It’s one thing to capture an incredible wingsuit photograph, but it’s another to do it with external flash. The precision required is insane—you need to capture someone flying straight at you ceaselessly, predict their trajectory and still manage to pull off the basic fundamentals of composition. If you want to see how that’s done, watch this video:
The photographer in question is Tristan Shu, a French extreme sports photographer who works out of the French Alps. For this image, he connected himself to a glider pilot and, dangling beside a mountain, waited for his moment to shoot a passing wingsuit flyer.
But Shu wasn’t content with just taking a regular old wingsuit shot, so instead Shu opted to lower his shutter speed immensely, perfectly exposing the cloudy sky beyond the mountains. The only way to keep the flyer visible, then, was to use an external flash in broad daylight.
The first time they tried the shoot, the wingsuit flyer, Guillaume Galvani, wasn’t close enough. They had to try a second take where Galvani flew so close they could have high-fived. They didn’t—but they did, at least, capture an incredible image.
“I like those moments—sharing it with friends that are making it possible. That’s why I’m a photographer.” — Tristan Shu
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