I’ve always had a love for flying. Aside from the obvious miracle of physics that allows us to cruise above the clouds to get to our destination more quickly than any other mode of transportation, there is the riveting beauty of the ascent. Flying out of San Francisco airport, the seemingly longish drive from my home in Marin County – across one bridge, through one city and over three different freeways – fits neatly in the frame of the airplane’s portal window at about 10,000 feet. The world looks significantly different from up there. I can discern cars and boats and watch their path as if I’m looking at an incredible live action three dimensional map. It is a wonderful perspective that changes the way I see the world.
When we view the images captured in the field by our National Geographic photographers our vision is extended to what is occurring in front of the lens. What’s missing is the 10,000 foot perspective of how much terrain the photographers have to traverse to capture their images.
As I was producing last weeks story on Haiti, I was working with a company called Tomnod to utilize their astounding technology to add a perspective to our story that has never before been offered. A view from space of photographer Ben Horton’s movement on the ground in Haiti. It is an additional dimension that adds a revolutionary and thrilling element to the story.
To experience Ben’s adventure in Haiti simply download and install the small Google Earth plugin for your browser and see Ben’s trip from an extraordinary point of view. Use the Before and After buttons to compare the scene before and after the earthquake.