Kitty Peters is the founder and chief cinematographer of Atola Visuals, a video production and marketing agency that shoots projects from festival montages to clothing to tech, always striving to capture beauty and tell inspirational stories through the visual medium. Peters grew up in the Chicagoland area and obtained her degree in Cinematography from Columbia College before moving to San Francisco to steep her creative work with its hustle, its breathtaking views, and the newest tech.
Are you a filmmaker who’s new to drone photography? Looking for an expert’s advice on tools and tricks that will improve your mobile videography skills? With the Atola Visuals YouTube channel, Peters’ mission is to help you find the cameras and gear that get the job done — and done beautifully — whether you’re a traditional photographer or hybrid creator.
Below you’ll read about the wide variety of video gear Peters reviews. Among the many photography tools she’s discovered recently, the LaCie DJI Copilot enables Peters to maintain a laptop-free workflow while shooting on location. It lets the user load media files to it directly from their USB camera or an SD card, and also to view, organize, and manage media files from a phone or tablet. It even lets you charge a phone from its internal battery.
“When I’m filming out in the field, I don’t really want to go back home or go to a coffee shop to start looking at and transferring footage,” Peters says.
Watch the video to see Peters in action, then read below to learn about how she reviews gear and why she’s using the LaCie DJI Copilot to help with her drone photography workflow.
Below, Peters explains in her own words how she makes sure she’s giving YouTube viewers useful tips by seeking out products she knows can personally help her:
I want to help people find what photography tools are the best and most reliable
I’m the owner and chief cinematographer of Atola visuals. We not only do social video for clients, but we also make social videos for our YouTube channel where we do a bunch of camera gear reviews. I also love gear.
I started a YouTube channel because I wanted to inform other people about what tools I’ve found that are best and reliable. Because I know for myself, I spend a lot of years just saving up for that one piece a gear, and I know troubleshooting gear is not very fun. I spent a long time doing a lot of research looking at other people’s YouTube channels, just to try to get the best creative tools for my money.
I review everything a mobile videographer will need to stay creative. Drones. Gimbals. Lights. Monitors. Camera bags. Cameras. Lenses. Microphones. And accessories.
I spend hours or days researching, then test gear in the field
When I’m deciding what tools to explore in a new episode, it’s usually gear that I want myself. And when I look for a certain piece of gear, I do a lot of research. I can spend hours or days researching, compare each product to other brands, then I’ll pick the best option for me — which is also something that my audience tends to appreciate. I look at myself as the bridge between the information and the consumer making a decision about what to buy.
So I feel like I have a huge responsibility, because people are looking to me when I review something that’s important to them. I hope that my findings really help other people — because that one tool can help you really foster your creativity.
My theme is mobile shooting. I’m a hybrid shooter, which is what most of my audience is as well — we’re videographers and photographers. So when I choose gear it’s usually something that I would use personally.
I love San Francisco because it has the best scenery and lighting to shoot the perfect content. One of the ways I gain trust with my viewers is by going out in my element and testing the gear that I review. It’s one thing to show what test footage a tool can help me create, but it’s another thing to actually show me using the gear itself.
I put each piece of gear through rigorous testing indoors outdoors and see what the gear can do. I’ll give pros and I’ll also give cons — so I’m not just portraying something in the best light, I’m also letting people know what’s wrong with it.
How to backup your drone files while carrying less gear
A new product that I discovered that really helps my mobile photography workflow is the LaCie DJI Copilot.
When I first saw it at a trade show I instantly fell in love with it because it just fit me. When I’m out in the field, I don’t really want to go back home or go to a coffee shop and start looking at and transferring footage. The DJI Copilot allows me to take my SD card from my camera or my drone, plug it in there, copy footage, and also review it.
The big thing that’s going to sell this product for people like me is that it’s laptop-free. I don’t have to bring card readers out or bring a laptop. I only bring a backpack most of the time when I’m shooting. I like to stay mobile and compact. This allows me to bring less gear.
And it still fits that LaCie Rugged brand — those drives I’ve been using for years. It’s really familiar because it’s part of that LaCie family, but also brings in new technology.
It’s streamlined my workflow and makes everything more convenient
It gives me peace of mind to back up stuff in the field, where I don’t have to carry my laptop or bring dongles. Hard drives are that piece of gear that are under-appreciated and underrated. It’s where all your work is stored. So I feel really confident that I have all my stuff backed up several times, because with this gear it’s really easy to back it up in the field. When I get home I transfer it to my main editing drive, which is the LaCie 2big Dock.
LaCie continues to push the boundaries, and with the DJI Copilot, it’s really streamlined my workflow and makes everything more convenient. I’ve been using LaCie products for years now, even when I first started videography, so I’m really excited to see what they come out with next.