POPS are the “Parachutists Over Phorty Society”, which tends to be well represented at dropzones and boogies wherever they go. Criteria for membership is to have done one skydive – a tandem counts as a skydive, as always – and be over forty years of age.
Saturday, October 19 – at Toogoolawah, Queensland, for the Skydive Ramblers “Equinox” boogie – I was conducting a briefing for a couple of jumpers intent on completing their first nude skydive safely. Manifest used the PA to see if I could meet a video commitment at two waiting planes for a formation load.”Yes” is the only answer to that question… Archie Jamieson had his camera, and offered me a choice of plane – a generous man indeed. I elected to take the Skyvan, we discussed breakoff, the doors closed, and away we went.
For a big job like this, careful planning is my watchword. Pre-empt it with lots of careful considerations. Discuss it. Dirt dive, a lot, watching the formation build – who is on aircraft heading, where are the congested quadrants, where is the sun likely to be, etc. And I take /lots/ of ground footage, looking to make a production afterwards.But instead of this style of preparation, I assembled my camera helmet on the way up… The good news is that at least a ground shot was taken – by a lady POP who remains nameless to me, but I’d like to see her credited – and forwarded by Andrew Snow. Onya Snowy
It was a beautiful thing to film.
This is easily my biggest video commission – and I’ll take this opportunity to publicly thank Archie for making it so easy for me. And there’s definitely beer in it, but 32 doesn’t go nicely into a carton, and I’ve decided to do it individually. So: POPS on the load, I owe you a beer. Demand it from me next time the bar is open. And thanks for the skydive.