Welcome to the future of aviation photography…

The Centre of Aviation Photography (COAP) is a professionally run organisation that brings you a year-round programme of events to take your aviation photography to new heights. Award-winning, world-renowned photographer and journalist Rich Cooper created COAP in 2015, and it has modified Articles that incorporate a commitment to distributing funds from Assignments to associated charitable causes.

COAP offers Workshops to bring your photography and editing skills to another level as well as Assignments to professionally engage with military aviation, to experience the frontline and produce stunning end results. Photo Shoots offer themed recreations in conjunction with TimeLine Events Ltd and these allow you to hone your skills and capture unique results. Coming in the future will be Seminars to connect and discuss cutting edge topics with the best in the business.

“This is not just about getting access all areas (though that is a big part), but also about the learning of different levels of photography and post-processing, the development of your hobby into tangible end products, sharing experience, working alongside pros all over the world, meeting and discussing relevant topics with the people that are best in the business, the social side and the belonging to something that is year-round.”

Rich Cooper, COAP

Rich Cooper

Rich is a worldwide professional photographer and journalist, and has been behind a camera for around 30 years. He has been commissioned for shoots all over the globe, with a 10-year career in publishing, editorial, design and journalism. Commercially, he provides stunning bespoke coverage of anything from a war zone or commercial product delivery to a family photo shoot or portfolio, he specialises in 'available light' and 'reportage' photography, is a coveted commercial and wedding photographer and is known throughout the world for his aviation images.

He is a Special Correspondent for Combat Aircraft magazine and undertakes UK and European submissions for J-Wings, Pacific Wings and AERO Magazine, and has been a member of the Royal International Air Tattoo Photographic Team for nearly 20 years. Amongst the awards Rich has won for his work, he was the 2012 Finalist in the Professional Photographer of The Year, and went on to win the coveted title of “Action & Extreme Professional Photographer of The Year” in 2014.

“Having started on a challenging mix of Olympus Trip compacts and steam-driven Praktica SLRs from the age of 7 in the early 1980s, I then moved to Minolta and stayed faithful throughout its magical Dynax range. Once the call of digital came in 2005, I stayed with the new Konica Minolta company and followed its merger into Sony, before switching to an all-Nikon line-up in 2011."

“Whilst working for a decade as Editor of Combat Aircraft magazine (largest military aviation magazine in the world) and Deputy Editor of Aircraft Illustrated (one of Europe’s longest-standing magazines), I established the Aviation Photo Club (APC). This organisation ran for five years and took groups of photographers all over the world on over 20x trips to 11 countries during the mid-2000s. Forming COAP in 2015 was a natural progression. Aviation photography is growing fast, yet opportunities and engagement is getting harder or non-existent – especially when compared to other genres. There is a need to harness the digital age amongst the aviation community, to develop workflow and technique, share insight and knowledge and, ultimately produce stunning end results. I hope COAP enables you and inspires you to take your photography to new heights!”


All of COAP’s logistics, travel, accommodation, transport and bookings are fulfilled by the travel professionals at Ian Allan Aviation Tours Ltd (IAAT).

IAAT is a division of Ian Allan Travel, a private family-owned business and one of the largest independent travel management companies in the UK. Now in its 51st year of operation, the company is headquartered at offices in Shepperton, Surrey, within close proximity of both Heathrow and Gatwick Airports. IATA and ABTA bonded and holders of an ATOL licence issued by the CAA, Ian Allan Aviation Tours operates approximately 25 of its own tours each year specifically designed for aviation enthusiasts, as well as handling the logistics and booking for all COAP events. www.ianallantravel.com/aviationtours/


• Learn new skills & tricks of the trade.
• Share insight & knowledge.
• Experience the operational frontline.
• Participate in world-wide Assignments.
• Develop technique, workflow & post-production.
• Produce outstanding end results.
• Raise money for charity.

  • Holding a camera doesn't make a person a photographer, same as holding a driving licence doesn't make someone a driver… COAP may possibly be (for me) a game changer.

    Adrian, Mildenhall.

  • I came out of that workshop buzzing. A very enjoyable, relaxed and well planned event attended by a varied selection of aviation photography enthusiasts that bodes well for the future of COAP.

    Adrian, Workshop.

  • I enjoyed the course, I learned from it, and it has made me want more - both in terms of my photography and the mechanics of it. The brief showing of LR opened my eyes, and I know that I need to raise my game, to learn a lot more about my whole approach, and I see COAP as being the vehicle for that improvement.

    Adrian, Workshop.

  • It was extremely informative and taught me a lot about taking aviation pictures even though I have been doing it for 30 years. I can’t wait to try things out.

    Andy, Whetstone.

  • In a word: Superb. Nothing but praise from start to finish.

    Ian, Assignment.

  • The talk on the Monday and the met/base/operations brief on Tuesday morning were sensational and reinforced the tremendous sense of privilege that I felt being on the trip.

    Ian, Assignment.

  • It really was an excellent visit right from the start… and as I look through my images (again!) I have to pinch myself to bring home the fact that I really was there and I was that close

    Ian, Oxted.

  • Exceptional, unrestricted access to life on a front-line squadron that is normally denied to members of the public.

    Leigh, Colchester.

  • Two events down and certainly from my point of view, two successes. My main reason for booking these events is to improve my photography and to learn from more experienced hands and I feel that I am coming away from events moving forwards each time

    Neil, Buckingham.

Hours of photographic operations
available through COAP this year!
Hours of expert training
available through COAP this year!
Hours of expert insider knowledge
available through COAP this year!