Skyfaring by Mark Vanhoehacker

 

I first heard of Mr. Vanhoenacker when The New York Times published an excerpt of his book Skyfaring (and, by giving it the "Snowfall" treatment, I bet you may have seen it, or had it forwarded to you, too). I thought at first that this was another somewhat autobiographical aircraft book, probably a very technical look into flying and aircraft systems. This book does contain technical terms specific to aviation, but, surprisingly, it's really more of a tribute to the majesty and mystery of flying. Like most pilots, his life always pointed to flying, but he took a route involving working in the world of finance before he got there. Now? He occupies the right seat of a 747-400, and his book is filled with well-written philosophical observations about flying, and how it affects him and passengers in general. I'm not sure I'm qualified to say what writing is good and what is bad, but I will say, after reading his book, he has put into words what I'm thinking but can't articulate: On the surface, flying is about getting from point A to point B, but it's so much more than that. See the recent review from The Times for a much fuller description of this engaging and fascinating book.

 

Subway moments...

 
 

Because I, like millions of other New Yorkers, spend quite a bit of time in the bowels of Manhattan, I start to look at the subway in a whole new light: What do these switches do, what do the lights mean, and where does this conduit go to? Some items that look important to the running of the subway look as if they haven't been touched by human hands in decades. It is with these questions in mind, and looking at these things in a new light, that I began working on my subway series of prints. Photographing certain objects pertaining to the infrastructure of the MTA and then recreating them in a pristine 3-d environment. I will be coming out with a series of five, two of which are done and can be seen below.

7th Ave. in Brooklyn

7th Ave. in Brooklyn

47/50th, Rockefeller Center

47/50th, Rockefeller Center