UngoMongo
Topic Author
Posts: 139
Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2001 4:14 pm

Taking Photos Of Aircrafts.

Thu Aug 23, 2001 4:37 pm

Hi.

I recently joined the forum, but I've browsed around the site for a quite long time. I've read many topics and it's very useful information.
Recently I've started to take photos of aircrafts, but they turned out bad. So if anyone could give some information, on how you setup your camera. (shutterspeed e.t.c?) Maybe some good URLs too?

My equipment is a Canon EOS 300 with a Sigma 70-300 mm lens (f:4,0-5,6). I use Fuji Reala 100 films for best quality, allthough I've used other films (Kodak).

Thanks for any info.

Regards,  Smile
Kenneth
Becoming a dad is the greatest.
 
Guest

RE: Taking Photos Of Aircrafts.

Thu Aug 23, 2001 5:09 pm

Some pointers:

-use a slide film, I'm also a beginer and I too use to use Reala. Slides are easy to store and the image isin't subjected to colour and brightness adjustments during the printing process, as there is no printing process involved with slide film. So with slide film, what you shoot is what you get. I use Fuji Sensia II, which is fairly cheap to compared to the other favourite, which is Provia 100F. What ever film you use, be sure its 100 ISO.

-Use a fast shutter speed for action, 1/500 being optimal.

-Try using manual exposure/shutter/focusing as oposed to the camera doing all that If you are getting bad photos.

-Shoot on sunny days, make sure the sun is behind you. In such conditions the camera should be set at f8, 1/500 shutter for action or f11 with 1/250 for still shots. These setting work great for me.

-Try not using the lens at maximum zoom. The phots become prone to heat distortion and hand shake which are both present at long focal lengths.

-Try shooting taxing/parked aircraft before moving on to action. IT is not easy to pan and a/c going at 200km at first.

-If you are interested in submitting photos here, be prepered to invest in a film scanner. These scan both prints and negatives.

........These are some of the things I learned in the last year or so. If you can, put a link to one of your photos so that we can see what the problem(s) are and take it from there.
 
jwenting
Posts: 9973
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2001 10:12 pm

RE: Taking Photos Of Aircrafts.

Thu Aug 23, 2001 6:21 pm

heatdistortion happens at any focal length, you must learn to predict it and let the shot go if it is there. I've had it happen at 100mm or less, when two aircraft come in very close on a hot day.

For a 300mm lens, a shutterspeed of 1/350 is good to start. With experience you can get that down to 1/250 or even 1/180 over time.
When shooting (turbo)props, using a slower speed is almost essential to prevent frozen propellorblades. An airborne Fokker 50 with the props not spinning is a very bad thing  Smile/happy/getting dizzy and at best looks unnatural.
I wish I were flying
 
User avatar
hias
Posts: 337
Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2000 4:17 pm

RE: Taking Photos Of Aircrafts.

Thu Aug 23, 2001 6:36 pm

Hi there,

I agree with most JWenting wrote, but I would say as a beginner you should use the normal program on your camera and avoid shooting with less 1/250 sec. Generally you can say exposure = 1 / focal length.

When you are using 300mm then use an exposure of 1/300 sec. Don't set the exposure and f-stop manually !! Use the metering feature of the camera. I would suggest 100 ISO film. I am using Fuji Sensia II for more than 8 years now.

The next thing is keep on photographing. The first results may not turn out the way you wanted it. Practice and you will see how you pictures will get better.

To scan the slides you need a special film-/slidescanner to achieve the best scan results.

Here are some of my shots:


Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Mathias Henig



Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Mathias Henig



Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Mathias Henig



Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Mathias Henig



Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Mathias Henig



Make sure that you have the sun behind you, that's a must for good pictures. First try photographing aircraft on the stand and when you are more experienced you can go on with taxiing and fast moving aircraft.

Hope that helped.

Regards

Mathias
 
UngoMongo
Topic Author
Posts: 139
Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2001 4:14 pm

RE: Taking Photos Of Aircrafts.

Thu Aug 23, 2001 10:21 pm

Hi again.  Smile

Thanks a lot for the info so far. A new question is on my mind. You say, that a generally rule is : Max. shutterspeed = 1 / focal length. My question is, if the zoom is 50, is the shutter speed 1/50, or is it 1/300, because the lens has a maximum zoom of 300mm.

Thanks again.

Regards,  Smile
Kenneth
Becoming a dad is the greatest.
 
jwenting
Posts: 9973
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2001 10:12 pm

RE: Taking Photos Of Aircrafts.

Thu Aug 23, 2001 10:23 pm

Stunning as always Mathias. I find that to reduce reflections of the aircraft, having the sun to the side is also good.

To add a bit about scanning:
I have a hard time getting the scans to look like they should, so even though my negs or slides are as good as any up here (not all of them, obviously) most are thrown out for poor quality.
I hope this will get better over time, but consider this a reminder that a good shot does not guarantee you'll get it accepted here.
I wish I were flying
 
bodobodo
Posts: 545
Joined: Wed May 03, 2000 6:43 pm

RE: Taking Photos Of Aircrafts.

Thu Aug 23, 2001 11:49 pm

Re: Focal length

The general rule is 1/focal length where the focal length is the one that you are using at the time. If you are using your 70-300 (for example) lens at around 70 it would be 1/70 or 1/100 to be safe. If you are using it near full zoom it would be 1/300. However, this is a general rule to reduce the effects of camera shake and assumes that you are photographing a still object. When photographing a quickly moving object like an aircraft on takeoff at 300mm you may want to consider using a slightly faster shutter speed (eg. 1/500th) until you get proficient with your panning technique.

Cheers,
Felix

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