Lonely Planet Writer

Watch this video reimagine South Korea as a dark, sci-fi world

The advancement of drone technology means that people all over the world can now view diverse destinations from new and compelling angles. With the addition of unique and creative visions from filmmakers, the world as we know it can be transformed into something from a science fiction universe, as is the case with a new video shot in South Korea.

Boryeong in South Korea filmed by Rufus Blackwell
The effect was created by stabilising and flipping the horizon in post-production. Image by Rufus Blackwell

Called Korean Mirrorworld, the video portrays Boryeong in South Korea as a dark and moody alternate dimension where the sky mimics the landscape and sea below. Shot by photographer and visual effects artist Rufus Blackwell, the idea came to him while he was on location filming a kitesurfing championship. “This was just experimental work. It was beautiful landscapes all around, quite unusual looking and the mist was amazing, I’ve never seen anything like that, so I just created it for fun,” Rufus told Lonely Planet Travel News.

The shoot saw Rufus experimenting with aerial motion-control time-lapses and using a selection of apps to pre-plan flightpaths for the drone, which can then follow an exact route. “Once it was finished I went back to the studio to play with the footage in post. While working with the time-lapse I tried stabilising the horizon and flipping it, and that’s how this effect was created.” The mood of the video is reminiscent of iconic movies such as Blade Runner or Inception, with scenes depicting an orange setting sun against a cityscape and a mirrored mountainous horizon looming over sweeping waves.

The film was shot in Boryeong during a kite surfing competition.
The film was shot in Boryeong during a kitesurfing competition. Image by Rufus Blackwell

The video soon garnered positive attention after Rufus shared in online, and it was chosen by the streaming platform Vimeo as a staff pick. This led to Rufus receiving over 400 emails in one day about the clip, which was subsequently nominated for a prize at the Los Angeles Drone Festival.

More of Rufus’ work including drone footage and visual effects is available at his official website.