The author at “work.”
100m is about my maximum kite altitude so this map is a pretty decent resource for seeing if your region has KAP weather. 3.9m/s is about 9mph and that’s probably your minimum wind speed with a decent payload.

My Process

George R. Lawrence’s famous SF shot taken weeks after the 1906 earthquake. He used a stack of small kites strung together to lift a large camera on a timer.

The Rig

Many kites will work for KAP but rokkaku, deltas and box kites seem to be the favorites for their stability and wide wind speed range. For a decent payload you’ll probably need at least .5 square meter of sail.
You can get a very nice rugged and waterproof camera like this for about $150
Givin’ a lil’ kickstart
Simple slip loop on a bight, sometimes called a trucker’s hitch.
Tuna clips

Making Orthophotos

A bubble style panorama made with a rotating motion. For this to work, the camera needs to be mostly stationary while rotating. The farther away the subject is, the less important it is for the pictures to have been taken from the same spot.
An ortho image from Alameda CA. I’d like to fly a camera with a polarized filter to circumvent the glare off the water but those filters need to be manually rotated which would require a servo or remote.
A stitched perspective shot from Albany Bulb. You can see the image sort of fall away at the edges so this is not an ortho image. You could probably clip out the edges and use the middle.

Making 3D Meshes

You can’t measure accurate distances between these points until you scale them appropriately but when you do, this turns into a pretty nice altimeter for your camera after you’re done.
Sand is not an easy medium to record because it has a tendency to shift. This mesh was made with photos that were taken over the course of an hour so people, footprints and umbrellas moved a bit between the images and introduced error.

Alternatives to Meshroom:


Digital Elevation Model

Things I want to Try

Maps, conservation, insects, film, boats, scuba diving

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