Auto-Drone-Technography

Authors: Julia Hildebrand*, Drexel University
Topics: Qualitative Methods, Communication, Cultural Geography
Keywords: camera drone, affect, auto-ethnography, technography, mobile methods, qualitative methods, video
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/7/2019
Start / End Time: 3:55 PM / 5:35 PM
Room: Congressional A, Omni, West
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The camera drone opens up new aerial ways of seeing, moving, and relating. As such, the drone gaze makes for a worthwhile addition to the mobile methods toolbox, serving as both a practical and metaphorical lens for qualitative research into physical, corporeal, virtual, communicative, and imaginative mobilities. I concentrate on the example of drone-logs, the juxtaposing of sky video with ground audio, as an innovative – technographic – approach for video ethnography and elicitation. As a hybrid of multiple technologies and techniques, drone-logs can sharpen the focus onto fleeting, slippery, sensory, and kinaesthetic motions, notions, and emotions. Ultimately, I argue for the value of an "auto-drone" view for researchers to consider their own affective mobilities and geographies within the research process and acknowledge their respective relational emplacements from a distanced and detached top-down perspective.

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