Notes on Kite Aerial Photography: Others
Just to answer one of my teasers - Where's the camera pointing????
The front of a mini maglite type torch (hooded) mounted just beneath the camera, power supply commoned back to the battery pack or wherever to save weight on extra batteries, that does the trick.....
I used to winch out the kite and rig to 3 or 400 feet, lock the brake and leg it to a suitable hiding spot near the subject, pan and tilt the camera until I saw the light in the sky winking at me and then fire away at the shutter. As long as I was where the "subject" was I could peek round behind a wall or whatever so as not to be too obtrusive.
When I built the rig, like many it was an evolution, and even now there are several modifications that I could make. The light is one obvious area, rather than using an opaque hood over the front of the torch, a specially made hood of coloured acetates would be useful, then it would give a better indication of which way the camera was pointing rather than whether it was pointing at me. Red, green, blue and yellow quadrants would help enormously. Judging by the colour of the light, you'd know which way it was pointing. I'll have a go at that soon I think.
(Later Simon wrote)
Glorious sunshine this last weekend, kite checked out, winch
bearings greased, (brake degreased shortly after!) KAP system
revived, new batteries in, all systems ready, sunny day , a
dusting of snow on the ground and no damned wind... So instead I
went into Aberdeen shopping, and bought the most wonderful lamp
for the rig, designed for strapping to your arm as you walk along
dark roads at night, it has a fairly decent xenon strobe tube
mounted in a transparent beacon hood. Absolutely perfect, so I
taped on some coloured acetates and set it in the middle of a
field. I could clearly see the change in colour of the flashing
light as I walked around it at great distance. The whole thing
cost 5 pounds sterling, and looks as though its made to go on the
rig, better still it runs of 1.5v and seems to flash for ever.
Much much brighter than ultrabright LED's. I can't believe that
I'd just written to you talking about modifying the light idea,
finding this lamp was such a coincidence. Perhaps thinking of KAP
keeps your eyes tuned into things that you wouldn't normally see
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