time-slice sections. Time-slicing is achieved by using a number of different cameras set up at different angles to achieve a 3D “bullet time” effect.
What happens when base-jumping goes wrong? How crazy do you have to be to jump off a cliff with a wingsuit? Hopefully this mini-documentary produced on a GoPro will go some way towards answering those questions.
As you’d expect there is some incredible footage captured via helmet cam, stomach cam and one particularly insane shot of a guy holding balloons as the flyer passes overhead.
Crankworx Whistler – Brian Lopes Downhill Air Run
Downhill mountain biking is an intense but fairly accessible sport, and Whistler in British Columbia is undoubtedly its spiritual home. If you’re into your downhill two wheeled action then there’s a good chance you’ll be planning a trip to Whistler some day.
This particular air run from Brian Lopes is very fast indeed, though it’s not until around 3:40 in that things start to get really interesting.
Toy Robot In Space
Shot as part of a music video for the song Edgar by Lucky Elephant, watch as a toy robot is carried into space with the help of a weather balloon before the pressure experienced 30,000 metres above the earth causes the balloon to pop.
The robot is then safely carried back down to earth via parachute and located 11 miles away from the initial launch site thanks to a GPS receiver. The whole thing was filmed on a GoPro, spliced into a music video and has since been shown around the world.
Has your camera ever been stolen by a seagull? One YouTube user claims that this particular video is that of a seagull in Cannes, France stealing his GoPro camera. After careful study, and despite a few doubtful YouTube commenters, the video does indeed appear to be a GoPro.
It’s HD quality, has a very wide lens and it’s no secret that the camera is small and light enough to be picked up by the rather large European gulls. The best bit? The loud and triumphant “caw” as the bird lands atop the castle. The user apparently had to climb to the top of the castle in order to retrieve his camera, but the footage was undoubtedly worth it.
The GoPro HD Hero 2 is now in its second version and retails for a rather affordable $299. For that you get the very bare minimum – a camera with no LCD screen, a few shooting modes, roughly 2 hours worth of footage on a standard charge and some protective housings. You can then build up your collection by adding a Wi-Fi receiver/trigger, LCD screen, 3D shooting adapter and other accessories as you see fit.
If you’ve already taken the plunge and bought a GoPro then why not share some of your films and footage in the comments below. We’d love to hear how you use yours, what you think of it and of whether any of these films tickle your fancy!