“Who wouldn’t want a flying camera?!” said photographer Edward Fink with his Phantom 3 quadcopter in Phalen Park in St. Paul on Wednesday, April 27, 2016. “The movements are so smooth — because they’re controlled by a computer, not a human. My dad was an amateur photographer and it would blow his mind,” said Fink. Recently he shot First Avenue and Paisley Park during Prince mourning. He specializes in 360-degree panoramas taken at ground level or in the air via drones. Jean Pieri/Pioneer Press
CHANHASSEN, Minn. — Edward Fink’s heart was in his mouth as he launched his drone into the air above Prince’s Paisley Park, the Chanhassen complex mobbed by mourners soon after the beloved performer’s passing.
Fink wanted to be respectful and safe. He did not send the drone directly over the crowd but off to one side as he sought to take one of his trademark aerial 360-degree news shots of the scene.
Still, with police everywhere, Fink feared the worst. Would he get arrested once spotted on his grassy knoll, half-obscured by trees? Would his drone, heaven forbid, be shot down?