Regional Airport, Dubuque, Iowa

On Monday starts the EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, an annual gathering of aviation enthusiasts from all over the world with more than 10,000 aircraft. The week before the North American Trainer Association (NATA) has a gathering at the Regional Airport in Dubuque, Iowa and many of their T-6’s can be seen every year. I was at the airport Friday evening and yesterday afternoon but because of weather (we had a tornado warning yesterday) all aircraft were just parked on the tarmac.

This morning I had a chance to point my lens at some of the T-6’s and a P-51D as they finally took off and headed to Oshkosh for the big airshow next week. I shot between 1/100s and 1/125s because I wanted the prop of the planes blurred. With a hazy blue sky in the back it is not so easy to communicate fast motion but the blurred prop tells the story.

You may ask, why do you shoot aircraft as a wildlife and nature photographer? First, I have a deep respect for those who keep these old airplanes flying. They are part of our history and I believe it is important to keep it alive for the younger generation. Second, it is a great practice for shooting a moving subject and I’m certain that my wildlife photography can benefit from. And third, most old aircraft have an esthetic appeal to me, like many other historic master pieces of engineering.