Notes on Kite Aerial Photography: Photo Gallery

Fourth Street
Berkeley, California

A near view of railroad tracks -- this view maps the barrel distortion of the fisheye quite well (58K jpg, Canon 15-mm, May 1997).

go to location mapIn recent years a rather vibrant shopping district has developed in the west end of Berkeley along Fourth Street near University Avenue. I have a friend with a shop on Fourth Street and have been thinking about working on a low-cost KAP kit for the Nature Company (also on Fourth Street.) So on one harried Saturday afternoon of errand running I pulled over and shot a quick roll of the area.

This is one of my rare midday rolls -- I usually prefer the colors and shadows of late afternoon. Fourth Street is a fairly dense urban setting and the only open area available for launching the kite was a railroad right-of-way that runs parallel to Fourth Street. There was a nice breeze so it did not take long to get the kite up. That was a good thing because trains appeared more frequently than I would have guessed. Happily, I could see a half-mile up the tracks in either direction and there was an automatic traffic gate. When a train came along I just backed down the street a few dozen yards.

Rail traffic coming through (34K jpg, Canon 15-mm left and 37K jpg, Canon 24-mm right, May 1997).

As a case in point here is an Amtrak express rolling through at 50 mph. The righthand image shows my normal flying position on the tracks. I can just imagine my mother's reaction "Now Cris ....".

Fisheye views of the Fourth Street shopping area looking northeast (left, 49K jpg) and southeast (right, 51K jpg, Canon 15-mm left, May 1997).

About half of my shots were with the Canon 15-mm lens. These prints have a great deal of detail and certainly take in a lot of territory given the 150 foot or so altitude of the camera rig.

Oblique views of the rail corridor (41K jpg left and 38K jpg right, Canon 15-mm, May 1997

In the lefthand view you can see Berkeley's Aquatic Park in the upper left and the Truitt & White lumberyard just below it. The righthand view shows the straight rail line running just to the left of the Albany Knoll on the horizon.

Fisheye view of the rail corridor looking west (48K jpg, Canon 15-mm, May 1997).

In this wide view you can see the relationship between the rail corridor and San Francisco Bay on the horizon.

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