For the last few days the weather has been excellent for aerial photography. I have been getting up early with my brother and we have been exploring the coastline around West Dover, East Dover and Peggy’s Cove with a Multiplex Easystar model airplane. The plane is flown using a tiny analog video camera and a 900 MHz video link. The vertical format aerial photos are recorded using a Canon Powershot SD780IS camera with the CHDK firmware and my Countdown Intervalometer script. Over the course of the average flight the plane will fly for 25 minutes and take about 600 photos.
It is amazing how far into the water you can see from a vertical format aerial photo. In some of the shoreline photos you can see almost 30 feet into the water.
I have had great success stitching the photos using the free program Microsoft ICE to create aerial mosaic images.
Also, it has been a lot of fun creating stereo pairs from the aerial images and viewing them as 3D anaglyph images. The distance the plane moves between taking two photos causes enough parallax for creating real stereoscopic 3D images.
If you want a closer view on any of the images below, click on them for an enlarged version.
This image of the Peggy’s Cove lighthouse came in 4th Place in the DPreview CHDK Photography Contest.
Stereoscopic 3D Photos
I have created a few stereoscopic 3D anaglyph images from several image pairs. The images should be viewed with Red / Cyan glasses. If you click on the image you can view a higher resolution version with more clarity. The parallax is slightly exaggerated so there is quite a bit of depth visible in the images. I used Apple’s Shake compositing program to create the anaglyph images by aligning the images and using a corner pin node to correct for the tipping of the airplane wing between photos.
Aerial Mosaic Image
I have had a lot of fun running batches of vertical format aerial photos though Microsoft ICE. It does a pretty decent job of automatically stitching the images. The mosaic below was stitched at 17,000 x 5700 pixels and has been reduced to 3000 x 1003 for viewing on the web. The aerial mosaic image covers a linear distance of just over a mile and is the result of stitching 28 photos.