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Senior Photographer Chris Rose's favorite shoots

“Growing up, we always had cameras in the house,” said Senior Photographer Chris Rose, explaining both his mother and grandfather were avid photographers who encouraged Chris and his sister to take photos whenever possible. When the time came to choose a major and minor in college, “graphic design and photography were my clear choice,” he said. Soon after, he joined the staff of AOPA in 1993 as a graphic designer, and continued to do freelance photography on weekends. As AOPA and its number of media outlets increased, so did the association’s need for photography. In 2008, with mentorship from AOPA Senior Photographer Mike Fizer, Rose transitioned into the role of photographer, and then to senior photographer in 2017.

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Chris Rose

“Honor Flight,” September 2019 'AOPA Pilot': Every so often I get to participate in an event that not only combines excitement and historical significance but has a personal and emotional significance as well. As I photographed the people, places, aircraft, and veterans the week of the seventy-fifth anniversary of D-Day, I was reminded of the many hours spent hunting, fishing, and camping with my grandfather, and his stories of combat on the beaches and towns that I was now visiting. As an accomplished photographer himself, he inspired me greatly and even gave me my first 35mm camera. After crossing the channel the prior day aboard the C–47 'Miss Virginia', I found myself walking the beach, camera in hand, on the evening of June 6 when I received a text from my mom that simply said, “Dad would be so proud that you were there for this.” I will always be proud and grateful that I witnessed and photographed such a meaningful event. (Canon 1DX mk II, 35mm, 1/1600, f1.8, ISO 320) “Cuba: Visitors Welcome,” March 2017 'AOPA Pilot': Cuba had long been a bucket-list destination for me. Several attempts to legally travel there in the past had resulted in last-minute red tape that forced cancelation. Finally, in early 2017, AOPA Senior Content Producer Ian J. Twombly and I got the green light and flew a Beechcraft Bonanza the 106 miles from Key West, Florida, to Havana, Cuba. It was worth the wait. Havana is a well-worn city filled with friendly people, vibrant colors, music, amazing food—and yes, lots of classic cars. For the photographer, the opportunities are limitless. As an American, being able to explore this beautiful country was a unique privilege I won’t soon forget. (Canon 1DX, 102mm, 1/250, f5.6, ISO 250) “A Pilot’s Playground,” February 2019 'AOPA Pilot': Only a country as amazingly beautiful as New Zealand could make you step off a 19-hour flight and say “yep, totally worth it.” If photographers (and pilots) somehow created a magical land where every possible environment existed in a perfect form, that’s New Zealand. A 90-minute photo flight on the South Island takes you over dense forests, snow-capped mountains, volcanos, white sand beaches, and bustling cities. It is spectacular and unmatched for a photo location. (Canon 1DX, 102mm, 1/80, f14.0, ISO 100) “88 Magical Aerial Miles,”August 2011 ‘AOPA Pilot’: A WACO YMF-5D catches the first morning light over Canyonlands National Park near Moab, Utah. (Canon 5D mk II, 50mm, 1/160, f9.0, ISO 400) “Doing the Lindy Hop,” September 2017 ‘AOPA Pilot’: A ‘Spirit of St. Loui’s replica begins its turn back to the Old Reinbeck Aerodrome in Red Hook, New York. (Canon 1DX, 55mm, 1/125, f4.0, ISO 320) “Like a Mirage,” March 2016 'AOPA Pilot': A few of the many creative costumes at Burning Man 2015. (Canon 1D mk IV, 24mm, 1/500, f5.0, ISO 125) “Hope Has Wings,” October 2016 'AOPA Pilot': Ask any group of photographers what their top photo destination would be, and the majority would likely have Africa near the top of their list. For us, Uganda and the Congo were our specific destinations. Senior Features Editor Julie Summers Walker and I traveled by Cessna Caravan to remote jungle clinics, chaotic urban centers, and peaceful mountain villages. These countries are often characterized by the ever-present poverty and political turmoil. But amid these hardships are friendly, resilient people and some of the most breathtaking landscapes I have ever photographed. (Canon 1D mk IV, 200mm, 1/1600, f2.8, ISO 125) “Chasing the Sun,” November 2017 'AOPA Pilot': Sometime in early 2017, 'AOPA Pilot' staff were brainstorming story ideas when someone said, “Wouldn’t it be cool to shoot an Eclipse jet during the upcoming solar eclipse?” This gave way to a full-length feature that would send editors and photographers across the country to capture aviation’s role in the event on August 21 of that year. AOPA Editor at Large Dave Hirschman and I would try to pull off the eclipse/Eclipse jet shoot. Thirty minutes prior to the eclipse, Dave and I in a Beech Bonanza and pilot Eric Whyte in One Aviation’s Eclipse 550 circled the skies near Carbondale, Illinois. Because the brief time of peak eclipse would have to align with both aircraft in formation, we would get one opportunity lasting two to three seconds to get the shot; we did, and it remains one of my favorite photographs to this day. (Canon 1DX mk II, 35mm, 1/100, f4.0, ISO 400) “One Patient at a Time,” August 2015 'AOPA Pilot': Dr. Randy Rizor awaits his next patient at a clinic in Cap Haitien, Haiti. (Canon 5D mk III, 22mm, 1/40, f4.0, ISO 500) The new Extra NG goes “smoke on” above coastal South Carolina. (Canon 1DX mk II, 32mm, 1/160, f4.0, ISO 125) “A Scooter for Today,” June 2017 ‘AOPA Pilot’, Turbine Edition: A Douglas A-4 Skyhawk streaks across the sky of Florida’s Space Coast. (Canon 1DX, 67mm, 1/1250, f5.0, ISO 160) “Time Traveler,” April 2014 'AOPA Pilot': A Beech 18 on straight floats reflects the last light before sunset above the Florida marshland. (Canon 5D mk III, 24mm, 1/80, f4.0, ISO 125)

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