Before Drones There Was Captive Balloon Aerial Photography

captive balloon photos

We stumbled upon this article from Popular Mechanics that was printed in 1905. It extols the virtues of the latest in trend in photography, captive balloon photography. The headlines and content could be applied to any article written about drone photography today. Enjoy.

Within the Reach of Every Photographer, Amateur or Professional — Expense no Longer an Obstacle.
It is quite possible to take photographs from a captive balloon so small that the experiment is robbed of almost all of its expense and the apparatus is convenient to its owner on any fair day he may wish to use it.

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The length of the captive line may vary. Excellent photographs may be taken at an elevation of 150 feet and good ones at 500 feet. We would recommend the use of a long line, as there is a pleasure in experimenting with altitudes and comparing effects and results.

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One of the great features, both of enjoyment and profit of captive balloon photography, is the complete control of the apparatus which may be maintained.

Naturally, it requires considerable experimenting to secure good results by this means. The balloon, the camera, conductors and connections must all be carefully adjusted, and probably readjusted, before the apparatus works entirely satisfactorily. But by this method captive balloon photography is quite within the realm of the possible for any photographer, amateur or professional, and will repay trying.

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