Category: Blog

Looking Up: Waiting

July 2, 2012.      As with most works, there is a tremendous amount of testing, sketching, waiting, and thinking.  When will the real work get to start?  Can’t wait.

Birds 6, Dan 0

July 1, 2012.      Within a day I realized that I hadn’t built a camera platform, but had created the perfect tree for meadow birds to perch on and also view the surroundings.  Both of us are looking for “something good.”  Their droppings are quickly messing with equipment, though I do appreciate their gifts to me.  Every morning when I go out for tests they have left behind a few grasshopper legs on the tripod heads for me to munch on. This Blue Bird is the busiest, but Towhees are right behind. I was keenly aware that this work, […]

Looking Up: Camera Platform

June 29, 2012.      To create the time lapse sequences for “Looking Up: The Sky Over Penland,” a high and very stable platform was needed.   This platform will hold 1-3 cameras during any type of weather and will be used for the next 8 months.  That means through January, winter and high winds!

NCMA Aerial Balloon Photography: Dot Marks the Spot

June 8, 2012.      The expectation had always been to remove the shadow of the balloon from each collaged photograph, but after seeing these images (and many more), it’s clear that it can become an important formal or playful element that speaks of the process.

NCMA Aerial Balloon Photography: Shadow Surprise

June 7, 2012.      Whenever working on a new project there are inevitable surprises, some are problems and some are gifts.  The drama created by the shadows of trees, people, and artwork at the NCMA are one of the gifts.   It was totally a surprise and will clearly effect how the rest of the 6 month project will be photographed.

First Aerial Balloon Shoot at the NC Museum of Art

June 6, 2012.      This last weekend, we did the first aerial balloon photography for the “Looking Down:NCMA” piece for the North Carolina Museum of Art.  Other than some high winds and thunder storms, it was a beautiful weekend.  Lots of sun that caused crisp shadows.   The camera was walked around the entire campus at least once.

60 foot Tripod at the National Academy of Sciences

May 25, 2012.      The Imaging Research Center (IRC) at UMBC is creating an iPad app for visitors to explore and understand the gold-leaf painted dome of the Great Hall at the National Academy of Sciences.  The building, which was built in the 1920s and sits on the National Mall, was recently refurbished.

Balloon Aerial Photography Test 3

May 5, 2012.      Almost there.  This test was with a bigger balloon (5′), a more stable camera rig, and a camera set manually with intervalometer script and shooting RAW files.  These high resolution images are then collaged onto a low-res satellite image.  This detail of the final test collage does not give a true indication of the range of information available, so I have posted a zoomable version on 

Aerial Photography Balloon Camera Rig #2

May 5, 2012.      Here is a quick video from the Oak Branch Series that describes a new version of a camera rig to hold a small point-and-shoot camera from a helium balloon.  This builds upon all the good work that The Public Laboratory ( has done in this area of balloon and kite photography for mapping purposes.  The refinement gives more control and stability of the camera as it is buffeted by the wind.  

0 to 60: The Experience of Time through Contemporary Art

April 9, 2012.      Co-organized by the North Carolina Museum of Art (NCMA) and the Penland School of Crafts, 0 to 60: The Experience of Time through Contemporary Art, is a collaborative, cross-disciplinary exhibition that explores the intersection of time with art, craft, and design. As part of this major exhibition, Dan Bailey is one of four artists selected to do a month long residency at Penland creating a two-part site-specific installation tentatively entitled, Looking Up | Looking Down. The bulk of this work will happen during the summer of 2012. In addition, Dan will be creating similar works for  the […]