Interview: Girls that love Drones – International Women’s Day 1 147

To celebrate women’s day all over the world, I decided to interview a few tech savvy girls that have a passion for drones.

 The sight of a female hobbyist in the drone community is very rare, so this is like a breath of fresh air. 

Here’s a short interview with 3 beautiful women that love to fly and enjoy playing with technology:

kathleen

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sally-french

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Let's start the interview with Kathleen

Let’s start the interview with Kathleen Kathleen Hickey loves exploration and is really passionate about the photography side of drones. She’s also a fan of racing as she’s built her own quad from scratch.

kathleen-racing-drone-dji
First, could you tell me what you are most passionate about when it comes to technology? Is it mostly drones? And what were the main selling points that got you in this beautiful hobby?​
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Paul Archer
Chief Gator
I'm passionate about what new technology opportunities, bring to women, and in education.

What first made me passionate about drones specifically was the photography and exploration factor.

I love the idea of stepping outside of your door and actually doing something. And even though you're still connected to technology, you're out in the world flying and discovering.
kathleen
Kathleen Hickey
drone lover, blogger
How do you view this apparent inclination for boys to pick hobbies like these and not girls?

You are the living proof that women can not only do as well as men, but even better in most cases.
portrait-paul-archer
Paul Archer
Chief Gator
When I learned more about it, I was fascinated by the actual technology, and build. I have a degree in English Literature.

I was told in school that girls were not as good in science and math as boys.

Now I'm able to work on race quads, and fix things for guys that don't build their own. I think that's powerful. I realized I am good at it. I do understand it. And I want other women to feel the same way.
kathleen
Kathleen Hickey
drone lover, blogger
Do you think the kids in this day and age are more privileged because of the existing technologies?

Is there any hope for the little girls of today to get as encouraged as boys to follow their passion?
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Paul Archer
Chief Gator
If drone technology was accessible as it is now when I was a kid, maybe I would have been an engineer or worked in aerospace. I hope drone technology will help kids use their natural curiosity to be involved in science, but in a fun way.
kathleen
Kathleen Hickey
drone lover, blogger
I really like your point of view and I agree that education will be highly influenced by the evolution of technology. I know there has been created some kickstarter project with drone kits. Those could help children understand how things work in a VERY fun way!
portrait-paul-archer
Paul Archer
Chief Gator

Could you also tell me what kind of drones do you fly on a regular basis?

DJI Phantom SE

This is one of the favorite drones of Kathleen
If drone technology was accessible as it is now when I was a kid, maybe I would have been an engineer or worked in aerospace. I hope drone technology will help kids use their natural curiosity to be involved in science, but in a fun way.
kathleen
Kathleen Hickey
drone lover, blogger

Meet Sally French

A passionate journalist who found her love for drones and saw their potential before the craze even started. She loves to travel and take beautiful pictures, and in her spare time she competes as an irish dancer! You can check out her website at TheDroneGirl.com

First, Can you tell us who you are in a couple of words?
portrait-paul-archer
Paul Archer
Chief Gator
I have been interested in drones from a hobby perspective since January 2013. I saw their potential in commercial applications, but since commercial use at the time was illegal, I started a blog to write about them instead.

I'm a journalist by trade, so blogging about drones was a natural fit. I'm continuing to learn more and more about them every day!
sally-french
Sally French
journalist and blogger at TheDroneGirl
Thinking about how fast the drone business evolved in the past couple of years makes my spine tingle.

Not many people can find a passion to write about and you evene coupled it with your journalism efforts.This is great!
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Paul Archer
Chief Gator

As I said, she’s very talented when it comes to taking pictures. And here’s the proof:

sally-french-photo-morocco
How did you get in the hobby in the first place and what motivates you to pursue this passion?
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Paul Archer
Chief Gator
I actually got into drones in very early 2013, when I realized I intended to graduate college in May 2013 and was one credit hour short.

The University of Missouri, where I was studying journalism, happened to offer a drone journalism course for the first time. It was pretty much the only class that fit into my schedule, so I signed up! I got hooked and it's taken off ever since.
sally-french
Sally French
journalist and blogger at TheDroneGirl
That was truly a great turn of events and an unknown opportunity. U never know how significant even little changes in your life can have. Can you tell us how you came up with the idea for the website and what plans do you have in the future for it?
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Paul Archer
Chief Gator
Back when I got interested in drones, there were so few blogs out there. I started it for myself to document my own photos and videos, and I never thought it would take off the way it did. My future is to keep reaching new readers.

