Click for moreJun 20, 2011 - Hamilton Air Show 2011 - Vintage Aircraft at their Finest

The 2011 Hamilton Airshow was absolutely amazing. After a 10 year hiatus, the show returned this year, and the organizers truly outdid themselves. If you're a fan of aircraft of any sort, and especially if you like WWI and WWII planes, I hope you enjoy this set of blog posts. Follow the link at the bottom of each page to see all 4 parts.

Photographically, as this blog shows, I shoot a lot of birds. It's an enjoyable pastime, and provides endless opportunities to get creative with shooting technique. Shooting aircraft either at a local airport or at an airshow is equally challenging and rewarding.

On this past weekend I took 3 cameras, my main rig, a Canon DSLR with various lenses, a 3D Fuji camera, and also a Canon HD video camera. On the DSLR alone I took 600 shots, and at the time I'm writing this I've only had a chance to go through the shots taken with the DSLR.

Shooting on the tarmac, I used a wide-angle lens to capture as much of these glorious planes as possible. Later standing near the taxiway and runway where the planes were taking off and landing, I used a handheld 400mm lens.

Technique-wise, I was aiming to do a number of things with my shooting. Of course it's important to keep everything in focus, so fast shutter speeds are important, however I also went with slower shutter speeds (1/60th - 1/80th of a second), which allowed blurring of the background while I panned as the aircraft flew by. An additional reason for a slower shutter-speed is to blur the propellers and show motion. At higher shutter speeds the props get frozen which can be an odd appearance for an in-flight aircraft.

The Hamilton Air Show was better than shows like the Toronto Air Show because prior to the aerial performances, visitors were able to walk around in the hangar and on the tarmac and see all the awesome planes on site. People were even able to board the larger planes, which is an opportunity you won't find at most shows.

Due to the volume of aircraft present at the show, I've broken this post up into a series of posts so you can see each type and era of aircraft separately. Enjoy!

At the bottom of each post you can navigate to the next part.

Part 1 - WWI Era

Part 2 - WW2 Fighters

Part 3 - Trainers

Part 4 - Bombers




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