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”How did you get into that?' That's the question I get from people viewing my website or one of my prints. If it's a 'little planet view' they are often tipping their head or in some cases shaking it. I guess you could say there are two elements that draw me to this kind of photography. One would be getting high and the other would be looking around with a wide angle view.
I'm not sure where the getting high thing started. Perhaps it was my dad putting me on a booster seat in his Piper Comanche and letting me do the elevator and ailerons while he did the rudder. I couldn't reach. Perhaps it’s a 60s thing. I won't go into that too much. It's a blur anyway. Getting up high has not always worked out for me. From falling out of the top bunk in Indian Guides to tumbling backwards out of a willow tree from 40' at the age of 10 to a botched hang gliding launch at the age of 38, I have certainly taken my lumps. I suspect more than a few people think these sudden jolts to my brain matter account for my fixation on the 'little planet views'. In spite of all this I must say I have enjoyed the sensation and the view some altitude provides, from late afternoon flights with an Eagle just off my glider's wingtip, to sunsets perched in a cave on the side of a cliff. I suppose I'm getting stodgy because I get my views from a remote control camera mount on a tethered blimp or a 45' pole with a robot named Ansel on top but somehow I still manage to get my fix.
The wide angle view thing I think stems from my 'day job' doing computer aided design. I'm always rotating 3D models and zooming in and out so when I saw my first interactive panorama on the web I was hooked quickly. I also think It just goes with getting high. You climb the cliff to get the wide angle view. I've heard a spherical panorama described as 'all that can be seen from a point'. I like to think of 'little planet views' and 'tunnel views' as all that can be seen from a point seen all at once. I hope you all 'enjoy the view.'