The Lawn is the center of Mr. Jefferson’s historic Academical Village at the University of Virginia. We took our Scholars’ Lab DIY aerial photography equipment to the Lawn on Sunday afternoon as part of the University Library’s effort to document the events surrounding President Sullivan’s resignation.
We’ve learned this kind of aerial photography is like farming, completely dependent on the weather. So we kept one eye on the sky as a strong summer thunderstorm cell loomed. We’ve dealt with wind before, but keeping the balloon out of the trees while walking through a crowd of over 1000 people with winds ranging 0-4 the Beaufort Scale was our challenge.
Calm winds yield a long straight string and a straight down view.
Gusty winds cause the camera to swing on its pendulum and we get a beautiful oblique view of lush green summer in Virginia.
The crowd gathers before the event. The Rotunda roof project accounts for the elaborate curved scaffolding.
Views from lower altitudes compress distances and make the crowd appear more dense.
While an overhead view shows people tend to stand in remarkably straight lines with impressively uniform spacing.
Blue tarps cover West Lawn roofs where chimney repairs are ongoing.
Existential Threats (and storms and wind and crowds) Don’t Scare Us, We’re Librarians!