Kite photography is getting its due. Paleontologists used the hobby-esque technique (attaching digital cameras to kites) to study a span of fossilized footprints across 12 acres of the Arabian Desert. Individual footprints (average 15 inches wide) were too small to see via satellite. With thousands of images captured by kite, a detailed mosaic was made and confirmed their hunch: it’s a trail of a seven-million-year-old herd of elephants!
Perhaps the most famous kite aerial photograph was of San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake, taken by George Lawrence. It’s a 160-degree panorama from a kite taken 2000 feet in the air above the Bay that showed the entire city on a single 17x48 inch contact print. Lawrence sold each for $125 and made at least $15K (in 1906 dollars) from the one image. The camera weighed 49 pounds.
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