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clickhappy
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The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 2:46 pm

I did not use to think so. While 'the perfect picture' might be a subjective topic, for me it can be broken down like this:

Lighting
Subject
Scenery
Angle
and of course the actual results of the shutter drop.

Another intangible criteria, again IMO, is how hard it was to get the shot, IE how did you make it happen.

A couple of weeks ago I was fortunate enough to take, what in my mind is, the perfect airplane picture.


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Photo © Royal S King



A lot of work went into arranging this shot, and of this particular aircraft. It all has to do with a stuffed animal my mom bought my youngest daughter a while back, that she has become attached to, and I wanted to surprise her with this picture.

Have any of you ever had a rewarding experience where you took, by your definition, the perfect picture?
 
timdegroot
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The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 3:11 pm

Don't think any picture can be called perfect but by my definition I feel this one of mine has always come closest.


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JRadier
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The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 3:55 pm



Quoting TimdeGroot (Reply 1):
Don't think any picture can be called perfect

Considering 'Beauty is in the eye of the beholder' a perfect picture does indeed not exist.

Take for example Royal's shot. To him it is the perfect shot because of the hard work, the memories and who knows what else. To me, it is (and I don't want to offend you Royal) 'just another side-on'. A good one, but a regular side-on and to be honest, it doesn't give me a fuzzy feeling inside.

For that reason (and the reason that I don't have 'my perfect photo' on Airliners, if at all) I won't post a shot  Wink
For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and ther
 
champfence
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The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 3:56 pm

Royal,

I'd love to hear the "story" behind this shot. Two years in the making, must've been a big deal. If you'd be kind enough to share!

BRB
 
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airkas1
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The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 3:57 pm



Quoting JRadier (Reply 2):
For that reason (and the reason that I don't have 'my perfect photo' on Airliners, if at all) I won't post a shot

Smoesjes!

(bad excuse!)
Airliners.net Crew - Photo Screener
 
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ThierryD
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The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 5:22 pm

I've got a few shots that I'd consider almost perfect considering your first 5 points; if I include the planing criteria though, it would be this one:


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Photo © Planecatcher



It's one of my personal Top5 shots I've on A.net and it is so as it took some luck for the plane to arrive here and than my planing which worked out just right to get the desired result.
I sometimes ask myself if the result would have been even better with turning props but in the end I think not.

Cheers,

Thierry
"Go ahead...make my day"
 
krizz
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The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 5:53 pm

Time to post my personal number one shot being far from perfect, but can perfection be reached?

The low winter light combined with the right angle due to the uncommon taxi-procedure of this Fokker makes it special for me. I also like the frozen propellor blades and the tight crop.


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Photo © Kris Van Campfort

 
RCoulter
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The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 6:08 pm

My top shot is also my personal favorite because I had tried for 2 days to get the shot and tried a few different settings and finally nailed it. I would have preferred a bit more smoke and prop blur, but that's why I agree with Royal about no "perfect" picture.  Smile

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JRadier
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The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 7:01 pm



Quoting AirKas1 (Reply 4):
Smoesjes!

(bad excuse!)

Yes, and no. I honestly feel that several of my best shots are not on a.net (yet)
For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and ther
 
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airkas1
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The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 7:02 pm

I just meant that you should post it (whether or not it's on A.net).
Airliners.net Crew - Photo Screener
 
damien846
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The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 7:21 pm

I think it's maybe more about...right place right time?

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photopilot
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RE: The Prefect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 9:05 pm

Well, and not trying to be self-promoting, these two of mine are probably my best efforts and as close to perfect (in my mind) that I can take.

The first is from my personal collection of me flying a Grob Single Astir CS-77 Glider. It took 6 months over the winter non-flying season to imagine the shot, design the custom boom and camera bracket, then wait for just the perfect weather (no heat haze) to get the shot. It was shot on film, Fuji RVP 50 (35mm). I don't think I've seen as dramatic or unusual a glider photo IMHO.

