Featured Photographer: Johann Stürken

What got you into plane spotting?

There are two reasons: First off all I live just about 500m away from the short approach of 80% of all landings at the Airbus plant in Hamburg Finkenwerder, so I get to see A380 for all sorts of different airlines on a regular babis. The second reason is that in September 2011 the airport in Hamburg celebrated it's 100th birthday, where an A380 should land for the first time in Hamburg (we have two airports in Hamburg -- the commercial one and the Airbus one) and I went, enjoyed it and half a year later I started off doing planespotting, first at an awful level, but soon getting much better.

You've been planespotting all day what's the first thing you do when you get home?

Go to my notebook, start off the import of the photos into Lightroom and then have a proper meal again. Though I usually take some food with me, it's usually gone before I even get to the airport.

What website do you go to book your flights?

I usually book my flights on the operating airline's website, but when I look for the flights itself, I use amadeus.net, because they can show me everything.

Most memorable flight?

In August 2013 I was able to fly the first and so far only time, with an A380, G-XLEA on routeproving from Frankfurt to London Heathrow and was the only passenger allowed up in the upper deck to take photos.

Photographer who has had significant influence over you as an aviation photographer?

There isn't any photographer who had much influence on me as an aviation photographer, but my dad had a lot of influence on me, as he taught me the basic skills of photography and also gave me my first DSLR, a Nikon D80, which I still have, for the use as airshows, where I don't want to change my lenses all the time.

Airline and Aircraft you most want to fly?

That's a good questions, because there are a lot of airlines and aircraft that I would like to fly, but I think it's probably the Emirates A380. I've probably spotted 80% of their fleet, worked in some of them, but still haven't flown them.

What airports are on the top on your spotting to do list?

Toulouse, because it is the 'sister-airport' of my home airport Hamburg-Finkenwerder and Frankfurt, because I've only been there once so far, but back then, the quality of my photos was very poor, but I can still remember how great it was (spotted my first ever Dreamliner over there).

Whats in your camera bag?

My camera bag is the Vanguard Skyborne 51. You can fit a lot inside, but can still go on long trips, plus your back doesn't get sweaty, which I grew to appreciate on a trip to India last christmas.

What software do you edit your photos with?

Adobe Lightroom 5.4

Last holiday destination?

South-East India last christmas. Great photo opportunities

Standout day of planespotting?

Great weather at Heathrow, 27L departures at the Esso petrol station then change at 3pm to the mighty Myrtle Avenue for 27L landings until sunset.

When you go plane spotting you can't leave the house without?

A large bottle of water, at least 2 lenses and a camera cleaning kit.

Goal for 2014?

Get more serious about school, to get a good IB result next year, to study aerospace engineering, after my gap year.