Joker's Bottle of Frogs

by JokerXL

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Wedding & Portrait Photography

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I got into Kite Aerial Photography this year, strap a half-decent camera under a big enough kite and let the wind, and a bit of electronic wizardry, do the rest.
I set up a blog;
if anyone's interested.
I thought this image was appropriate for Moblog as it's been taken with a cam-phone, a Nokia N96, on a ten second intervalometer.
Mancs out there will recognise the location.
19th Dec 2011, 18:25  


MaggieD says:

WOW! and then again, WOW!

19th Dec 2011, 19:29

lilitiger says:

That sounds great!
I had a pocket book on making kites back in the 70s. The last project was kite photography.
There was a complicated lever system to set off the camera ( a full weight reflex) triggered by a baby kite running up the string of the main kite, if I remember correctly. I no longer have the book, unfortunately.
I never tried it because I didn't have my own camera at the time, but for an instamatic. And you needed a camera with a cable trigger.

19th Dec 2011, 20:48

Viv says:

Did recognise it (might live in Yorks but Manchester was home for my first 20+ years) mind Salford Quays was Salford Docks then. Quite amazing.

19th Dec 2011, 21:55

Viv says:

It's a fantastic hobby - some great results

19th Dec 2011, 22:32

JokerXL says:

Had some great trips out, it gives you a reason to get out and about. I was never one for "just" going for a walk, need to be actually doing something all the time.
I know the technique Lilitiger describes but it is little used these days. That was when you had just one shot, send the drone up the line to trigger the shutter then bring the whole thing back down again to wind on and reset the trigger mechanism.
Now, with digital, we can leave it up there for hours if neccessary, happily clicking away.
I have a system of servos and carbon-fibre rigging to let the camera, an Olympus Pen, rotate, tilt and release the shutter.
That wasn't used in this shot though, it's a heavy set up and winds were light. I have a lightweight backup rig, very basic aluminium bracket, and the N96 mobile phone has a built in intervalometer. Set to take a picture every ten seconds, angle the rig to shoot down the kite line (visible in the top of the shot) and walk about a bit. Wherever I'm standing will be the centre of shot.

20th Dec 2011, 08:09

Kostika says:

I do love these shots you've done with the kite and this is no exception. Very clever and nice work.

20th Dec 2011, 11:36

Wendle says:

Fancy, yet so simple. Ace shot.

20th Dec 2011, 14:26

taniwha says:

Oh man, this is so ace. It doesn't look tilt shifted but has that feel about it.

21st Dec 2011, 09:49

JokerXL says:


21st Dec 2011, 12:41

Earthlad says:

Yea this is good, wow, I must try this for some tiltshift pics

21st Dec 2011, 14:24 to dig out the kites :P

22nd Dec 2011, 09:04

nige says:

I've always wondered Joker - and it's a basic question I bet - but how do you get the kite down without breaking the camera? Is it kept in a secure housing?

23rd Dec 2011, 23:30

JokerXL says:

Good question Nige.
No, it's deffinately not in a secure housing, see KAP blog, it dangles very precariously from the line about ten meters below the kite.
On launch the kite is allowed to settle at a hight of +/-10m and the rig attached. The actual camera hangs on a trapeze that works as a stabilizer. Let out another 300m of line and you get the height you need.
"landing" is obviously the reverse of all this.

24th Dec 2011, 05:50

Damage says:

Love the idea of this. You can get a different take of everything from that high.

22nd Jan 2012, 20:26