There is so much misinformation out there on drones in terms of where and how you can and can't fly. I hope more people will think of drones as a vehicle for optimizing agricultural outputs and for protecting endangered animals, rather than as something that spies on you. By reaching more readers, I hope more people will learn the potential of this new technology.
sally-french
Sally French
journalist and blogger at TheDroneGirl

Yep, not gonna lie, her photos are damn great! Here’s another one from Morocco:

poor-kid-morocco-by-sally-french
What drones do you fly on a regular basis? Are they only for video purposes like Yuneec q500 and the Phantom or do you fly racing drones too?
portrait-paul-archer
Paul Archer
Chief Gator
I actually only own an original DJI Phantom. It's so crazy to me that I paid the same price for an original Phantom as you would pay today for a Phantom 4.

The Phantom is so outdated compared to the Phantom 4. The technology has come so far! Everything else I fly is just borrowed for reviews. I would LOVE to get into racing drones! I have worked a lot with them but never owned my own.
sally-french
Sally French
journalist and blogger at TheDroneGirl
Do you have any other tech passions besides Drone piloting and what would those be?
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Paul Archer
Chief Gator
Yes! I'm so glad you asked! Everyone always asks me about drones, but I have so many other hobbies! I'm classically trained in piano and competed nationally as an Irish dancer.

I also volunteer both with the YMCA and as a docent at a local history museum. Around the same time I got into drones, I also got into rock climbing. Drone + rock climbing videos are awesome, by the way!
sally-french
Sally French
journalist and blogger at TheDroneGirl
Wow! Never thought about mixing drones and rock climbing. That could result in such spectacular videos.
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Paul Archer
Chief Gator

Here, I found a very cool video made in this fashion. Thanks for the heads up!

Jessika Dronehart - The Rotor Girl

Jessika has been in this hobby even for even longer and she doesn’t plan to stop soon. She’s got some really interesting plans to unite the community under a unified goal to give something back to humanity. 

More on this below.. Note that she’s not affiliated with DJI in any way. But this is a great pic of her so here it is:

dji-dronehart
Jessika, what are you most passionate about when it comes to technology? Is it just flying quads or do you build them too?
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Paul Archer
Chief Gator
Well racing quads is really just only one aspect of what I am passionate about when it comes to this kind of technology.

I have been involved in several Search and Rescue groups over the last couple of years such as Airbears, and SWARM, who use drones to help locate and aid missing people and victims.
Jessika Dronehart
Rotor Girl
Wow, that's really amazing! I love your initiative! I think everybody will agree. This technology can truly be a blessing if used right.
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Paul Archer
Chief Gator
search and rescue
One of my goals is to bring a low cost SAR purpose built drone to the market, to compete against some of the higher cost systems out there. I think the idea of being able to give back to the communities we all live in by way of our favorite hobby is awesome, and I'd love to see more people getting involved.
Jessika Dronehart
Rotor Girl
I think it would be a great idea for the community to know your intentions and help you in your efforts. The low cost SAR drone could make for a great kickstarter project.
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Paul Archer
Chief Gator
I have been considering that a lot actually.
Jessika Dronehart
Rotor Girl
Can you tell us how you got in the hobby in the first place?
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Paul Archer
Chief Gator
It really all started for me when I was about 6 or 7 years old when I got a Traxxas Rustler for my birthday. My Dad never fixed anything for me unless he was teaching me how to fix it.

Within just a year or two from there I was running Nitro powered buggies, and planes and boats and everything. It was always just a super fun and engaging hobby that allowed me to spend as much time with my dad as possible.
Jessika Dronehart
Rotor Girl
drone girls power
Around ages 16-24 I kind of had less interested in RC But when multirotors started becoming a thing, I was instantly captivated once again, and dove right in.

And what Multirotors have done for the RC industry, is like what the internal combustion engine did for the auto industry... it attracted many great minds, captivated the public, drove up sales, and started getting people thinking again, about how can we continue to improve the technology.
Jessika Dronehart
Rotor Girl
You told me quite some stuff about your past and future plans. Can you give me a few details about what you fly right now?
portrait-paul-archer
Paul Archer
Chief Gator
Mostly I've been flying my Aircats lately.
They have:
2204 motors
5.5x4.5 props
Naze32
running Boris B 4S batts
They are really fun FPV racers that look sexy as hell too!
Jessika Dronehart
Rotor Girl
airhart-aircat-racing-drone
aircat
These being said, I want to thank both the girls for answering my questions and I'm waiting for other women in this hobby to show up and let people know about their existence.

It's a rarity, you know!? P.S: Happy International Women's Day to every girl out there!
portrait-paul-archer
Paul Archer
Chief Gator
I'm a big drone enthusiast, the owner of DronesGator.com and I also make weekly videos on my drone YouTube channel.

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