So there’s a rule for all journalists who work for the Gannett corporation: You’re only allowed to fly in a plane to cover a story if that story is a natural disaster.
So when I was assigned a story on world-famous aerobatic pilot Sean D. Tucker, I had to figure out how to get a shot of him flying without running afoul of the rules.
Now, I don’t mind bending the rules occasionally, but I had already been reprimanded in this job for going flying, and you can only plead ignorance once.
My solution was a couple Bogen Magic Arms, Super Clamps, a remote shutter release and a fisheye lens in the cockpit. Here’s the setup:
This was the first time I had ever mounted a camera in a cockpit, but Sean and his crewman Ian checked my work and approved. I told Sean to press the button as much as possible, especially when he felt the sun on his face — it was an easy task for him, a true professional who’s done this sort of thing before.
In the photo below, you can see the camera setup in front of Sean’s face:
I was a little nervous as Sean flew and I waited for my gear to return, but everything worked perfectly. The photo ran huge on our front page to accompany a feature on Sean and his flight school.
And I also shot a portrait: