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Johnny Lo wasn’t always a mellow, savor-the-moment kind of guy. Well, it’s not that he wasn’t; it’s just that he was more focused on catching his next racing-fueled adrenaline fix than smelling the roses. But just over two years ago, that changed.

Johnny’s wife became pregnant with their baby boy, and Johnny’s outlook began to change. He slowed down a bit and began to focus on capturing the importance of the moment. This is also when he began developing a knack for photography, using a GoPro to bridge his new passion with his fast-paced nature.

“Seeing my son grow up, I realized life wasn’t about chasing the big moments, but about capturing the small ones,” he says. “They grow up so fast, I feel like the only thing I can do is to chase those moments and keep them, because they are gone before you know it.”

“What ultimately inspires me to create content is passion,” Johnny went on to explain. “Passion for the arts and nature. Passion to advance and accelerate my knowledge for videography. Passion to create something that can be passed on when I'm gone. Passion to learn and share with other likeminded individuals. Passion for life.”

We couldn’t help but notice Johnny’s incredible skills—he is actually one of our top GoPro Award recipients, submitting regularly from his home base in Taiwan. After asking him to join the GoPro family as an advocate, we wanted to make his dreams to take his family on an unprecedented adventure of a lifetime come true, too. Cue the #DreamReal campaign and the GoPro social team. At first Johnny was thrilled, but then he thought of a million reason to turn down the opportunity…the timing, family visits, work, etc.

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“It wasn’t until I calmed down that I realized this was happening—my dreams were coming true; this is a once in a lifetime opportunity. I will put everything on hold if I have to. My family is coming with me and that’s all I need.”

Johnny originally wanted to capture Aurora Borealis (the infamous green flash), but the lights proved to be fleeting during his family’s adventure in New Zealand, so instead, Johnny fine-tuned his skills to the test. The following are the top three lessons learned.

What new camera tips and tricks did you learn?

For this trip, night photography was a technique I needed to learn in order to capture the best possible photos of the Auroras. …  I learned how to properly calibrate the camera for different lighting conditions.

  • The darker the environment, the longer the shutter needs to stay opened.
  • To create clearer images, the ISO limit must be set lower.
  • Sharpness levels were best left alone and let the camera show its potential.

What was your favorite moment captured, and what settings were you using?

The family night photo at the church was my favorite picture captured on our trip. The settings for the camera were:

  • Night lapse mode
  • 30 sec exposure
  • ISO800
  • WB native
  • GoPro color
  • Sharpness low

What makes this footage different than any you’ve captured before?

On this trip, I discovered that facing the GoPro directly toward the sun created the most glorious footages during sunset and sunrise. The use of natural lighting for videography is always the best choice.

Also drone shots are just epic!


Check back on GoPro’s Facebook page and The Inside Line  for more #DreamReal stories to come, because in the words of Johnny they bring, “unforgettable, life-changing adventures.”