How Do You Photograph a Jet Flying 300-400mph? Throw 30,000W of Flash at It!

Yuri Arcurs, the world’s top-selling microstock photographer, will go to great lengths to prove he’s right, and the video above is a great case in point for that. He wanted to prove that he could flash freeze a fighter jet at full speed, and he got that shot. All he needed was approximately 30,000W of fill flash… no big deal.

For those unfamiliar with how studio lighting usually works, 30,000W is as much as 100 times more flash than you’re going to typically use in a regular studio setting. So much flash power is being thrown at this jet that the people on the ground can actually feel the heat from the lights.

Apparently, the project started as “a heated in-house discussion about flash speeds [and] ended up becoming a rather BIGGGG experiment…” An experiment that ended with Arcurs getting his shot and proving his point:


And lighting wasn’t even the only challenge Arcurs had to overcome. Many commenters on both YouTube and Reddit ridiculed his choice to use a Hasselblad because of its crazy long shutter delay. Arcurs responded to critics on YouTube by saying:

Reasoning for using the Hassy: 1/800s sync speed over 1/200-1/250s sync for Nikon/Canon. I can plan my way out of a shutter delay, but not a slow sync speed.

So what do you think? Was this just overkill, or as one Redditor put it, “highly impractical and underwhelming”? Or did you enjoy Arcurs’ video and think the final shot was worth the trouble? Also, how would you have approached this challenge differently? Let us know in the comments down below.

(via Reddit)