Category Archives: aerial photography

How to Take the Best Photos of Jet Airplanes

Inside Jet PhotoThe interest for aviation photography is growing in our community. Most photographers realize that it is challenging, yet fun. It also needs very less equipment. Airplane and jet photographs can be used for commercial purposes or personal enjoyment. Whether you are planning to take aircraft photos for your collection or selling, here are some tips that can help you.

1) Holding the camera

This is the first technique you should learn when taking photographs of jet airliners. You can’t use a tripod in aviation photography due to the space and time limit, and for safety as well. You should practice hard to master your skill in holding the camera right. You should start with your left-hand bent with your palm up. You should then rest your lens barrel in your left palm. You should grasp the camera with your right hand. Keep practicing till you get comfortable with it.

2) Panning

It is a technique used to freeze the motion of a moving object. The camera keeps pace with the speed of the moving object. While panning, you can shoot at 1/20, and the subject will be sharp. You also need to practice this technique. You can practice this on cars driving by on the street. Use different shutter speeds to see the effect on background blur.  Take various angles of the planes as well such as engines, wings, landing gear and so on.

3) Light

It is better to shoot in the early morning or the late hours. But airplanes are in the sky during the noon hours most of the time. You can use front, side, and back lighting patterns.

4) Give motion to the photograph

You may shoot airplanes when they are parked or in flight. In our mind, the plane is moving, but in the photos, they are still. To give these pictures a sense of motion, you can shoot from a low vantage point. This makes you see the underneath of the aircraft, and you can have more sky in your photograph. If the plane is flying, use a speed less than 1/125 to blur the prop, giving it a sense of motion.

Once you have several photos of the Jetliner you choose to take photos of, you can combine into a video such as this one:

5) Clouds

It is better to have clouds on your photographs. You must shoot wide if you have lots of clouds. Shoot tight if you have less number of clouds. If your plane is flying then, plan the panning in such a  way that clouds are included in the background.

6) Lenses

You first need either Nikon 80-400 or Cannon 100-400. Your camera body must produce the fastest FPS. One lens will be enough for shooting jet airplanes.

You can visit airshows to learn about different aircraft. Taking photographs of airshows can be a good practice and fun event also. You can also volunteer to work in airshows or similar activities. The key to taking the best jet airplanes photography is to practice. So, you must utilize every opportunity you get for practicing your photography skills.  When you have photos of jetliners and jet aircraft that you are ready to share with the World, visit where you can connect with like-minded aviation collectors and even sell your photos to other collectors.