A Phoenix Burning


One of the most welcome signs of fall in our area is the return of the hot air balloons.  The September sky is often speckled with dots of color, and festivals are the highlights of our weekends.

This past weekend was the Sunkiss Balloon Festival, a small gathering of balloons that has become a kickoff of the season.   Zan got the first ride of his life on Saturday while the family drove around all the back streets chasing him through town.  🙂

Here he is at liftoff.

A few more shots from the evening…

A balloon is filled with air with a high power fan, and then the air is heated with the propane burners…the heat radiating from those burners is intense.  I’m not sure how that man stood that close to it for as long as he did.


In every phase…

And check out this little cutie patootie!

The real fun begins in a couple of weeks if the weather cooperates.  🙂


And for a wonderful blog post about the festival, complete with stunning photographs that put my pathetic little snapshots to shame, check out Barre.Me .  There are some real treasures over there.


11 responses

  1. Hmmm…thinking….
    I wonder if I should rent a fisheye for the occasion????

    September 15, 2010 at 7:41 am

    • Sure, go for it! Fisheyes are fun! Well, I like your “pathetic little snapshots”. Use that site to improve on your photos. Which are not bad.

      Are they having a balloon glow? I have yet to see it here in Syracuse which kicks off the summer for us. 🙂

      September 15, 2010 at 2:03 pm

      • Thanks Scott. 🙂
        Not sure if they are doing Moonglow? I can’t find it on the schedule, although they have done it in the past. Just hoping the weather is better this year than it was last year.

        September 15, 2010 at 5:53 pm

  2. -S

    Thanks for the link. I love this last shot, it trumps many of the photos I have shot that day with my fancy camera. I couldn’t take too many photos of people with my ultra-wide lens (distortion), you nailed this one.

    September 15, 2010 at 8:54 am

    • You are very welcome Sebastian! Thanks for stopping by!
      That little girl putting one teeny tiny finger up against the gigantic balloon was just begging to be captured. Just glad I was paying attention. 🙂

      September 15, 2010 at 5:55 pm

  3. Here is the first (of many I’m afraid) autumn-storm right now – but send those balloons over here SOON on a sunny quiet day – I WANT TO TRY THAT!!! 😉

    September 15, 2010 at 5:04 pm

    • My husband took some neat pics with his camera phone which I will share once I can get my hands on them. 🙂

      September 15, 2010 at 5:56 pm

  4. Ooooh, so jealous! Hot air balloons are so magical and fun to photograph! That little girl is precious!

    Check your camera’s color settings…for images like this, a setting of ‘Vivid’ works really well. You may also need to use spot metering if the day is as bright as this day was. Underexposing could also help to get the blue sky really blue.

    September 16, 2010 at 4:08 pm

    • Thanks for the tips Tracy! GREAT tip on the metering…I never think to check that. Thanks for the reminder. 🙂

      September 16, 2010 at 8:45 pm

  5. LOL at the little girl… Wouldn’t she have got a shock if it had popped… lol… Great selection of shots KD…

    September 17, 2010 at 2:55 pm

  6. Pingback: SunKiss Balloon Festival 2010 | barre.me, photos by Sébastien Barré

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