Notes on Kite Aerial Photography: Photo Gallery

Lawrence Hall of Science

go to location mapThe Lawrence Hall of Science (LHS) is a science museum managed by the University of California. It is located immediately east of the UC Berkeley Campus at a 1000' elevation in the Berkeley hills. The steep slopes of this west-facing hillside are home to the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), a research unit also managed by the University of California. The LHS Plaza offers a grand view of the Berkeley landscape and many visitors pause here to enjoy the scenery.

These photographs were taken on a Saturday afternoon during my first successful flight in five different attempts to loft a camera above the museum plaza. Its a good thing the site is only a half mile from my house. The images were taken with the Yashica T4 lofted by the Sutton Flowform 30. Winds were quite modest, probably around 5 to 7 mph, and I had to nurse the Sutton into the air. There were lulls on several occasions that lowered the camera rig to the ground. When this happened, I would inhaul kiteline, hold the rig, and wait until the wind returned. The rig touched the ground twice (softly) but was not harmed. One of these days I'll work out some landing feet like Wolfgang Bieck's rig.

View of LBNL and UC Berkeley from the Lawrence Hall of Science, April 1996 (50K jpg)

This somewhat tilted view was taken immediately above the LHS building and shows part of that structure. The white vertical lines at the top of the hill are the Wind Organ, a sound-producing sculpture. Further down are the round LBNL buildings built for the lab's Bevatron and the Cyclotron. Further yet is the UC Berkeley Campus and its Campanile (easier to see in the larger jpg.)

The LHS Plaza fountain, April 1996 (left 35K jpg, right 40K jpg, )

As is evident, these images were taken just before sunset - between 6:15 and 7:15 - so the shadows were long and the colors warm. The left view shows the museum's octagonal fountain after the water jets were turned off. I'm standing in the upper right of the image. The right view shows the fountain running. You can see people standing on the bench that forms the perimeter of the pool. Also visible are wet tracks of a dog that was wading in the pool just moments earlier.

Pheena the whale - a sculpture by Chris Benedict, April 1996 (32K jpg)

The museum plaza features a life-size, fiberglass sculpture of a California Grey Whale. Built by master sailboat craftsman Chris Benedict the sculpture generally has kids and adults climbing around on it. In this image you can see a child riding on its tail. The black surface underneath the whale is protective matting.

Pedestrians crossing a LHS Plaza entry bridge, April 1996 (37K jpg)

This image was a very sharp exposure. Each rail in the fence and gate is visible in the print but they fuzzed out in the scan.

A couple in plan view, April 1996 (57K jpg)

I asked this couple if I could take their photograph and they said fine. I only took one photo of them and in it they seem to have coordinated a grimace. I really don't know why - maybe the camera was headed downward. It makes for an interesting image.

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All rights reserved. Revised: Thursday, July 18, 1996