The second was shot of the new Bombardier Q400 on a test flight over Witchita Kansas. It also was shot on Fuji RVP 50 but on a Hasselblad in 2~1/4" size (6 x 6cm). It was calculated in advance that it had to be shot at 1/250 in order to get the correct amount of prop blur to keep the marketing folks happy. They still wanted to show the new 6 bladed prop, but with enough blur to show motion. Oh, and in an absolute treat, I got to shoot this assignment from the stripped out tail gunners turret (glass removed) of a Mitchell B-25 WWII bomber. I've seen a 15-foot-wide print of this image and you can count the rivet heads on the panels. Oh, and in an absolute bit of amazing LUCK, note the strobe on the tail. It strobed at the exact 1/250 second that the shutter was open. Gee... I'd sooner be lucky than good!! 


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Photo © Stephen Liard
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Photo © Stephen Liard



[Edited 2009-08-07 14:09:02]
 
spencer
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 9:44 pm

Certainly shows what we all consider to be near perfect photos. I love a plug so here's my personal "perfect" photos.
This one is one of my personal favs for many reasons.

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Photo © Spencer Wilmot


Then this one for the use of thirds and the time of day.

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Photo © Spencer Wilmot


This one for it being taken handheld whilst it's also a nice ac and BW.

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Photo © Spencer Wilmot


This one for the manual set up prior to taking it, freezing the ac and exposing it nicely.

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Photo © Spencer Wilmot


And finally  Wink this one for obvious reasons.

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Photo © Spencer Wilmot


Now, if I was to chose a perfect photo from those, then personally I'd go with the last one. No definitive reason, I guess I just think with how I planned it, set up and woke up (!) and just got it all together, makes it the shot for me.
Spence.
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Stil
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 10:15 pm

Hi.

I think most of the times and if you make self criticism enough, you'll find out the pictures you take would have been improved by such a small thing as a bigger depth of field, or a slightly different exposure time.
It happens to me all the time, but this one went very close to perfection:


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Photo © Stil



This time I felt as if a great opportunity was going to happen, so I asked the jetway driver to illuminate the dark side of the aircraft as I watched the mist coming in. I conducted the jetway light to compensate the white ramp light on the left and waited for the mist to burst into the frame. I felt like a orchestra conductor this time.
I'm sure some may rightly think it's not perfect, but I still don't know how could I have make it better.

Stil
....... Gueropppa! ......
 
whisperjet
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Fri Aug 07, 2009 11:05 pm

I know that some people (mainly those who are out for new registrations) have certain requirements for a perfect shot, something like:
- 90° sideon
- registration must be visible
- blue sky with a few clouds
- neutral light (no morning or evening light)
- approach shot to have the gear visible and nothing obstructed by grass etc

I personally don't think that there are real criterias for a perfect shot, I rather prefer perfect shootings with some nice folks around  Smile

Stefan
Nobody is perfect - not even a perfect fool.
 
gavinconroy
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sat Aug 08, 2009 7:00 am

I don't consider this to be perfect but is as close as I have got.
The light was not quite right but the formation flying was really something to watch.
It took quite a while to get this one photo.

Around 30 people were involved in either flying or getting the aircraft in the air and working with great people is very satisfying.

When we took off if was a bit bumpy and I really didn't think we were going to get a formation this good but the boys worked very hard and we got it.


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Photo © Gavin Conroy

Never stop believing.
 
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walter2222
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sat Aug 08, 2009 8:01 am

Hi there,

My perfect picture is not on here, it only exists in my memories... When I was in training (back in 1976), flying a SF-260M for a navigation flight, a Belgian Air Force F-104G Starfighter slowed down (gear and flaps extended) and joined up for a couple of seconds to greet my instructor and then flew a circle around us before continuing his mission. If only that had been in the digital age, even with a point and shoot that would have made my perfect picture...but unfortunately, we were not allowed to take a camera with us during training  Sad

One of my most pleasing images - for me - on here (just personal feeling, not considering it as a perfect shot) is this one:

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Photo © Walter Van Bel


It was shot during my first ever visit to Meiringen, on the day prior to the Axalp-demo. We could hear the jet noise when the aircraft left the caverns in the mountain, but at first, they were not visible. Then, just when they drove onto the taxiway, there was this short moment with extreme light condition and lots of heat haze, when I took this shot. I am still glad that screeners accepted it  cloudnine 

Best regards,

Walter
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aviopic
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sat Aug 08, 2009 8:01 am

This must be the photographers paradox.
On one hand I am trying to get the "perfect" shot and on the other I never hope to make it as it would be the end of a hobby.  Sad

Quoting AirKas1 (Reply 9):
I just meant that you should post it (whether or not it's on A.net).

