Chicago by Blimp (Apologies to Thomas Dolby)

Hardly an earth-shattering post this time.  Often, photographing aviation themes can be a case of frustration as you try and aim to be somewhere when something is happening.  This situation is a little different.  I was happily sitting in my living room when I looked out of the window and saw a blimp briefly pass between two buildings in the distance.  Blimps do occasionally show up in the city, usually providing aerial coverage of some sporting event or other.

I decided to grab the camera and see if it came any closer.  I got my gear and waited for the blimp to come up the shoreline towards us.  Sure enough, it appeared between some more buildings heading in just the right direction.  Then, it turned around and headed back the way it had just come.  Crap!  Where was it going next?  I started watching the gap I had first seen it in.  Nothing for a while.  I got distracted by a shot of an Aston Martin parked in the front of the Trump and looked up to see it just passing out of sight in the gap I was supposed to be watching.

Now, can I be patient and wait for it to come back again?  Sure I can.  I waited – and waited – and waited.  Nothing.  I was beginning to think it had gone when I spotted its reflection in the IBM building.  It was right behind us!  This guy is sneaky!

Now I had to wait again.  Would he continue on that course and come out the other side of us or reverse again?  This time he continued in a predictable fashion and popped out amongst the buildings north and east of us.  I grabbed a few shots as he headed south again and then returned to what I was doing.  Hardly great shots and probably not worth the effort (unless DirecTV decide to give me something for publicizing their own publicity machine) but I guess I am a bit of a victim of anything flying.  Also, I was surprised to see just how quick that blimp could be when he wanted to get moving!

4 thoughts on “Chicago by Blimp (Apologies to Thomas Dolby)

  1. Hayman

    We get the Zeppelin flying around work all the time, when the weather is good. Of course we’re not allowed to do any photography on site. I assume you saw the news about the tragic Goodyear blimp crash in Germany?

    1. Rob Post author

      The Zeppelin was here yesterday as it happens. Must be touring away from the Bay Area for a bit. I did hear about the crash. Just when they are planning on replacing then too!

  2. Gary Edwards


    I was surprised that when I asked I got a camera pass with no problem – helps that I’m known to help the company shooters when they can’t handle the volume of lunchtime retirement parties. Anyway, security didn’t want to be bothered with me coming back and made it permanent.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *