Monday, January 28, 2019

Is my pilot safe? - Part 3

The last two blog posts have passed along my perspective on how important the pre-flight briefing is for both the pilot and photographer.  Nothing less than a commitment to flying as a team will provide a baseline for safe execution when airborne.  But there are a lot of things that can still go wrong, even with the best of briefs!

As aviation photographers, we should be prepared to sit through, and if asked, participate in the post-flight debrief.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Is my pilot safe? - Part 2

My previous post passed along a way to evaluate your prospective air to air pilot via their brief.  For all of my 20+ years in aviation, the flight brief has been my most critical point of evaluation, and often a last point before engine start where everyone concerned could say "I don't think we're ready for this flight, today."

a cold day photographing the Movie Memphis Belle air-to-air
But aviation photography is different than regular formation flying, and as a result the airborne team has an additional member - YOU, the photographer!

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Is my pilot safe? - Part 1

I often get frustrated with "big-name" aviation photographers who talk about securing that "first air-to-air" and give advice without actually passing along anything concrete in their blog posts.  Recently one of these individuals decided to pontificate on how to secure that first air to air photo mission safely.
Let me paraphrase what he said:

“Take some ground photos - make a print – give it to a pilot – because of that you will meet and get to know them – then you can determine if they are safe to fly with.”

Sadly, that leaves a lot up to interpretation.  If we are assuming that you are new to aviation, and specifically air-to-air photography, how will you evaluate this prospective air-to-air photo pilot as you “get to know them”?

Monday, January 14, 2019

Access vs. Trespassing

(or how to straddle the barbed wire fence
by Ed Simmons

Ever since seeing the "Omega Man" with my folks at the drive in the 70s, I've been fascinated with dark themed/ abandoned locations. I like to shoot old buildings/ abandoned warehouses, and basically anything that looks like it belongs in the zombie apocalypse.  There are lots of cool pages and venues for this type of photography, and most of them share a common set of ground rules, one being "Don't ask the photographer for the location or for their access" (if it's not a well known spot.)

In other words, get your own access / find your own shoots.

Friday, January 4, 2019

The Great Yellow Vest Deception

A few days ago, some comments were traded on social media that led to the Vice President of the International Society for Aviation Photography (ISAP) publically asking me "what about the yellow vest offends your sensibilities?"  What a great question - assuming that it is the vest which offends me instead of the conduct of those wearing the yellow vests.
ISAP photographers at NAF El Centro behind the "Line of Death"

Thursday, January 3, 2019

The Return of the Blog

If I was going to subtitle this post (as I do in my other blogs) it would be:

Hold onto your (floppy) hats, photographers!  We're in for a bumpy ride!

a pyrotechnics specialist pauses to record the event for posterity

Thursday, October 19, 2017

The "New" Lightroom CC - and why you hate it!

TA-4J image edited on LR CC - Win10 and Android
Let me warn you now – this blog post will probably anger 95% of Lightroom users.  The other 5% won’t be mad because they are too dense to realize I am insulting them as well…  So let me begin.