Notes on Kite Aerial Photography: Background
The images accompanying the KAPWA Newsletter were taken by Michel Dusariez of Brussels, Belgium and are copyrighted by Michel. All pictures were taken with Fujicolor 400 print film. This view shows Han sur Lesse, Belgium. It was taken with a 17-mm lens on a Canon T70 mounted in a radio-controlled cradle. (73K jpg).
A note from Benton: In March 1996, Michel Dusariez forwarded an e-mail version of the KAPWA Foundation's most recent newsletter. I'd agreed to make the newsletter available via the KAP WWW site and its complete text, as received from KAPWA-Foundation, is provided on this and the following two WWW pages. The newsletter clearly contains useful information as well as an accounting of KAPWA's sometimes turbulent history. For comment or more information please respond to Michel Dusariez, President, KAPWA-Foundation.
Other KAPWA newsletter pages:
the KAPWA Foundation
As we have already stated in our previous NEWSLETTERS, we feel have accomplished the task we had fixed ourselves. First of all, open a dialogue with other kite photographers, then collect practical information and make it accessible through our publications and finally provide information for new amateurs.
The KAPWA-FOUNDATION will stop, for the moment, publishing regular information. This certainly does not mean that it will cease to exist, as some people think, or would like to make others believe. We remain faithful to our responsibilities. We will continue to speak about kite aerial photography, inform the public about the possibilities, notably through our books. One of these - AERIAL PHOTOGRAPHS TAKEN FROM A KITE - YESTERDAY AND TODAY - by G. de Beauffort & M. Dusariez - is now available in English and in French, see the order form at end of this page.
KAPWA-FOUNDATION will remain accessible to all, by mail, to give information to amateurs on more specific problems not dealt with in our books and publications. All the information collected from our members' communications, our historic archives and our personal hands-on experience means that KAPWA-FOUNDATION probably remains the best documented source of information which exists.
The information is continuously
updated and is available, upon written request, to anyone who
practices kite aerial photography.So we thought it would be
useful to remind our correspondents of the events which led to
the creation of KAPWA and then, in 1993, the KAPWA-FOUNDATION.
A beach and small harbor in the Florida Keys. Image taken using a Ricoh Shotmaster mounted to frame a vertical image. Michel uses an automatic rotational triggering system that can take 12 or 18 images as the camera turns through the points of the compass over a three minute period. (Michel Dusariez, 75K jpg left, 12 K jpg right).
why, by whom; for whom ?
Some people, some dates and some facts have marked the different stages of our activities over the years. Let us mention them briefly.
Too many of our old
correspondents and colleagues take for themselves the information
circulated by KAPWA and omit to mention the source. They try to
gain personal credit in this way.
A PRESENTATION OF THE PEOPLE AND THE ACTIVITIES.
Geoffroy de BEAUFFORT - born in Brussels in 1929.
Geoffroy de BEAUFFORT was, to our knowledge, the first person in Europe to start up kite aerial photography again after the Second World War. In 1958, year of the World Fair in Brussels, he took many aerial photos of the castle of Libois (Belgium), owned by his grandparents, using a kite. The cellular kite, with an aluminum frame and nylon fabric was made by the champion motor cyclist André MILHOUX. He participated in the foundation of the short-lived Kite Club of Belgium, took part in that of the New Belgian Kiteflier and, finally, in 1985, was closely involved in the creation, organization and management of KAPWA. Founding member, then Administrator of KAPWA, Geoffroy de BEAUFFORT discretely assists the management, faithful to the options of the association. His historic articles carry authority.
This shot of a hovercraft arriving in Dover is remarkable in that the timing of the exposure did not result from a radio command but the interval timer of the Ricoh Shotmaster. (Michel Dusariez, 40K jpg).
Michel DUSARIEZ - born in Brussels-BELGIUM in 1938, Optician-Optometrist since 1958.
Michel DUSARIEZ discovered adult kiting in 1978 and immediately imagined the possibilities it offered for aerial photos. He took his first kite photo a year later, in June 1979. He participated in the foundation of the short-lived Kite Club of Belgium in 1979. In 1982, he founded, with Jacques DURIEU, the New Belgian Kiteflier, which he presided for the first 5 years. He decided to leave the association in 1987 because of differing views on the running of the association.
