Loop de loop ove North Avenue Beach

Photographing the Chicago Air & Water Show

I was honored to get an invite from Chris at ‘Out of Chicago‘ to detail my tips and tricks for photographing my favorite event of the year – The Chicago Air and Water Show, going down this August 17-18 at North Avenue Beach. Here are a few snippets:

Be smooth: You’ll be doing a lot of panning as the aircrafts come and go from show center so be smooth about it and follow through. Don’t stop once the shutter closes – keep it moving. Luckily, I’ve found that the speed in which you must pan to keep up with the planes is pretty ideal; it’s not so fast that you can’t keep up, yet it’s fast enough that the speed at which your body is panning stays smooth and shake free.

General Settings: Here are some general settings to start off with if you’re shooting in manual:

Freeze motion: These settings worked great for me when I really wanted to ensure I had a sharp shot – particularly for jets: ISO 320, F/5.6, 1/3200

Blur the propeller: When shooting prop planes or helicopters, you’ll want to slow your shutter speed down a bit to create some blur in the propeller. This gives your photos a better sense of flight and movement: ISO 200, F/9, 1/500

For the rest of my tips, and setting suggestions, you’ll have to head on over to my post on the OutOfChicago blog >> Photographing the Chicago Air & Water Show with Nick Ulivieri