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AeroTime is introducing a new project, called Planespotters around the world. Throughout the project, we will highlight one of the most intriguing crafts within the aviation industry, Planespotting. From capturing beautiful and rare aircraft as they touch down on the runway, to snapping a picture of a rare plane that some of us have always dreamt of seeing, planespotting truly showcases the most beautiful side of the industry – the planes that graze the skies above us.

We start our project with one of the most creative aviation photographers out there, Sebastian, or as he is better known in the community, @lumix_aviation. Based in Vienna, he began his adventures at Vienna International Airport with his camera fairly recently, just a year ago.

Yet some of the pictures are simply put, stunning.

(All pictures provided are courtesy of @lumix_aviation, follow him on Instagram right here)

What was your journey to becoming a plane spotter?

My uncle invited me to an event at Vienna International Airport (VIE), called „Spotter Safari“ in late 2018. It’s an event only for members of “Flughafenfreunde Wien”, where spotters are transported around the airport using a bus. This was the first time I was photographing an airplane.

From that moment my interest in aviation photography began and I started my dedicated Instagram account back in December 2018.

But I wouldn’t call me a typical plane spotter, as I am not collecting a particular airplane. I see myself as an aviation photographer – I try to capture airplanes from a unique angle and unique perspective, that no-one else tried before or is not typically capable of.

[ lumix_aviation]

What aircraft was the first that you’ve taken a picture of?

Well, the first aircraft that I took a picture of is probably the one I was flying with from Vienna to Heathrow to Vancouver – a British Airways Boeing 747-400. But the one photo why I started being interested in aviation is the one I was taking on my first spotting session with Emmanuel (@aeromanu). It’s a typical Airbus A320 departing out of Vienna directly above the ATC tower during sunset.

[ lumix_aviation]

Is there a picture that you tend to look back at and tell yourself “damn, that is one fine shot”?

The picture, which I even have on a canvas print, is a North American T-28 Trojan that I took during an airshow in Bad Vöslau. The scenery is pretty unique because you see 3 Patrouille-Reva in the background, the angle of the aircraft as well of the rotors was perfect. Well, everything about this photo was perfect to be the bucket shot of 2019!

[ lumix_aviation]

You’re based at Vienna – what are some of the unique aircraft that you managed to capture at the airport?

Sadly, not many. The last unique aircraft that landed in Vienna was an MD-11F from Lufthansa, yet I could not capture it, because I was on vacation. But I managed to take a picture of a Lufthansa Airbus A380 which landed in Vienna due to an emergency. Furthermore, during my first “Spotter Safari” I managed to capture an Emirates Airbus A380 with the “Year of Zayed 2018” livery. Some of the other unique examples are an IranAir Airbus A300, a private Boeing 727 and an Ilyushin IL-62 while I was in Bratislava, Slovakia.

[ lumix_aviation]

If you could take a shot of any aircraft and airline that is not flying anymore or doesn’t usually land at Vienna, which one it would be?

This is one really good question because it is really hard to answer. The important thing for me is, to not just spot this unique aircraft but also to capture it in a special surrounding like on the apron, or in a helicopter, without any other airplanes in the background. It needs to be different from other pictures of the same jet. But the aircraft that I would like to photograph would be Concorde, Air Gulf Falcon Boeing 747-SP, the Royal Jordanian Boeing 747-200 or a Lockheed L1011 TriStar.

[ lumix_aviation]

Outside of your home airport, Vienna, what’s your favorite airport to visit?

I have not been to many airports so far. Vienna (VIE), Salzburg (SZG) and Frankfurt (FRA), Warsaw-Chopin Airport (WAW) are some of the airports I have visited for dedicated spotting. But the one I like the most is probably Frankfurt, because you have so many possibilities and angles to capture heavies [wide-bodies – ed. note] almost every time.

What is your personal favorite aircraft?

There are two favorite aircraft, but I still cannot decide which one I like more. One is the De Havilland Canada Dash 8 Q400 which I had my first jumpseat experience on and the other is the Boeing 747, which I had my first and only long haul flight to Vancouver.

[ lumix_aviation]

Finally, what was the most surreal experience for you personally, as an aviation photographer?

The most surreal experience for me was when Rebecca, a first officer flying for Austrian Airlines, told me, I can fly with her on the jump seat on the De Havilland Canada Dash 8.

Everything was working perfectly. We were flying to Warsaw where we had a ground time of 2 hours. It was such an impressive experience, seeing pilots fly their airplane. It is indescribable how beautiful it is.

[ lumix_aviation]