Updated: Jan 3
Following on the success of our weekly “10 Questions With” segment, our team at APP have started up a new Monthly Spotter Feature on our website and Instagram profile, showcasing aviation enthusiasts based in Singapore and abroad. The concept and motivation behind this project is to bring the community closer together, and to shine a light on the community we coexist in with hopes of raising awareness with regards to our hobby and to provide a chance for all spotters to be seen both locally & internationally. In our first foray into the international aviation enthusiast community, we reached out to a lovely couple who both found their love and passion in aviation and in each other through plane-spotting.
Kicking off our first official article of 2023, our first featured spotters are Guillaume and Ine from Belgium, both seasoned spotters and had the opportunity to globetrot to capture some amazing aircraft shots. Guillaume and Ine primarily post their shots on Instagram (@belgianspotter and @belgian_spottergirl), so do check out their accounts and lend them your support!
Hello, you are...?
Guillaume: I'm Guillaume, 21 years old, and I work a full-time job at a transport company near Brussels Airport.
Ine: I'm Ine, also 21, and I'm a student at Ghent University College majoring in business/SME-management. Both of us are based in Belgium, and we frequently spot at Brussels Airport (BRU/EBBR)
Share some fun facts about yourself!
Ine: I have my CCA (EASA cabin crew attestation) and B737 conversion so I can work as a cabin crew member. There’s an IKEA near the airport so I sometimes convince Guim to go there…
Guillaume: I sometimes go to Ikea near the airport as Ine convinces me to do so.
How did you two meet? Ine: It was back in 2018, I discovered his planespotting account on Instagram and asked a questions about an A380 on there since I didn’t know a single thing about aviation. We started chatting and went on a date together eventually. We were friends until 2022 and now we’re a couple.
When did you begin spotting
Ine: August 16, 2020
Guillaume: April 22nd, 2017
What motivates you to spot? What keeps you interested in planespotting?
Ine: I actually lost motivation for a while because of personal reasons, and it’s still hard for me to go to the airport sometimes, but the passion is too big to just give up.
Sometimes I lose interest in the traffic at Brussels Airport, so then we visit some other airports such as AMS, FRA, CGN or LUX. It’s always nice to see some other planes and airlines.
Guillaume: I was always fascinated about flight and airplanes, as we travelled a lot back when I was a kid.
What gear (camera + lens) do you use
Ine: Nikon D3500 with 18-55mm lens and 70-300 lens
Guillaume: Nikon D7100 with Tamrom 150-600mm, Nikon 70-300mm and 18-105mm
What photo editing tools do you use, which is your favourite?
Ine: Lightroom and Photoshop, I like Lightroom more because Photoshop is more difficult. It takes some time to find your own editing style. If someone comments on your edits (in a proactive way), try to accept the advice to get better. If someone talks bad about your edits for being too creative or ‘technically’ incorrect, ignore them. To me, photography is an art and not a science.
Guillaume: Lightroom CC classic and photoshop. Editing photos is all about personal preference and personal taste, you are in control of what you edit, do what you want, but it doesn’t hurt to get tips from professionals, or watch youtube videos on how to improve your editing skills
Love for Airplanes
What is your favourite aircraft?
Ine: Boeing 777-300ER and Airbus A380, tough choice
Guillaume: Boeing 747 and MD-11
What is your favourite airline?
Ine: Emirates, but for variety in aircraft it’s British Airways
Guillaume: Hainan airlines and Brussels Airlines for service, United and KLM for fleet and livery
What is your favourite livery?
Ine: Brussels Airlines ‘Amare’ in Tommorowland Livery
Guillaume: Lufthansa Boeing 747-8 in retro livery, Cargolux Boeing 747-400F in retro livery, Emirates A380 in Dubai 2020 livery
Airport and spotting location
Ine: airside of course, but if I have to choose probably AMS Polderbaan take-off
Guillaume: airside, of next to an active runway, or a spot to see taxiing aircraft; ZRH and AMS for spots, LHR for traffic
What is your most interesting or insane experience you have while spotting?
Ine: Guim and I were spotting at AMS in Nov 2021 while we were waiting for the Emirates A380 inBlue expo dots livery. When it arrived, we noticed it was not the dots livery, but the FULL BLUE BRAND NEW EXPO LIVERY. That sure was a pleasant surprise.
Guillaume: same as Ine but also the last MD-11 takeoff, the AMS trip right before the first lockdown and the 2AM spotting session for a Boeing 747SP
Which shot are you most proud of?
Ine: Qatar B788 arriving at 25R at BRU during golden hour
Guillaume: Airforce One take-off/landing, and the last MD-11 face to face
To Round Off...
What tips would you give to aspiring spotters?
Ine: If you feel like your pictures aren’t nice, just keep on going. Every spotter has felt like quitting at one point in their career, and that’s ok. Also, don’t forget to sometimes put your camera away and just watch the airplanes take off/landing. We often forget how big and overwhelming those planes can be.
Guillaume: like Ine says, never give-up, even if you get bad comments about your photos, don‘t listen, if you love your photos and edits that‘s what counts, never turn down good criticism, never turn down people who give you tips, listen to them, maybe they will help you out one day, they sure helped me out when I started.
Most of all: have fun while spotting with your friends, those are the best moments of being a spotter.