Kit posted a question about a photo in “Here There Be Dragons.” We also get a lot of verbal comments from friends about photography. Ranging from offers to do coffee table books to disdainful questions about which version of Photoshop we use.
All photography in Crosswinds is digital, with minimal post-production. We don’t even own Photoshop.
I was a film guy. Post-production, other than cropping, feels sinful.
A friend who worked at Kodak’s old film division said their last days were like nuclear nuclear plague in Terminator — co-workers were terminated by the hundreds as the film industry went extinct in the digital age.
How do you compete when you make dinosaur pet food? Your customers were wiped out.
Now the only film Kodak makes is X-ray film. My Mom got loads of near-expiry film for free, for her instamatic camera. She’s thrifty like that.
Another revelation will blow away the Gadget Guys with the big DSLR 12-1200mm bazookas:
Nearly all photography in Flying in Crosswinds is done with a point-and-shoot camera 😛
There are some photos by passengers with digital SLRs. But it’s just impossible to handle that artillery and fly an airplane at the same time.
The SLRs do have amazing depth of field versatility. You can freeze an instrument like the vertical speed indicator in razor sharp focus and blur everything beyond the alcohol compass.
Blurring the outside view is an oxymoron in most aerial photography. Nevertheless, with with an SLR you can knock yourself out. Here, Kevin proves that at least a part of my steep turns are perfectly level!
My point-and-shoot camera’s real inferiority complex is with resolution. Even with my 13 mega-pixel image processor, I couldn’t make out that UFO at the old Crow Valley gunnery and bombing range west of Clark.
Kevin solved the mystery for me with his Nikon DSLR.
With our point-and-shoot, though, Carlo and I can snap pictures with one hand.
We can also quickly shoot fleeting traffic (Carlo once captured a territorial eagle bent on chasing us away from his sky).
Would be tough to set up an SLR quickly for a shot like that.
Finally, our camera will actually fit in our Cessna 152 flight deck!
Can’t do that with a bazooka!
I use a Nikon P6000. Aside from the one-hand convenience, it has one, devastating advantage over many, many cameras.
It has GPS.
Yup, Global Positioning System. Its GPS receiver records the exact position from the earth-orbit GPS satellite constellation every time we shoot.
When we vainly admire our pictures on Picasa (freeware on the internet!), they are automatically overlaid on Google Earth with minute precision, literally.
It’s how we know what river we’re at. I take a picture, overlay that sucker onto Google Earth, and voila!
And you thought we navigated by looking at the names of towns on school roofs!
I love that P6000. I’m a Nikon guy, anyway. I still have a Nikon FM dinosaur in a drawer.
There was a time when Canon’s lenses were ground and blown by Nikon. I used to tweak the Canon guys with this little factoid.
So I wondered when folks bought Nikon cameras and then used third-party lenses like Vivitar or Tamron. Nikon’s superiority in the 1970s was in lenses — we bought Nikon’s lenses, and then had to buy the Nikon camera body because it was the only one you could use with those lenses.
But equipment is not the real arena in photography. The best amateur photography I’ve seen was my Dad’s. He had a Leica IIIf, circa 1939.
No TTL, plain viewfinder, hand-held light meter. In the days when the highest film speed was ASA 64, his photography was pure magic. Proof that the most vital piece of equipment was two inches behind the viewfinder.
Kit, the photo was shot at 6,500 feet. Above the haze layer, the sky is almost painfully blue.
The purple tinge in the clouds is either a white balance artifact from our monitors or a phaser blast from the neutral zone.
Posted from Chicago, June 1, 2009