Jakbar From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 442 posts, RR: 27 Reply 1, posted (8 years 2 months 2 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 1214 times:
(j/k...I'm just jealous)
Here's my recommendation for you: BRING LOTS OF SUNBLOCK. I was down there in March several years ago, and it was friggin' hot as hell standing out there all day waiting for planes. But, thankfully, the Sunset Beach Bar sells cold........water and soda.
As for other shooting locations besides the beach, there are plenty of accessible locations around the airport perimeter. Since you've got some time, use it to explore the area. Check out some of the pictures from SXM that are deeper in the a.net database and you'll see some insane photos taken from places other than the beach. I never had the time to go explore, but I wish I did. It's very easy to get around the airport perimeter, and I have never heard of a single person ever being harassed or questioned by anyone. However, just don't do anything stupid that you wouldn't do here in NYC (i.e., such as parking a rental car in a no parking zone on the side of a road).
Here's some ideas for pictures that I had been thinking about, even if others have done them before: (1) head-on departure shots from the other end of the airport; (2) departure shots from the mountain on the other side of the airport (this has been done, but there are so few pictures from this insane angle); (3) departure shots with the plane against the mountain background; (4) close-up touchdown shots from the beach; (5) shots of planes over the beach, taken from the water; (6) shots from the hotel(s) that line the edge of Maho Bay. I've never had the opportunity to do anything like this, but there are these possibilities and many more that you can choose from. Don't be put off by the recent threads by people bitching and moaning about how SXM shots are boring...those people are losers and don't know what the hell they're talking about. SXM is a fantastic place, with many different angles available for photography. You are going to love your trip to paradise!
BIGDEN From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 147 posts, RR: 2 Reply 6, posted (8 years 2 months 2 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 1201 times:
There are some holes at the top of the fence on the 27 end suitable for long shots of 09 departures. You will need a long lens.
The sunset is just about right for creative departures from 09 as well.
Drive to the new tower and walk the perimeter of the fence. With a 300 MM lens you can get some nice touchdown shots.
De-planing and the drive to the terminal also provide ramp shot opportunities if your gear is ready. The security guys will not rush you too extremely.
If you have breakfast at MARY'S BOON Hotel on the south side of the runway they will allow you to visit their little observation deck for TO shots, Have a longer lens, the light is right at 10 A.M.
The gate at the North side of the runway by the Red Cross office on Simpson Bay Rd. has wide bars good for taxi shots in the late afternoon.
You never know what may arrive on 09 or how low they might be, so any time spent at the Sunset Beach Bar in valuable before 9 A.M. or after 1 P.M.