Notes on Kite Aerial Photography: Home Page

Charles C. Benton
Berkeley, California

Your author with his first KAP rig. Beyond the Golden Gate Bridge you can see Alcatraz Island and the East Bay Hills to the left and San Francisco to the right, April 1995 (31K jpg).

These web pages will be a journal of sorts, a place to gather and record notes regarding a developing interest in aerial photography from kites. Kite aerial photography appeals to that part of me, perhaps of all of us, that would slip our earthly bonds and see the world from new heights. An aerial view offers a fresh perspective of familiar landscapes and in doing so challenges our spatial sensibilities, our grasp of relationships.

Aerial photography aligns nicely with some of my previous interests. I've been a photographer since my college days and know the basics of this area. I've been flying radio-controlled sailplanes for about eight years now and have a decent foundation here as well. Though I know little of kites what I have learned to date suggests they are a pleasant enough hobby. Another piece of the puzzle is my developing interest in the Internet which turned out to be my principal source of information in exploring the mechanics of kite aerial photography. Researching this esoteric topic provided an interesting test of the network's various resources. At this time I also find myself working on the learning curve of html authorship, desktop publishing, and digital image manipulation (this document serves as a testbed for these endeavors.) Finally, I'm delighted by both natural and built landscapes so the notion of documenting the lay of the land seems the ideal Sunday afternoon pursuit. Thus here I am.

I hope you find these pages useful. Drop me a line if you have experiences or thoughts to share about kite aerial photography.

Table of Contents

The pages at this WWW site provide snapshots of my learning curve in kite aerial photography. As I post this note (April 1998) I've been taking kite aerial photographs for three years. It has been a delightful hobby.  Here is a quick guide to the structure of the Kite Aerial Photography WWW Site:

Detailed Table of Contents Page

What's New Page
What's New Archive Page

Background Information on Kite Aerial Photography and related topics including pointers to source materials on the Internet and in other forms. The links in this section proved useful as I tried to get a handle on KAP. It turns out that there are surprising sources of information out there waiting to be found. (detailed page roster)

Information on Equipment and Technique - This section provides details on the equipment with which I have direct experience. Sections include kites, radio-control equipment (work in progress), cameras, camera cradles, suspensions, and a discussion of lower cost alternatives.  (detailed page roster)

A Gallery of Kite Aerial Photography Images - I've been following Craig Wilson's advice (Aerial Eye, Vol. 1, No. 1) that experience is best accrued by taking photographs. I've packaged images from my expeditions in pages of four to eight images each. Most of the images are from the Bay Area. The gallery table of contents is now in reverse chronological order because I think the more recent efforts have turned out better.  There is also a map key for the gallery pages(detailed page roster)

Other Kite Aerial Photographers - It has been my great fortune to meet a number of experienced kite aerial photographers during the last year. The experience is often like taking an advanced seminar. These pages summarize the best of these encounters and provide a glimpse of how others approach the topic (work in progress).  (detailed page roster)

Image Conventions

My first aerial photograph,
March 1995 (43K jpg)

In the gallery sections I provide moderately-sized inline GIF images that are linked to larger JPEG files. I've turned the colored link borders off almost all of the inline images at this site. However most of the images in these pages, and particularly those with the white "snapshot" borders, are linked to larger JPEG versions of the same photograph. Just click on the inline image to load the larger version (try the adjoining sample).

It is worth noting that I rarely crop the images posted on the gallery pages (perhaps one in fifty is cropped.) So the framing of the images generally reflects the camera's actual view.


Caveat and Acknowledgments

I hasten to add that these pages were begun by an eager but relatively inexperienced hobbyist. While I have since accrued some experience, there are many out there with yet more experience and a better grasp of every aspect of this pursuit. I am particularly grateful to the many KAPers like Anne Rock, Brooks Leffler, Wolfgang Bieck, Craig Wilson, Steve Eisenhauer, Henry Jebe, and others who have contributed to the Aerial Eye, Internet archives, and FAQs. I welcome reader's suggestions and corrections while noting that errors and omissions are mine alone.

link to Benton's Home Page featuring other interesting devices.

Also check out my world's most specialized barter offer - kite aerial photographs for slide rules and fountain pens.

I have recently added the Voice of the Viewer -- a site feature added in 2001. This page allows visitors to nominate KAP images found on the WWW as a favorite image. In doing so they provide a brief critique of the image to explain why it appeals. A second page provides a list of the nominated images. From there you can click to the images themselves.

[ Home Page | Background | Equipment | Gallery | Maps | Discussion | Others | Search | What's New ]

Comments to author: . All content, graphics and
images contained throughout are Copyright (C) 1995 - 2005 by Charles C. Benton
and are protected by United States and International copyright laws.
No text, graphic or image may be used whole or in part, individually,
or as part of a derivative work without express written permission.

All rights reserved. Revised: Friday, June 25, 2010





Hit Counter