In 1985 he founded KAPWA - Kite Aerial Photography Worldwide Association- with, as partners, Geoffroy de BEAUFFORT, Administrator, Raoul FOSSET, translator and David TOWN, USA correspondent. This association was designed to group together people all over the world who used the kite to lift a camera. A bilingual publication in French and English appeared quarterly from 1985-1993 to inform members all over the world. Over the years, KAPWA MAGAZINE, which in 1990 became KAPWA NEWS and TECHNIQUE, became more important and was soon 84 pages long, with a circulation of 500. Historical articles were published parallel to technical articles which showed the latest gadgets and tips.
Concerning the different aspects of aerial photography which he have build since 1978, we could mention ; how to build an ultra light, 4X5 inch format camera, operated by timer, several rigs, some of which are modular, for reflex cameras such as the Canon T70, an automatic photographic system using a small compact, the RICOH FF9 (in the USA called RICOH Shotmaster) which was the first to have an intervallometer specially designed for our activities. As a technical challenge, he has also done kite aerial photography using a 8X10 inch box he made himself. He has also experimented with aerial stereoscopic photography and, very recently, aerial panoramic panoptic photography covering 360° in one photograph.
David TOWN - computer expert - USA.
An American, living on the East Coast, he decided to make a computerized list of kite aerial photographers in the 80's. As soon as he heard of the existence of KAPWA in 1985, he joined the team, with the intention of creating a base on the American continent. After several years of efficient work, his interest in kite photography faded and he turned towards stunt kites, still maintaining frendly contacts with KAPWA.
Raoul FOSSET - Retired - Belgian.
The convincing speeches of our ex-associate Raoul FOSSET and several pages of his little photocopied brochure "Kite Aerial Photography" could lead some to believe that Raoul FOSSET practically invented aerial photography. The reality is somewhat different, as you may see.
It was in June 1984, during a demonstration organised by Michel DUSARIEZ in association with the magazine "POURQUOI PAS", that Raoul FOSSET discovered at the same time both adult kiting and kite aerial photography, which had already been practiced for several years in Belgium by a small group of amateurs. He was attracted to the sport, and it was to Michel DUSARIEZ that the new boy came to get the necessary information and instructions to make a start. He quickly became an excellent aerial photographer. He was a partner in KAPWA on its foundation in 1985 as a translator, and he carried out this role for three years.
Following behaviour considered incompatible with KAPWA ethics, the president asked him to resign in 1988. KAPWA then became the object of his resentment.
Arthur Batut's house in Labruguiere, France revisited and photographed 100 years after the inventor's seminal aerial views of the same subject. (Michel Dusariez, 55K jpg).
Serge NEGRE - Nurse - France.
Geoffroy de BEAUFFORT carried out long and detailed historic research definitively proved the invention of Arthur BATUT, which had been questioned. The process was invented and put into practice in 1888 by the Frenchman Arthur BATUT from Labruguière in the Tarn (France). This fact was established. The details and conclusions of the research were published in 1985, in French and English, by KAPWA.
During a trip to Labruguière in 1986 to meet the descendants of Arthur BATUT we contacted Serge NEGRE who knew them. Serge NEGRE was interested in the history of his town and region. We strongly encouraged him to use his local connections to collect together the very rich archives, left by the inventor to his inheritors and we suggested that he should ask the municipality to open a permanent museum of Photography and Kiting designed to display the archives and ensure their safety and publicity. On our first meeting with Serge NEGRE we introduced him to the technique and practice of kite aerial photography. He was undoubtedly one of our pupils who made the most spectacular progress. He organised, with the help of KAPWA, the Commemorations of the Centenary of the invention in 1988 in Labruguière, bringing together many kitefliers from France and other countries. During the ceremonies, the museum was inaugurated and one of the avenues of the town was named after the inventor. At the same time a book tracing the history of the invention was published.
As a competent amateur radio
operator, Serge NEGRE used his knowledge of electronics to make
innovations in the technique of applying video viewfinding to
kite aerial photography. He published interesting articles on
this subject in KAPWA Magazine. An impenitent globe-trotter,
Serge NEGRE participated in several "ANTARCTICA"
expeditions with Jean-Louis ETIENNE, using his kite aerial
photography skills in the service of science. As we known, he was
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