Unsplash Image: Anton Repponen (Download)

Parasailing in Maui

Unsplash Untold #11 — Anton Repponen

Drew Coffman
Dec 15, 2016 · 5 min read

When I think of Maui, I think of black rock beaches, winding roads, and scenic tropical vistas.

I do not think about paragliders coming in for rocky landings in front of a fire-red sky. Yet that’s exactly what Anton Repponen has captured, in a photo submitted to Unsplash only a few months ago and already downloaded over 11,000 times. This wild photo seemed to be a perfect example of capturing a perfect moment— the image makes capturing a person flying through the air look effortless—so I reached out to Anton to learn more about how he captured this person in flight.

Anton was in Maui visiting his friend Igor, an old schoolmate from Estonia. Igor has lived in Maui for over a decade, and Anton says he visits frequently to get away from the bustle of his own life in New York City.

Anton and Igor’s drive to Maui, before the sun began to set

Here’s the story, as he tells it:

The mist rolling into Kula completely transforms the atmosphere (Download)

The two of them arrived at the location right as it began to grow dark, and Anton noted that fog was covering the entire slope. He realized that with the sun setting, the light looked as if it was breaking through the mist, and it was the perfect time for a photo shoot. Igor began to assemble his wing, and they prepped for some flying with little time to spare.

Igor setting up to fly

The image was captured with a Canon 5D Mark III and a Canon EF 70–200mm f/2.8L lens. The exposure was set to an exposure rate of 1/400 of a second and an ISO at 400. These settings, in Anton’s opinion, spelled trouble:

An outtake from the photoshoot

The low aperture was something that Anton believes adds to the photo, though he does wonder what it would have looked like with a higher depth of field:

The red misty sunlight makes Anton’s final photo look out of this world

Overall Anton is satisfied with the photo that he was able to get out of the shoot, and acknowledges one thing regarding taking once-in-a-lifetime images:

Great advice: Always be prepared, for when that next perfect capture comes your way.

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Drew Coffman

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Writer of Extratextuals.

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Behind the scenes building the open photography movement at Unsplash.