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Sunday, December 18, 2011

Antarctica by Air - According to a Boilermaker

Photograph by David (Horse) Barringhaus

Taking aerial photgraphs from any aircraft can be a photographers nightmare. Windows are usually scratched,dirty, have reflections in them, oddly shaped, the light source can be difficult to take control of. But when you get told to go off and take photographs of penguin rookeries 4 hours away by aircraft, you'll pretty much jump at the chance. So armed with my 3 cameras and alot of optimism, 5 other photographers, and 2 pilots we did our bit for science.

Photograph by David (Horse) Barringhaus
Some of my tips are:
1. Get a seat well away from wings, fixed wheels or skis and engines, especially if you are in a plane with an under wing, not so bad when in a twin otter with the wing over. When in a helicopter get the front seat as its has a much better view; and

2. Never use flash;and

3. Set your apperture at somewhere between F11 and F16. I usually use apperture priority. Watch your shutter speed. Keep it as high as possible. This depends alot on ground speed and how much shake you are getting from the aircraft; and

4. Look at setting your expossure compensation 1/3 to 2/3 stops under. Check your white balance setting; and

5. I use mostly a wide angle zoom of 24 - 70mm. This will obviously depend on altitudes of your flight; and

6. Watch how much time you spend with your eyes stuck looking through your view finder. With the constant rocking and jumping around, banking etc, you can become sick as in motion sickness.

7. I use 3 cameras only because Antarctica is a harsh place on DSLR cameras. Primary camera is a Canon 5D Mk11, second camera is a Canon 400D, and third an Olympus 8100 Tough.

8. Always carry extra batteries as the cold will drain the batteries quicker. My Canon 5D Mk11 has a battery grip with 2 batteries.

These are only some of my thoughts and really you need to assess the days light conditions to suit. I
See Air Antarctica Pics at my facebook album.
For images that are for sale in print,canvas, framed print and acrylic go to my online store

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