‘Copter sparks buzz about Staffin landmarks

STAFFIN landmarks, captured at sunrise by a drone, have played a starring role in a film which has sparked a major buzz on social media.

The Quiraing, Kilt Rock and Old Man of Storr feature prominently in the short film called “Beautiful Scotland”, which was produced by Edinburgh filmmaker John Duncan.

The drone, which was likened to a swarm of bees on its flights around Staffin, saw the area promoted to hundreds of thousands of people across the UK this week.

John visited Staffin back in May when he sent out the 1-kg-heavy drone, called a quadcopter, to shoot pictures for the three-minute video, which was promoted by the national tourism agencies VisitScotland and VisitBritain.

VisitScotland posted the film on its official Twitter account, which is followed by 97,000 people, and told them to: “Sit back & watch 3 minutes of WOW.”

VisitBritain did the same on its Twitter feed, which has 221,000 people, and said: “If this doesn’t want to make you visit Scotland we don’t know what will!”

Staffin was further promoted by the film being selected by the video platform Vimeo as a “staff pick” and shared it to the 151,000 people on its Twitter timeline.

John released the film to promote his aerial filming business after he received permission from the Civil Aviation Authority to fly the quadcopter, which can reach a height of up to 400-feet.

It costs about £1,500. However, wind or rain grounds the ‘copter so John knew he would have to keep a close eye on the Staffin forecast before letting it fly.

“I spent time biking round Skye years ago so when I bought the quadcopter I knew I had to visit,” he said. “The problem being that it can’t fly in medium/high winds or any rain so I knew it was going to be a challenge. Fortunately, as I work freelance, I was able to keep an eye on the weather forecast and leave at short notice.

“I saw a break in the weather and drove up, slept in the car by the Old Man of Storr and made my way up before the sun came up. I have literally never experienced anything like it. Then the next morning I got the shots at the Quiraing. The shot used wasn’t actually what I was going for, but I was still over the moon with what I got.”

John said the few onlookers who were up at that time in the morning thought the quadcopter sounded “like a swarm of bees”. And he has not ruled out a return trip to Trotternish with the drone and is confident there are “thousands of more incredible shots” which could be captured.

To watch the video, click here http://vimeo.com/100426447

For more details about John’s Skye filming and his other projects visit http://www.john-duncan.co.uk