It is a long time ago that I last flew in a light aircraft. So to be commissioned to take aerial photographs of a property in Port Elizabeth was really exciting.
The arrangements were made with Mr John Huddlestone (aircraft owner) and Mr Mitchell Hill (pilot) and we were all set. We decided on using the Skyranger (see http://helicoptercharter.co.za/skyranger/ ) due to it's slow speed as well as the ability to remove the door. The weather prediction was accurate (for once) and we had a beautiful calm day.
The Two Seat Skyranger with Owner and PilotJohn Huddlestone (L) and Mitchell Hill (R)
After completing the commissioned shoot we flew out to Swartkops River Mouth and then back along the coast to Cape Recife. From there we flew over the Soccer Stadium and a few other landmarks before heading back to the airport.
Some sample images:
Baakens ValleySettlers Park and the Baakens River
Cape Recife Coastline and Lighthouse, South AfricaAerial view of the lighthouse and beach at Cape Recife, Port Elizabeth
Aerial View of Soccer Stadium and LakeAerial view of the soccer stadium and lake in Port Elizabeth, South Africa
Swartkops River MouthAerial view of the Swartkops River Mouth and Estuary
Some tips for aerial photography:
- Plan the shoot - have everything ready before takeoff. It is very difficult to change memory cards etc while flying and opportunities will be missed if you are fiddling with your camera.
- Use a high shutter speed - this will help eliminate the effects of vibration from the aircraft.
- Use a relatively small aperture to get a good depth of field. f11 or f16 should be fine
- Choose a calm day when it is clear or when the cloud cover is even and overhead.
- Fly when the sun is directly overhead unless the dramatic effect of long shadows is a requirement.
- Choose an aircraft where the window or door can be open. You don't want to shoot through glass or perspex that will degrade image quality