Aerial Archives

Aerial and Portrait Photographer Herb Lingl

Herb Lingl is a San Francisco bay area based aerial and portrait photographer and a commercial pilot.

©,  aerial photograph fog moving over the Marin Headlands toward San Francisco, AHLE0192

Past projects include a night time aerial light pollution photographic survey in Arizona, night time aerial photography for the City of Palo Alto's Centential Celebration for which he triggered 30,000 watts of strobe lights his team positioned on the ground from a helicopter, books of aerial photography with Robert Cameron about Mexico City entitled Above Mexico City and La Ciudad de Mexico desde Arriba and extensive aerial photography and video of San Francisco bay and other portions of California, New York, Florida and Central America.

©,  aerial photograph Virgin America Airlines, AHLB3842 ©,  aerial photograph Virgin America Airlines, AHLB3842

Herb created the still air to air photography for the launch of Virgin America Airlines from a Lear 25 aircraft and documented the roll out at the Mojave Air and Space Port of Virgin Galactic's White Knight Two, the aircraft used to lift the SpaceShipTwo spacecraft to release altitude. To see a selection of photographs Herb created for the launch of Virgin America, please visit aerial photographs of Virgin America US launch.

©,  aerial photograph California Wild cover, San Francisco salt pond, AHLB2958 ©,  aerial photograph Bay Nature cover, San Francisco salt pond

California Wild, the publication of the California Academy of Sciences and the quarterly magazine Bay Nature have published his aerial studies of the San Francisco bay salt ponds. For additional information about Herb's work for magazines please visit aerial photography for magazines. His work has been licensed extensively by Aerial Archives and other agencies.

©,  aerial photograph Sacramento delta infrared, AHLB2300 ©, Aerial Visionaries, Herb Lingl, Rusty Schweickart, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

Herb has conducted numerous workshops and seminars on aerial photography, the business of stock photography, special techniques using Polaroid film and flying tailwheel aircraft.

He organized an event entitled Aerial Visionaries which took place at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and featured presentations by astronauts Story Musgrave and Rusty Schweikart and a number of leading aerial photographers. The event was hosted by the American Society of Media Photographers and the Explorers Club and was sponsored by Eastman Kodak, Hasselblad, Aerial Archives and several other firms. For additional details about the event, please consult Aerial Visionaries.

At the China General Aviation Forum at the Beijing Capital International Airport Herb presented An Introduction to Aerial Imaging Business Opportunities. At one of the Kodak Aerial Imaging Training Seminars in Rochester, New York, Herb presented Aerial Infrared Sediment Studies.

Numerous venues have displayed Herb's still aerial photography, including the San Francisco International Airport in the Louis A. Turpen Aviation Museum in the international terminal which displayed his Aerial Aesthetics exhibit.

Herb has been recognized for excellence in aerial photography, and his work has been exhibited in galleries, museums and is in private collections. Recognitions include the Epson Aerial Photographer of the Year award.

Aerial motion projects include creating the footage for the animation that was used to market the condominiums in San Francisco's One Rincon Hill tower, documenting a multi-agency emergency terrorist response training excercise in San Francisco Bay which included the participation of Federal, State and municipal agencies, and creating a georeferenced video acquisition of a line of Pacific Gas and Electric powerlines that was integrated with LiDAR data.

Herb prefers flying tailwheel aircraft and seaplanes and ferries aircraft for clients provided that he can acquire imagery during the ferry flight.

©,  aerial photograph from the Stearman through flying wires ©, map of Herb Lingl ferry flight Princeton to Panama, AHLB3860

Among these flights are ferrying a Citabria from Princeton, NJ to Panama City, Panama; a Stearman from the Houston, Texas metro area to northern California and an EAA Biplane from Tulsa, OK to the Philadelphia, PA area. For additional information about Herb's aircraft ferrying services, please visit Tailwheel Aircraft Ferry Pilots.

Herb is the director of Aerial Archives which licenses current and historical aerial photography and satellite imagery including aerial photography that Herb created. He is the curator of Airport Muse which specializes in creating art exhibits for airport venues and the director of Tailwheel Aircraft Ferry Pilots.

Herb began making portraits when he first picked up a camera as a teenager and continues to develop the scope that work.

© Herb Lingl/,  studio portrait of Sarah Farnsworth, AHLB4461

He refined his understanding of studio lighting during the time he was building his aerial photography business.

Many of his original aerial photography clients were commercial real estate brokerages. These firms insisted that in order to obtain the assignment to shoot the aerial photographs he also create exterior and interior photographs of the properties they were marketing. Herb was making these photographs in the film days. Since film is much less forgiving of poor lighting than are the digital cameras of today, he was forced to learn how to light subjects and spaces. Interior photography required so much gear that he always hired at least one assistant for interior shoots, sometimes two.

© Herb Lingl/,  California State Assembly group panoramic portrait, AHLC2221

The California State Legislature retained Herb to create portrait photography of legislature members and panoramic portrait photography of the assembled members for the legislature's publications.

Over the years, Herb has had the opportunity to photograph women in San Francisco to illustrate California fashion for a Japanese magazine, numerous pilots, mechanics and other individuals in the aviation industry, extraordinary models and numerous well known individuals.

In the late 1980s and early 1990s Herb created a series of photo impressions from Polaroid SX-70 film. He manipulated the emulsion of the film once it was ejected from the Polaroid camera. The Commonwealth Club in San Francisco, Booz Allen and Hamilton and several other venues exhibited that work. Polaroid Corporation purchased prints for its corporate art collection and the Museum at Checkpoint Charlie purchased for its collection his photo impression of Checkpoint Charlie at night which he created before the Berlin wall came down.

Herb loves teaching. In college he had the opportunity to learn an exceptionally effective language teaching methodology directly from Professor John Rassias. He had a chance to use that method to teach college language students throughout his time at college. To learn more about Professior Rassias, please visit John Rassias.

Herb is particularly interested in teaching young people about aviation. He serves as the education director of the Clear Lake Flying Club, a teaching organization based at Clear Lake in northern California that is in its early stages of development. Please visit Clear Lake Flying Club for more information.

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