Photography by Ian L. Sitren

Posts tagged “aviation photographer

Firefighting And Fitness

From a magazine feature series I produced and photographed for Iron Man Magazine. It was about fitness in the military. This was a training day with the firefighters at March Air Reserve Base. That is their training aircraft fuselage burning with aviation fuel. Me right behind them shooting photographs.

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Air To Air

Just some thoughts on air to air photography. Flying with the Palm Springs Air Museum, we were doing July 4th celebration flyovers. Alongside the T-28 Trojan, I was in the backseat of the Red Tail P-51 Mustang “Bunny”. The Mustang is at best, somewhat short on room in the back. There is also a curvature to the canopy that lends itself to a lot of distortion. My choice of gear here made it all work out easier.

I was shooting the latest Fujifilm mirrorless camera, the X-H1 and the Fujifilm XF50-140 lens. The 5-axis in-body stabilization works in conjunction with the lens stabilization, perfect for this kind of shooting. It is also physically smaller and lighter than a full size DSLR which in tight quarters or pulling a couple of g’s makes a huge difference.

This time out I also especially appreciated my camera strap choice. From Vulture Equipment Works especially made for aviation use. A tougher strap does not exist. It is designed with carabiners connecting the strap to the camera. The ability to easily disconnect them helped in easily getting the strap out of the way of my headset cable. When you are getting in, you are buckling up your parachute, shoulder harness and seat belt, camera and headset, so wanting to change how you set things up from when you got in does happen.

At the same time, I was also running two GoPro’s. Each mounted inside to my left and right, pointed 45 degrees front. Got some great video I will show you later.

Anyway just thought I would share. It was great fun! Thanks!

July 4th Flyovers


Join Me For The Reno Air Races!

Come along with me and the Palm Springs Air Museum

Getting Ready To Go To Reno! For the National Championship Air Races for 2018! Join with us as part of our Red Tails Kingcobra Race Team as our P-51 Mustang “Bunny” again roars around the pylons. And this year along with our P-63 Kingcobra “Pretty Polly”. The first time in decades for a Kingcobra at the Reno Air Races!

We are reaching out to all of you, we are committed, but need your help. We have great perks for as little as $25 on up to our Platinum Sponsor Level. You can even fly in “Bunny” too. So please check it out and help us out! We promise you great fun as you are a Red Tails Kingcobra Team Member! Thanks! Click right here for our Indiegogo https://igg.me/at/RedTailsReno2018


The Spitfire

Mick Dawson talking about the Spitfire. Mick was a young man in England working at an airbase during World War II. One of the very very interesting people I get to meet shooting photographs and video and managing the social media for the Palm Springs Air Museum.

Climb in the cockpit of the Supermarine Spitfire yourself! This is an incredible opportunity! The British fighter aircraft that is a hero of the Battle of Dunkirk and the exciting motion picture “Dunkirk”!

Open Cockpit Saturday June 30th from 10:30am – 12:30pm at the Palm Springs Air Museum. Check it out!


The Missouri From A Cessna

Have you been watching all of my aviation photography and video work with the Palm Springs Air Museum. Here is the USS Missouri in Long Beach from the mid 1980’s when most of my flying was in a Cessna 172.

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Berlin Airlift 70 Years Ago

I really enjoy the purpose when my videos and photos get to share both excitement and history. Here with the Palm Springs Air Museum.

The Berlin Airlift 70 years ago started on June 24, 1948. From our Palm Springs Air Museum friend, Brooks Wachtel, Emmy Award Winner and Co-Creator of the epic History Channel series “DogFights”. More below…

“The Soviet Union began the Berlin Blockade. It was an attempt to gain control over the allied sections of the city by preventing food from reaching the inhabitants.

The allies answered with the largest airlift in history, flying in supplies on the gamble that the Soviets would not launch an overt and provocative attack on these aircraft.

By April, 1949, they were flying in more supplies than had previously been delivered by rail. In May the humiliated Soviets gave up and opened the land routes.”

In total, the USAF delivered 1,783,573 tons and the RAF 541,937 tons, nearly two-thirds of which was coal, on 278,228 flights to Berlin. The Royal Australian Air Force delivered 7,968 tons of freight and 6,964 passengers during 2,062 sorties. The C-47s and C-54s together flew over 92 million miles in the process, almost the distance from Earth to the Sun. At the height of the Airlift, one plane reached West Berlin every thirty seconds. Pilots came from the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and South Africa.

The C-47 “What’s Up Doc?” is a veteran of the Berlin Airlift. And right now in the air-conditioned hangars of the Palm Springs Air Museum where you can watch “Doc” undergoing it’s routine annual inpsection. That is something you will not see everyday. Check it out!


05:34 Japanese Ships Detected

I am also the Social Media Manager for the Palm Springs Air Museum. And it is with great pride that I have the opportunity to share not only my own photographs and video created for the Air Museum, but also stories like this from very important times in history…

05:34 Japanese ships detected by a United States Navy Catalina PBY from Midway Island June 4, 1942, 76 years ago. And so began the most decisive naval battle in the Pacific Theater of World War II. You will soon be able to join with us in our ongoing restoration to flying of our own PBY Catalina. But for now…

The Battle Of Midway described by our Palm Springs Air Museum friend, Emmy Award Winner, Brooks Wachtel, co-creator of the iconic History Channel series “DogFights”…

The Battle of Midway began. It was the first major victory for America over Japan during World War II. The battle ended on June 6 and blunted Japanese expansion in the Pacific. The Japanese navy never recovered from the loss of 4 fleet carriers and their highly trained aviators. Walter Lord called it, “the incredible victory.”

For the Japanese, losing the carriers and their irreplaceable pilots and aircrews was symbolic of the insurmountable problem that would doom them to defeat. The Japanese economy was less than 4% of the world’s industrial output while the United States was near 30%. It was estimated that the United States had 10 times the war making potential of Japan.

A war of attrition would be fatal to Japan.

Their only hope was a quick victory. Admiral Yamamoto, who had been to America, told his superiors that the Japanese Navy could run riot for six months and then he could promise nothing. Midway was six months to the day after Pearl Harbor.

Before Pearl Harbor the chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Stark – with great prophesy – warned the Japanese Ambassador, “If you attack us we will break your empire before we are through with you. While you may have initial success due to timing and surprise, the time will come when you too will have losses but there will be this great difference. You not only will be unable to make up your losses but you will grow weaker as time goes on; while on the other hand we not only will make up our losses but will grow stronger as time goes on. It’s inevitable that we shall crush you before we are through with you.”

It was a blueprint of what happened in the course of the war.