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I am one that thinks photographers should always be working to improve their craft. Thus, when my father and I started to learn RC aviation together, I viewed it also as an opportunity to improve my aviation photography skills. I predicted that photographing RC planes would help improve aviation photography skills and possibly lead to some portfolio images that might promote my being hired for assignments. (BTW, learning RC aviation is more difficult than predicted and we’ve had to recover our airplane from trees and roofs a few times.)

I’m not yet sure about the portfolio images, but I definitely think it has added learning opportunities.

I recently went to an event of the Keizer Krosswinds and had a blast photographing the aircraft and talking to the members.

There are a few differences with RC avitaion photography. First, propeller speeds are much faster, so you can shoot with higher shutter speeds and still get the propeller blur. The other big difference is that panning is a bit more active, because you need to photograph the aircraft closer to you; they are considerably smaller after all. Other than these factors, it is essentially the same as full scale aviation and thus the practice is transferrable.