Today is the 30th anniversary of my first published photograph. It also happened to be my first ride in a helicopter, and my first attempt at aerial photography.
My school had visit from a military helicopter and gave a few students a short ride around the surrounding area. I lived near the school, so there was just enough time to run home, grab my camera, a roll of film and try to catch the last ride of the day.
I was lucky. One of the helicopter crew saw my camera and suggested I wear the winchman’s harness. So for my first helicopter flight I sat on the floor with my legs dangling out while we flew around the town. I was more excited than scared. What really worried me was losing my shoes somewhere over the town, and how angry my mum would be if I lost them.
My aerial was published in The Wellington Weekly News. I think I got paid £2, which is about $3 for my first published shot. It was on page 7. Score!
It’s funny how life goes full circle. I had no idea I would end up shooting a lot more aerials.