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Cloudscape_4953

Clousdscape at 40,000 feet over the Caribbean Sea

I returned from my trip to Port Antonio, Jamaica late Monday night after a lengthy delay with the plane leaving the tarmac in Kingston and further delays upon arrival in Toronto. It is never a good sign when you watch the pilot walking across the tarmac on his way to the back of the aircraft with a roll of duct tape in his hand. As it turned out the plane had a crack in a fire retardant panel in the rear luggage compartment and due to safety reasons was unable to fly with luggage in the hold. The plane would have to fly back to Toronto leaving the rear luggage compartment empty. Upon arrival in Toronto folks would have to wait and see if their luggage made its way back in the front luggage hold. Any bags that did not make their way onto the plane were going to be transported by West Jet to Montego Bay and flown up to Toronto the next day. As luck would have it mine did not which meant a further delay to line-up and fill out the necessary paperwork for the delivery of the luggage at a later date. A tip-of-the-hat to West Jet for delivering my suitcase to my door-step in less than 48 hours of my arrival home.

While it can often be difficult to create decent photographs through the plexiglass windows of commercial airlines it is still worth a try when conditions are optimal and interesting compositions present themselves.Whenever I fly I book a window seat in advance and select a seat near the front of the plane so that I do not encounter the heat distortion from the airplane’s engines, which would affect images photographed from the rear of the plane. When I am creating the photographs I keep the lens as square to the plexiglass windows as possible and position the lens close to the window without touching it – there is a lot of vibration on the window pane. In addition, by shooting with a fairly wide aperture the scratches in the plexiglass windows, especially those found on older planes, will not be noticeable in the resulting photographs. The cloudscapes here were photographed with an f-stop of 5.6 at 40,000 feet over the Caribbean Sea, while the plane was traveling at roughly 500 miles per hour. The first image was captured at mid-day while the second image was created during the last hour of daylight. Which is your favorite?

Cloudscape_6447

Cloudscape over the Caribbean Sea

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