Kite photographer captures spectacular aerial images of India


posted Friday, November 30, 2012 at 6:09 PM EDT


We've seen spectacular aerial images before, but nothing quite like these truly unique shots of India by kite photographer Nicolas Chorier.

Chorier spent nine years shooting India with a camera attached to a specially designed kite, and produced the compelling photo book, "A Kite's Eye View: India: Between Earth and Sky."

Chorier, who grew up in France but now lives in India, hand makes his kites based on traditional Japanese rokkaku dako construction, but with added stability and lift to support his heavy digital SLR camera rig. The DSLR is mounted on a small cradle that is hung on the line under the kite.

The cradle is manipulated by remote control from the ground as the kite soars into the heavens, with the ability to rotate the rig by 360 degrees and tilt it up to 90 degrees.

Udaipur Lake Palace in Rajasthan. (© Nicolas Chorier)

An air-to-ground video link lets Chorier monitor what the camera is seeing from above in real time on a portable screen. When Chorier sees the framing he wants, he hits a button and the camera captures a picture.

Despite the high-tech rig, he knows he's still beholden to the unpredictability of the weather to get the shot.

"The wind is completely my boss," he says. "He decides if I can shoot, when I can shoot, where I can shoot, and what I can shoot. Without the wind, I'm unemployed."

Men practice the Indian martial art of Kalaripayattu in Kerala. (© Nicolas Chorier)

Check out the video below where Chorier demonstrates his kite photography technique. See more of his amazing photos on his website.

(Via The Daily Mail)

(Thanks Phil!)