About David’s video…

I studied Graphic Design in the UK which lead me to become a web designer for the first 10 years of my professional working life. Photography and video was always a passion of mine though so, when I moved to Queenstown seven years ago, I used the change as a means to propel me to do the things I always wanted to do. So I did more photography and I really got into video and motion graphics. I also wanted to try acting, so I got involved in local theatre and appeared in a few local productions and a short film. Snowboarding and mountain biking were also things that I hadn’t really done much of prior to living here, but now I am lucky enough to enjoy them quite frequently. 

Queenstown is awesome for that. It has all these micro communities within it that have all these inspirational people driving everything and they welcome and encourage anyone who wants to be involved. I love that. It’s a great place to be if you suffer seriously from FOMO like I do.

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The LUMA event is a great example. A few creative minds getting together, having a vision to put on something which they believed would be pretty cool and hoping others would think the same. That event had something for everyone. I spent at least five hours for each of the three nights there to make this video so I got the chance to hear what people were saying as they walked through the installations. They loved it. It had such a great community feel and it inspired me create my own little installation at home by chucking some fairy lights under my bed. Now I have a way of getting up for the toilet in the middle of the night that’s not only dreamy and beautiful, but it’s a practical way of avoiding all the crap I have lying on the bedroom floor. No longer do I need to employ the blinding intensity of the big light! Those fairy lights have seven different flash modes incidentally.

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I recently got into doing more time-lapse video because I had an unfortunate incident with my drone. Sounds a bit weird I know, but I get fixated with gadgets and fads. It stems from the FOMO and I believe it’s hereditary. My dad has loads of hobbies and when he gets into it, he really gets into it - like line dancing, that was a big one. For months all he would play was country music around the house and he went out and bought so many cowboy hats, shirts, strange tassel things and pairs of cowboy boots. He line danced at every possible public event he could: Christmas parties, birthdays, weddings… funerals. That’s like me, apart from the line dancing.

Being into video and gadgets is not a good mix financially speaking, as technology (and cameras especially) are developing so fast these days - no pun intended there. It was inevitable that I had to have a drone. I got too into it though and would only think about what I could do with the drone and not with my other camera equipment. They are amazing things and can get you some awesome shots but there are so many other ways to tell a story and drones are only a small part of that story telling. So when I crashed and destroyed my drone and lost it in the Shotover river it was like I was free from its clutches. I now couldn’t rely on it for making awesome videos, I had to do something else. Plus I was skint and couldn’t afford a replacement. So time-lapse video and photography has become my thing for the past couple of months.

You need a lot of patience to do time-lapses, I’ve learnt that much. It’s a lot of standing around just waiting for the camera to do its thing and then a lot of editing and exporting on the computer afterwards. Only when a sequence finally exports do you really know how things have turned out and at that point you could have literally spent hours on capturing only 10 seconds of final footage. If at that final stage you then realise you’ve got the focus wrong or something- well, it’s a tad disappointing to say the least!

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The LUMA project was my first proper time-lapse short film. I’ve learnt a lot from it. I have a better understanding of what works and what doesn’t and I don’t think this is perfect but I’m pleased with the result and what I’ve got out of it. I hope it portrays the same kind of feeling that people had when they attended in person. I just wonder what it would have looked like with a drone!

David Oakley

Digital Media Designer

Come find me on youtube, I need the subscribers!

Digital Media Designer David Oakley is based here in Queenstown, New Zealand. He was one of the many talented photographers and videographers who joined in the fun at LUMA Gardens, Queenstown’s first annual light festival earlier this month (3rd -5th June, 2016). 

The event drew more than 10,000 over the Queen’s Birthday Weekend. The crowds enjoyed the transformation of the Queenstown Gardens with installations by talented New Zealand artists such as Angus Muir, Mapping Mondays; curated sculptures by art gallery Toi O Tahuna and even an open air bar by The World Bar and an open air cinema by GDI.