Like this Jurgen  Wink

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The truth lives in one’s mind, it doesn’t really exist
 
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ghajdufi
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sat Aug 08, 2009 8:29 am

Very interesting topic and it's always nice to hear/read about stuff like this from the hotshots.
I'd say no matter how much planning and preparation you're doing at the end you must be lucky too. And that added luck (a special effect/light/cloud formation/weather etc) or just something you have no control over will make your shot a perfect one. My brain loves colour, to me a perfect shot is where the colour balance is pleasing.
Your photos are like your children, you will always find them perfect.
 
javibi
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sat Aug 08, 2009 9:53 am

Quoting Clickhappy (Thread starter):
The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

I do not think so (fortunately). But it is a nice goal to pursue.

Quoting JRadier (Reply 2):
Considering 'Beauty is in the eye of the beholder'

I agree with Jurgen's post; no offence meant, but although some of the shots you guys have posted are IMO real gems, others, if they were mine, would have ended in the waste bin; perfect is such an elusive and personal concept.

Regarding my own work, I have the impression that no matter what type of shot I try there is someone out there that has done it better, so I do not think I have ever got even a bit close to perfection.

Nice thread, in any case.

Cheers,

j

[Edited 2009-08-08 02:54:49]
 
wilco737
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sat Aug 08, 2009 10:07 am

Perfect shot? What exactly is perfect? Clickhappy named some things where you can say if something is perfect or not.
For me it is the moment, the motive, the possibility, the chance to take a picture and then got a good enough quality to actually look at it and say: "Yes, you did it."

This one is one of my favorites as the conditions were difficult and it came out a lot better than I thought.


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Photo © Wilco737



This one I really do like as the angle was special. I was sitting in the cockpit and waiting for the departure, then the mechanic came up and told us: We have to change a tyre, will take about 30 minutes. So I took the camera and walked around the airplane and took a lot of pictures of our mighty MD11F. Then I saw the ladder there next to the wing and I thought: "YES" This is the result:


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Photo © Wilco737



And last, but not least. I like this because of the atmosphere. It was early in the morning in ALA, we landed right before the other MD11F with our colleagues on board. The mecahnic walked out to them because in ALA you have to switch off the engines and being towed into the position. It shows how small we human beings sometimes are compared to huge things we built or the huge mountains in the background. You can see only the lower part of the mountains, but they are pretty high...


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Photo © Wilco737



I guess 'the' perfect picture does not exist, but something which really makes you think: "This is awesome and I was lucky to have the camera ready and the motive was just perfect."

wilco737
 
photopilot
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sat Aug 08, 2009 11:47 am



Quoting Whisperjet (Reply 14):
- 90° sideon
- registration must be visible
- blue sky with a few clouds
- neutral light (no morning or evening light)
- approach shot to have the gear visible and nothing obstructed by grass etc

You've just successfully described the world's most boring photograph IMHO. But then again, that's why we're all different.
 
mat1979
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sat Aug 08, 2009 2:55 pm

My perfect shot is perfect because it was taken during a flight i am very happy to have made.

I was in Tahiti in Polynesia and after a check-ride rented a PA28, and flew to Bora Bora with a passenger friend. A 90 minutes trip mostly over the pacific ocean at FL105. Then 2 days later return to Tahiti after some scenic overflight of atolls.

Bora Bora is for french people the quintessential paradise holiday island. The name sounds like magic.

And for me, having flown there, landed and parked my aircraft next to some Biz jets and ATRs, was not far from being perfect.



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This shot is also close to my heart. I was in a desolate area of Argentina, and found a guy to drive me up in the Cordillera for the day. Reaching this laguna at more than 4000 meters altitude, he showed in the distance this airplane. Bewildered, i wanted to have a look. Fearing quick-sands (or rather quick-salts), my driver remained on the shore while i walked bare footed on the partly dried salt-lake.
When i got to the Curtiss half an hour later i was elated. The scenery was amazing, i was absolutely alone, on a white dried lake, with a beauty crashed in the middle. It was so unexpected and so enjoyable.


