Kites, camera, action | Society | Times Crest
Popular on Times Crest
  • In This Section
  • Entire Website
  • Home can be the place you want to leave
    July 20, 2013
    Amitava Kumar attempts to capture the essence of Patna in a short biography, quite unattractively titled 'A Matter of Rats'.
  • Legal fees are on the house
    July 20, 2013
    Corporate social responsibility has entered India's legal corridors. Top law firms and lawyers are doing pro bono so that they can give back to…
  • Cut the khap
    July 20, 2013
    Dressed in jeans? Feasting on chowmein? A Twitter parody of a disapproving khap panchayat is ready with a rap on the knuckle that makes you chuckle.
More in this Section
Profiles
Leaving tiger watching to raise rice Ecologist Debal Deb, who did his post-doctoral research from IISc in…
The crorepati writer He's the man who gives Big B his lines. RD Tailang, the writer of KBC.
Chennai-Toronto express Review Raja is a Canadian enthusiast whose quirky video reviews of Tamil…
Don't parrot, perform Maestro Buddhadev Dasgupta will hold a masterclass on ragas.
A man's man Shivananda Khan spent his life speaking up for men who have sex with men.
Bhowmick and the first family of Indian football At first glance, it would be the craziest set-up in professional football.
From Times Blogs
The end of Detroit
Jobs in Detroit's car factories are moving to India.
Chidanand Rajghatta
How I love the word ‘dobaara’...
Can ‘bindaas’ or ‘jhakaas’ survive transliteration?
Shobhaa De
Anand marte nahin...
India's first superstar died almost a lonely life.
Robin Roy
AERIAL LENS

Kites, camera, action

|


PICTURESQUE SIDE: The view of the Taj Mahal from the top is just as majestic

Ever thought of using a kite to click pictures? Probably not. It might seem right out of a James Bond movie, but French photographer Nicolas Chorier specialises in kite aerial photography. Based out of Puducherry, Chorier's firm, Kite's Eye View Private Limited, has so far taken several thousand aerial pictures of almost all major heritage sites, buildings and monuments in India and Uzbekistan. Interestingly, another French photographer, Arthur Batut, was the first to start experimenting with this technique, back in 1888 in Labruguière, a small village in Southern France. However, Chorier has used the latest advances in technology to elevate it to the level of art.

Name a major monument in the country and Chorier promptly produces a wide range of aerial images shot in unusual and astonishing angles. His list includes Taj Mahal, Jama Masjid, Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, Mumbai, the entire Union Territory of Puducherry and beaches in Kerala. Chorier has even completed a UNESCO commissioned project shooting the city of Luang Prabang in Laos along the banks of the Mekong River to survey erosion-related issues in 2004. He also undertook an aerial survey on Matto Grosso, third largest state in Brazil in 2001-02 for an agronomic research department.

The equipment, says the ace photographer, is simple enough to procure. All you need are specially-designed kites that carry cameras mounted on a small cradle to shoot breathtaking pictures of anything and everything under the sun. As for the technique, Chorier flies the kite to a desired height (about 100 feet) and when it starts gliding in the air he sends his camera (Canon 5D MarkII) mounted on a small cradle, up on the line, under the kite. The best part? Chorier operates the cradle with a remote control to move it in all possible directions. An air-to-ground video link sends images to a portable television screen strapped on his neck allowing him to pick amazing views. "The camera can be lifted up to 250 m. But low altitudes are often more interesting, " says Chorier adding, "The kites' precision and potential provide an exciting, cost effective and innovative solution for any type of aerial photography, from the ground or from a boat in motion, like tracking smoking vessels or wildlife. "

Not surprisingly, Chorier has always been passionate about kites and photography. "I started flying kites about 25 years ago and I practised photography as an amateur. It was only natural to combine the two (in 1996), " he explains. Slowly he developed interest in a wide range of disciplines including archaeology, architecture, agronomy, tourism, heritage and wildlife to name a few. "Each of these applications led me to devise tailor-made hardware and photography techniques, which I am constantly improving. Each new venture brings me into contact with dedicated and highly knowledgeable specialists, " he adds.

Besides being non-polluting and nonintrusive, working with kites also allows Chorier to remain stationary over a site for a few hours, thus enabling him to take many high-resolution pictures at different angles. "It is also easy to carry the aerial platform anywhere in the world, without any hassles. It fits in regular cases and can be operational in 10 minutes, " says Chorier, who has widely exhibited his works in France, Europe, USA, Malaysia and India. Perhaps why he likes this technique so much is because it needs few square inches of fabric, little technical know-how, simple equipment and a gentle breeze. "Moreover I really like the idea of using natural energy. I wouldn't feel the same if I was using helium or any other gas for a blimp or kerosene, " he adds.

Photography is not Chorier's only accomplishment, he has written a coffee-table book, Kite's Eye View, India in 2007, published by Roli Books. The book was a product of 12 years of intensive kite aerial photography covering all major landmarks in the country. As expected, 30, 000 copies of the book have been sold worldwide. (More details about his works are available on his website http:// www. nicopix. com. )

Clearly, with an eye for beauty and digital cameras, the soaring idea of kite-based aerial photography has morphed many flights of fantasy into an artful reality.

Reader's opinion (1)

Shernaz ItaliaFeb 21st, 2011 at 11:01 AM

Excellent idea and great for aerial photography without a million bureaucratic permissions.

 
Other Times Group news sites
The Times of India | The Economic Times
इकनॉमिक टाइम्स | ઈકોનોમિક ટાઈમ્સ
Mumbai Mirror | Times Now
Indiatimes | नवभारत टाइम्स
महाराष्ट्र टाइम्स
Living and entertainment
Timescity | iDiva | Bollywood | Zoom
| Technoholik | MensXP.com

Networking

itimes | Dating & Chat | Email
Hot on the Web
Hotklix
Services
Book print ads | Online shopping | Business solutions | Book domains | Web hosting
Business email | Free SMS | Free email | Website design | CRM | Tenders | Remit
Cheap air tickets | Matrimonial | Ringtones | Astrology | Jobs | Property | Buy car
Online Deals
About us | Advertise with us | Terms of Use and Grievance Redressal Policy | Privacy policy | Feedback
Copyright© 2010 Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd. All rights reserved. For reprint rights: Times Syndication Service