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The pilots have the best view on board the aeroplane. Wide panoramic views of the earth beneath and the stars above.
Sitting there, listening to the jabber on the radios and checking the systems and instruments. Looking outside and see the beauty of the earth pass by.

With my photography from the cockpit I hope to show you some of the amazing views we encounter both on our way to the stratosphere and back to the runway.

As a little boy I was always looking up to the sky. There I saw the planes fly.
My dad and granddad were both hot air balloon pilots, so I had the chance to get up in the sky at a young age.
A few years later I started my flying school and started working at my first airline job. Now I’m a captain and still enjoying every bit of it.

Approaching Ibiza

Approaching Ibiza – Spain

As a photographer you always want that perfect light and view.
We travel the world to capture amazing views during the best light or even at night.
I’m lucky to be in a cockpit, because when the light is good and there are some clouds the views can be amazing.
That beautiful soft light during sunset, with the night approaching as a dark band in the sky to the east, is something that excites me as a photographer.
The night can be quite amazing as well. Capturing the stars and milky way from 38.000 ft is something special.
On clear nights you get a good view of the Milky Way, which is barely visible with the naked eye in our country because of the light pollution.

Night shots during landings are challenging but when it all falls together, you can achieve some beautiful results.
Personally I like these kind of images the most. A high workload in a very dynamic surrounding captured in all it’s calmness.
The runway lights seen as light beams flashing through the windows, seconds before touch down.

One of the best quotes to describe the feeling when you fly is one of Leonardo da Vinci:

” Once you have flown,
you will walk the earth with
your eyes turned skyward.
For there you have been, and
there you long to return.”

Sunsets can truly be amazing!

Sunset from high above

Sunset with some fantastic cloud formations below us.

Last light of the day.

My copilot flying the airliner

Boeing 787 contrail.

Boeing 787 crossing our path with a beautiful lit contrail.


Panoramic views
Wide panoramic views of the world.

Pilots view

Cloud breaking

Sunrise over Vinkeveen

Sunrise and a rain shower – perfect.

Funchal – Madeira, a very challenging airfield.


Blue hour

The night can be seen as a dark band.

Cockpit sunset

Boeing 737-800 cockpit.

Jet engine at sunset

These baby’s give us the power to fly.

Contrail Boeing 777

Boeing 777 overtaking us.

Welcome at 11 km altitude

Crossing the coast line of Turkey.

Approaching Zanzibar

Landing in Zanzibar.

Cloud surfing

Cloud surfing.

Seconds before landing.

[av_image src=’https://www.martijnkort-photography.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Noctilucent_clouds.jpg’ attachment=’6161′ attachment_size=’full’ align=’center’ styling=” hover=” link=” target=” caption=” font_size=” appearance=” overlay_opacity=’0.4′ overlay_color=’#000000′ overlay_text_color=’#ffffff’ animation=’no-animation’][/av_image] Noctilucent clouds

Every summer, something strange and wonderful happens high above the north pole. Ice crystals begin to cling to the smoky remains of meteors, forming electric-blue clouds with tendrils that ripple hypnotically against the sunset sky. Noctilucent clouds-a.k.a. “NLCs”- (or Night Clouds) are a delight for high-latitude sky watchers and the pilots who fly at night in the northern part of the world.

Noctilucent clouds are Earth’s highest clouds. Seeded by meteoroids, they float at the edge of space more than 80 km above Earth’s surface. The clouds are very cold and filled with tiny ice crystals. When sunbeams hit those crystals, they glow electric-blue.

You can read more about it here: Link

I hope you have enjoyed the photo’s and that I was able to give you a feeling of being there with us.

If you want to see more of my work, please follow along on Instagram @martijn_kort or @flightdeck_views , 500px or Facebook.
You can also see more of my (aviation) photography here on my website.

I hope to see you soon on board!


All photo’s are made during non sterile flight phases or with a remote camera.
The safety of the flight was and will never be jeopardised by taking these photo’s.


Author Martijn.Kort

Fine art photographer focusing on architecture and cityscapes as well as capturing unique moments from the cockpit. Writing about photography techniques and sharing reviews. Ambassador for both ZEISS Netherlands and Nisi Filters. If you like my work, consider following me on Instagram!

More posts by Martijn.Kort

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