Wiltshire from the Air

A commission from Wiltshire Life magazine to photograph the county's iconic sites from the air provides a wonderful new perspective on Wiltshire's glorious countryside, revealing patterns and hidden features not appreciated from the ground. I was expertly piloted by Mark Richardson of Bustard Flying Club in a Cessna F172M, providing the perfect platform for aerial photography as the wings are above the cabin. This image of Westbury White Horse was made in golden light 40 minutes before sunset. I composed to include the whole of Bratton Hill Fort, which cannot be successfully photographed from the ground. Getting a sharp image from a light aircraft requires a fast shutter speed and a steady hand, I was shooting with the aperture wide open at ISO 800 to achieve 1/500th of a second. For me, the picture is completed by the small group of brightly clothed picnickers beside the horse's ear, giving scale to the whole image. For more aerial photography, visit my Wiltshire from the Air Gallery.