I wrote this piece for a recent magazine article but they only grabbed a sentence so rather than waste what I wrote, figured it may be of interest to some with the upcoming Avalon Airshow. The most common question I get asked is, “What gear do you use?” I’m a Canon shooter and use 2 bodies; a 1DX Mark II + 500mm f4.0 II lens + 2.0x Extender III and a 5D Mark IV + 100-400 II lens + 1.4x Extender III. The 5D IV is great for take-offs, formations and larger aircraft and the 1DXII is used for single aircraft at dynamic angles without cropping. My biggest tip is practice. Practice until you can't get it wrong. Get to know your camera and experiment. Learn what each setting does and how it effects your images. If you have a local airfield, spend some time each week practicing as a big event can spell disaster for those unprepared. I keep my camera settings simple and shoot high speed continuous, AI Servo mode with shutter priority, auto ISO and 61-point auto selection auto focus. For take-offs I shoot 1/50th/sec to get a full disc. Aircraft in flight I use 1/100th for props, 1/250th for turboprops, 1/1250th for jets and 1/30th for rotorcraft. If starting out, aim for 1/320th sec and lower it once you hone your technique. Light plays a huge factor in the quality of photos. Overcast days usually result in flat, uninspiring images and bright blue skies with the sun at your back is best. Golden hour light, fluffy clouds, smoke or backlit subjects can produce some amazing images. Crop images to ‘rule of thirds’ and don’t be afraid to break the norm. Chopping off wings can give you extra wow factor provided it’s obvious in composition. I shoot in RAW format as I can recover detail that would otherwise be lost. Specifically adjusting shadows and highlights can transform photos from dark blobs to works of art. White balance and colour profiles are key. My RAW editor is Adobe Lightroom and I use templates to edit large numbers of images quickly and consistently. Lastly, use the power of Facebook and Instagram to get your photos seen by more than just family and friends. It can be a powerful networking tool to broaden industry contacts and ultimately, your audience. Duncan Fenn. www.duncanfenn.com https://www.facebook.com/drfphoto/ Grumman Avenger VH-MML. Canon 5D4, Canon 100-400mm II + 1.4x extender. 280mm @ 1/60th sec, f/13, ISO 100. Robinson R44 VH-WDR. Canon 1DXII, Canon 500 II + 2.0x extender. 1000mm @ 1/50th sec, f/9, ISO 125. Boeing F/A-18 Hornet. A21-33. Canon 5D4, Canon 500II + 1.4x extender. 700mm @ 1/640, f/5.6, ISO 320. Wolf Pitts. Canon 5D4, Canon 100-400mm II + 1.4x extender. 560mm @ 1/50th sec, f/16, ISO 100. CAC Sabre. A94-352. Canon 5D4, Canon 500 II + 2.0x extender. 1000mm @ 1/1250th sec, f/9, ISO 500.