Over the 25 or so years I've been doing aerial photography, I've been asked on a number of occasions to shoot other aircraft in flight. As I fly microlights as well as GA aircraft I've shot many air to air shoots with microlights including Brian Milton's round the World flight and Simon Reeve's UK to Australia flight. I have also been very fortunate to be asked to do an air to air shoot in an RAF Dominie Jet formation. During the two and a half hour flight, except for take off and landing I don't think we were ever more than 15 feet apart! Once I'd got over the shock of how close we were, it was on with a wide angle lens and shoot away!
I've also done a shoot with two ex RAF display pilots flying Tiger Moths. Their precision in these old, hard to fly (well) aircraft was amazing.
Earlier this year I was fortunate to be asked to do an air to air photo-shoot with a lovely Pitts Special S1 Bi-plane, owned and flown by Richard Welch. Richard is a very successful aerobatics pilot and I had no worries at all flying in close formation with him.
It was one of the first shoots I'd done with the new Canon 6D. To record the shoot I mounted my GoPro Hero onto the 6D's hot shoe via a home made mount. The shutter sound you hear on the video is the actual sound of the camera and is not dubbed in afterwards!
My camera ship was a Cessna 172 from Rutland Flying School and was flown by my friend, club owner and instructor, Stephen Waddy. As usual I sat in the left hand (pilot's) seat as I find it much easier to operate from that side and also I think aircraft generally tend to look better in photos if they are flying left to right in the frame. As Stephen's an instructor he's very happy to fly in the right hand seat.
On the evening of the shoot there was a layer of cloud at around 2000ft so we decided that things would be much better above the cloud. After a detailed discussion on the ground between myself and the pilots of what we wanted to achieve and how to do it safely we were off..
If you are an aircraft owner and would like some air to air photos please ask as I love doing them!