Update: Jansen has requested that his photos be removed, as they are currently “being investigated for possible violations of sensitive information.”
US Army lieutenant Alexander Jansen has spent the past year serving in Afghanistan as a liaison officer, training the members of the Afghan National Army. During this time, he has been very involved in photography, using his DSLRs to capture what deployment is like through a soldier’s eyes. Read more…
A few hours ago, the official Facebook page of the First Army Division East posted the above photograph with the caption:
Soldiers of the 3rd Inf Reg continue to stand guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, despite the worsening weather conditions surrounding Hurricane Sandy. The tomb has been guarded continuously since 1948.
The powerful photograph instantly attracted tens of thousands of Likes and Shares, and began going viral online. Read more…
Check out this beastly camera used by Signal Corps during the Cold War. It featured a 100-inch infrared lens that was capable of seeing through over twenty miles of hazy air — perfect for capturing reconnaissance photographs of enemy strongholds. The camera was so massive that it required two people to operate: one to frame the shot, and one to snap the photo.
100-inches is 2540mm and the camera appears to use 4×5 large format film, so the equivalent 35mm focal length of this cannon-like lens is roughly 760mm. Read more…
U.S. Army soldier Alex Jansen is currently stationed in Afghanistan, and besides taking some great shots and posting them up on the Pentax forums, he also put together this video illustrating one of the reasons Pentax owners love their cameras: the dust and weather sealing.
He starts by heaping piles of sand on both his K-7 and K-5 to demonstrate their resistance to dust, and then, to show off the weather sealing, he rinses them off under running water in the shower. People who baby their cameras should be forewarned, clicking the play button is likely to make you cringe a few times.
Earlier this month the US Army published an article warning its soldiers that the ubiquitousness of geotagged photographs these days can present a serious security risk, citing a real-world example of something that happened back in 2007:
When a new fleet of helicopters arrived with an aviation unit at a base in Iraq, some Soldiers took pictures on the flightline, he said. From the photos that were uploaded to the Internet, the enemy was able to determine the exact location of the helicopters inside the compound and conduct a mortar attack, destroying four of the AH-64 Apaches.
Officer Kent Grosshans recommends disabling the geotagging feature on your phone (or camera) and double-checking your social media settings to see who you’re sharing location-based info with, regardless of whether you’re an enlisted soldier or a civilian.
If you’ve ever tried shooting in a dark location without using flash or a tripod, you probably know how difficult it can be to remove camera shake from your photos. Alex Jansen — a photography enthusiast who’s an officer in the US Army — has written up an awesome tutorial on how you can apply some of the tricks used by rifle shooters to shooting with a camera:
I am by no measures a “pro,” but I understand my fundamentals very well, and this specific set has been drilled into my head so many times that it is now second-nature. I am going to teach you how to “shoot” your camera like a high end rifle because at the end of the day, the fundamentals stay the same in every aspect.
If you’ve always wanted your own military-grade portable darkroom, today’s your lucky day! There’s a used US Army one for sale on eBay with the starting price of $4,500. The 4,500LB shelter contains 3 rooms with 614 cubic feet of space, and comes with all the darkroom equipment you need, including a fridge, film drying cabinet, film processors, sink, storage spaces, and an escape door! It even packs its own temperate water control system and heating/AC unit. You can find more photos here.