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2H4
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sun Aug 09, 2009 7:48 am

Quoting WILCO737 (Reply 20):
So I took the camera and walked around the airplane and took a lot of pictures of our mighty MD11F. Then I saw the ladder there next to the wing and I thought: "YES" This is the result:

I really love that shot. I love when we can enjoy a new and unusual perspective of an aircraft. It provides an opportunity to see and appreciate new aspects of it.

Quoting Photopilot (Reply 21):
You've just successfully described the world's most boring photograph IMHO. But then again, that's why we're all different.

I agree very strongly with both points. I enjoy backgrounds and surroundings with a story to tell, and side-on shots aren't nearly creative or interesting enough for my taste. But it is really enjoyable to find a photographer whose tastes match your own and follow their uploads.

None of my photos approach perfection...particularly in the technical sense...but I think these two come closest to my vision of "the perfect shot" thus far:


MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Jason McDowell




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Jason McDowell



2H4

[Edited 2009-08-09 00:54:44]
Intentionally Left Blank
 
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cpd
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sun Aug 09, 2009 8:53 am

Quoting WILCO737 (Reply 20):
For me it is the moment, the motive, the possibility, the chance to take a picture and then got a good enough quality to actually look at it and say: "Yes, you did it."

You think like me!  

I love taking a photo in challenging conditions and looking at it and I saw, wow, that was great.   But then today, I had one photo that made me say DOH in the most massive way:

Big version: Width: 1024 Height: 683 File size: 74kb


So not fair! So close to being perfect.   Damn, damn, damn, damn, damn! Damn and blast! Damn the tail of the plane being blurry.   So close.  

But. then about 10 minutes later, you turn around and ace a similar shot with the A380.   That makes it all good.  

My own particular photo that is my favourite is this:



Everything dawned perfect, the light, the colours, and a nice, sparkling clean OneWorld Qantas A330-200.   What more could you ask for?

[Edited 2009-08-09 02:41:32]
 
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NZ107
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sun Aug 09, 2009 10:40 am

It's so hard in my view to come up with the perfect picture. There are so many categories to choose from that each category would have awesome pics within it. Air-to-air, ground rotation, silhouettes.. The list goes on. Here's one I picked out randomly, taken by Sam Chui:


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Photo © Sam Chui



My own picture which I quite like - the elegance of the 747:


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Photo © Nicholas Young



I haven't had an opportunity to shoot with slow shutters but I'll try in summer now that I have a telephoto with IS.
It's all about the destination AND the journey.
 
wilco737
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sun Aug 09, 2009 10:40 am



Quoting Cpd (Reply 24):
You think like me!  

Looks like  Wink

Quoting Cpd (Reply 24):
A330-200.   What more could you ask for?

A B747-400  duck  Big grin

wilco737
 
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ThierryD
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sun Aug 09, 2009 11:41 am



Quoting WILCO737 (Reply 20):
or the huge mountains in the background. You can see only the lower part of the mountains, but they are pretty high...

Ooooh YES!! Just coming from there. When the route line on the ND goes right through red shaded areas you know you'll have to watch out.

Quoting WILCO737 (Reply 26):
A B747-400

You're my hero!  Wink

Thierry
"Go ahead...make my day"
 
QANTAS077
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sun Aug 09, 2009 11:48 am

none of mine are particularly flash, but this one satisfies me the most.


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INNflight
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:19 pm



Quoting Cpd (Reply 24):
So not fair! So close to being perfect. Damn, damn, damn, damn, damn! Damn and blast!

Good try Chris!

I got one that will make you smile mate, may post it here for laughs when I get home in a couple of days. Think along the lines of:

400mm, after sunset, landing shot, shutter speed: 1/13th..... pretty sharp really, no noticeable blur. Downside????? BAD FRAMING....cut the nose off  Embarrassment  Big grin

Guess we win some and loose some. Nothing perfect out there, but the goal is to get as close as we all can, right.
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cpd
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:26 pm

Quoting INNflight (Reply 29):
BAD FRAMING....cut the nose off Embarrassment Big grin

Oh no - I hate those ones.   I hate it worse when I've got one really sharp, but it is too low in the frame. Those make me swear!   Fortunately I don't do that too often.  Wink

Hope you had a good time in Sydney and Melbourne - nice to meet you. Shame I couldn't get any proper time off while you were in Sydney. Sydney turned on the best weather during the week.  

