DroneUp Callsign: samaramedia
Badges: Cinematic Pilot, DJI Expert, DJI Pro, Insurance Verified, Part 107 Certified, Drone Registration, DJI Intermediate, Daylight 107.29
John Woike recently flew a series of flights for a mission with Berard Transportation in Stamford, CT. Following these missions, he sat down with us to discuss his background as a drone pilot, and his thoughts on working with DroneUp.
Prior to his career as a drone pilot, John spent 25 years as a photojournalist and a former staff photographer with the Hartford Courant newspaper in Connecticut. His journalism background allowed the ability to deliver quality visual content for advertising, websites, promotions, and a variety of multimedia platforms. He couples photojournalist talent with mechanical and technological skills, which allows him to provide data collection application in the construction and industrial fields.
John’s foray into the use of drones started in 2011 building and flying a fleet capable of carrying anything from a GoPro to a small DSLR, and he continues to hone, grow and improve his aerial video and photography talents. During the 333 days, and after spending some time flying a Piper Cub, he was glad to see Part 107 come to fruition. His flight school experience gave him an appreciation of the National Airspace System (NAS), and he quickly became an FAA Remote Pilot.
In 2016 he opened Samara Media, LLC his own aerial drone photography & video service company, which was not a “faint of heart jump”. Before switching over to drone piloting full-time in 2018, he made efforts to integrate the use of drones in his local news reporting with some limited success.
This mission was John’s first with DroneUp. The mission itself required a level of cinematic expertise and was highly technical as it involved the navigation of high tension wires, live wires over train tracks, and operating in between tight spaces to capture Berard’s requirements.
After spending some time getting used to the DroneUp app to interface on the job, he felt that it provided him with a service that was both straightforward and thorough. From his acceptance of the mission to the submission of deliverables, the communication he received was first-rate and relayed that the platform is “nothing but a revelation”.
Stay tuned for more installments of our Drone Jobs series, as we highlight some of our best pilots and the missions they fly.