Sunday, October 30, 2011

Learn all about CHDK

the Cannon Hacker's Development Kit allows you to Hack the memory card of a Cannon camera to temporarily make changes to the way the camera behaves, without making any changes to the camera itself. This is great for kite aerial photography because you can set up your camera to take pictures repeatedly, as well as to do a number of other things that can be very useful for KAP. Here's a book that explains all about CHDK:

Kite aerial photography shot of the day 06

Couple walking in the park.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Kite aerial photography - how to prevent line twist

Your kite's line can become severely twisted over the course of several flights.  I came up with a simple way to alleviate a lot of the line twist from my kite line by adding a simple piece of fishing equipment, a Ball Bearing Swivel.

For kite aerial photography I use a swivel with 200-lb. Test Strength so that there's no way that it could brake or bend. As the kite flies, the swivel turns to undo any twisting that may be in the line.

However you'll find that twisting can occur between yourself and the anchoring point of your rig. This twisting occurs when you allow your line to come off your spool one way, but you wind it back on a different way. For example if you allow your line to spin off your spool, the way toilet paper spins off a roll, but you then wind it back on to the spool by wrapping it, hand over fist, from the side of the spool, each wrap will put one twist in the line.

This is not to say your doing something wrong. It would take me a very long time to bring my kite down if I choose to roll the line back onto the spool. But to remove the twisting that I add to the line between myself and the anchor point of my KAP rig, I'll bring the rig down and remove it from the line then I will occasionally, every third or fourth flight, send my kite back up to nearly the full length of the line on my spool. I'll let it fly without the rig attached. The swivel will remove nearly all the twist in the line. Winding it back down will again put a little twist in the line, but the swivel will remove that twist also on my next flight.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Kite aerial photography shot of the day 05

Brevard Community College baseball practice.

  This was a really windy day and it was hard to get my kite back down again.  One way to better know the wind conditions at the very spot where you intend to fly your kite is to use a handheld wind meter.  You can get an accurate measurement of ground level wind speed.  It's a handy tool to help figure out if your kite will lift your rig or if you need to reconsider your plans of launching your largest kite.  Note that in the background of this photo you can see the Indian River and the Eau Gallie Causeway.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Kite aerial photography shot of the day 04

Your host, KAPing the Indialantic boardwalk.  After viewing this photo I regretted having worn white.  I think the shirt is to bright for the photo.  I should have worn some other color.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Kite aerial photography shot of the day 01

Boaters Returning Home.
In this photo, the lens cover jammed on my point and shoot causing the black triangle in the lower left corner. 
So I got 100 pictures like that.  Now when I use this camera I always look at the lense before launch to verify that it opened fully.  if not I just tap it with my finger and it snaps open.  For this image I had to get my kite really high before it could grab enough wind to lift the camera.  I was using a power sled but I no longer use that kite.  I now prefer the 9-ft. Levitation Delta .  it grabs the wind with out much effort and is much more stable than my other kite.  Plus the fact that it can lift my heavier rig.

Have you ever launched your camera, taken 100 or so pictures, brought the camera back down and only then discovered there was a problem?  share your story in a comment.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Wind speed. Will your kite lift your camera?

Here on the Space Coast I use flags to help me judge wind speed.  Whether or not my kite will lift my camera or merely drag it along a grassy field, unable to lift it, can often be easily foretold by the flutter of a flag on a pole.  Wind direction is easily observed by the waving of a flag.  Flags are everywhere, from  gas stations to schools, to the post office; they are easily spotted from almost anywhere.  With a little bit of trial and error one can quickly learn to judge his or her kite's lifting ability in any given wind by the intensity of a flag's flutter.

What other methods do you use to judge wind speed and to know if there's enough wind for your kite to lift your camera?

Saturday, March 5, 2011

How to straighten a KAP photo using photoshop

You’ve just finished a great afternoon of kite aerial photography and are eager to get your photos displayed on your large monitor to see how they came out. The very best photo however is totally crooked. looking at it makes you want to tilt your head in an effort to see it level.

Here is a tutorial on how to straighten that crooked KAP photo using photoshop

Friday, February 11, 2011

Photos of my KAP rig

I’m using Brooks leffler’s BBKK rig which I’m really happy with. The remote control was given to me by a co-worker who has a large collection of remote control airplane equipment. With this rig and camera set up I can take 1,000 photos in about an hour and a half.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Fishermen on the Beach

This photo was captured with the camera looking straight down at two fishermen on the beach, notice their shadows show each person clearly. I Captured this image using Brooxes Basic Kap kit sold by Brooks Leffler, which was then attached to a 9ft levitation delta kite made by Into the Wind.

How about you? What is your best straight down shot? Post a link.