Quoting WILCO737 (Reply 26):
A B747-400 duck Big grin

wilco737

Just for you, I'm going to deliberately make it an MD-11 photo next time! 

[Edited 2009-08-09 05:27:14]

[Edited 2009-08-09 05:28:19]
 
wilco737
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sun Aug 09, 2009 2:05 pm



Quoting ThierryD (Reply 27):
Ooooh YES!! Just coming from there. When the route line on the ND goes right through red shaded areas you know you'll have to watch out.

Yikes  crazy  DIdn't you learn to avoid the red areas Big grin But I know what you mean, ALA is special here...

Quoting ThierryD (Reply 27):
You're my hero!  

 hyper 

Quoting Cpd (Reply 30):
Just for you, I'm going to deliberately make it an MD-11 photo next time! 

Good boy  thumbsup 

wilco737
 
spencer
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Sun Aug 09, 2009 6:48 pm

So caught up showing my own shots off.....but man, this is such a cracking, almost perfect shot IMO:

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Photo © Marc Fulton


Well done Marc, marvellous image mate!
Spence.
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jspitfire
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Tue Aug 11, 2009 5:45 am

There is no perfect picture, but this is the one I am most happy with so far.


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Photo © Jason Pineau



I'm always looking at possible shots, and I had this one planned out for a while. I was working at the airport and every night when I towed the planes around I looked to see if this shot was there. It took about a month to finally get the conditions I wanted: a big puddle, calm winds, nice enough night, and some time to actually take the shot! I positioned the tow mule so the headlights were shining nicely on the plane and started taking some shots. On my very last shot, I saw a security truck driving my way. I was very worried he was going to go right in front of the plane, ruining the shot, but thankfully he drove behind. Not only did I get his beacon and brake lights, but his headlights also helped greatly in lighting up the fence and the back of the plane.

Of course it could have been better, a slightly larger puddle would have been nice, maybe a smaller aperture, but for me it was a special moment when everything came together with one of my favorite aircraft.
 
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JohnKrist
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Tue Aug 11, 2009 8:09 am



Quoting Clickhappy (Thread starter):
Lighting
Subject
Scenery
Angle
and of course the actual results of the shutter drop.

Another intangible criteria, again IMO, is how hard it was to get the shot, IE how did you make it happen.

My most perfect shot must be this one:


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Photo © Johnny Kristensen



Got word from a friend at MMX that MASkargo 747 was arriving in the afternoon on this cold winterday, -12C and cloudy so weather was from from photo friendly. It was supposed to arrive 2PM but didn't come until 4.30PM. Good thing about that was that the sun broke through the clouds an hour before and I got a nice sunset that put the sky in colour. And also due to the cold weather the reverse thrusters produced some great snow smoke.

Another shot that was near perfect for me was this one:


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Photo © Johnny Kristensen



TNT 747 at MMX day after delivery, perfect weather, brand new machine and found a spot I haven't been to before enabling me to get this shot with the minolta 18-70 kit lens, at 28mm.

None of those have been back to MMX after that unfortunately.
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Jalap
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RE: The Perfect Airplane Picture - Does It Exist?

Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:02 am

Hi,

Quoting Jspitfire (Reply 33):
There is no perfect picture, but this is the one I am most happy with so far.

That's a fabulous shot indeed but being a bit of a fan of your work I am even more fond of these two shots:


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Photo © Jason Pineau
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Photo © Jason Pineau



The first because I've got a thing for that icy atmosphere and this image excells in showing just that, the second because of the combination of planes and the Aurora.

For my own collecion however it's clean sideshots in good lighting that I consider as perfection. There are many criteria to what I consider clean, very important is a reasonable zoom factor, tarmac visible but not a plain ramp shot, some air visible between the planes belly and the ground (this over the full length of the shot) or just mountains in the background. I've been searching for a shot to illustrate exactly what I mean, I don't have such a shot in here and the site is too sluggish right now to keep looking. Clickhappy's shot in the first post here is a very very close match!

cheers,
Jan

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