About this project
L.A. AIRSPACE is a photography book featuring images of Los Angeles taken from a helicopter. The images were taken over the course of two years, and span the greater L.A. area — from Hollywood to Pasadena, Malibu and Santa Monica to Long Beach, Griffith Park to Will Rodgers State Park and beyond.
All of the images were shot during a time period known as the ‘golden hour,’ in which the California sunset cascades over the city, giving amazing depth, texture, and three-dimensionality not seen at any other time during the day. Every one of the 35+ helicopter flights was timed around the golden hour to give the images as much rich detail as possible.
The finished book will be a hardcover, image-wrap with linen spine, 9”x12”, black and white, 120 pages in length, and printed right here in Los Angeles using traditional bookmaking methods to produce each book by hand in the highest quality possible.
18” and 36” museum quality prints are also available as a pledge reward. The prints are made in West Hollywood by the supplier for LACMA, MoMA, MOCA -- the quality and of these prints is truly amazing. They will make a stunning edition to a home or office. All prints are sold unframed.
For the 18" prints, you can choose from a curated selection of 5 images. You can see the choices below. All prints will ship in a sturdy mailing tube.
18" Print Options:
One of the hardest things about this project is leaving some of the final images on the cutting room floor. This reward comes with six custom designed 5"x7" stationery cards that can be used as a greeting cards, thank you notes, or decorations. This reward includes images that didn't make it into the book but we still loved -- both in black and white and in color.
For the $1,000 and $2,000 pledge levels, spend a day with Mike in Los Angeles, enjoy a great meal at a restaurant of your choice, and talk about anything related to building a career in photography, photographic technique, personal projects, marketing, or any other topic under the sun. Also included are the book, a 36” print, a set of cards, phone backgrounds, and your name printed in the book.
The $2,000 pledge level also includes a helicopter ride over Los angeles with Mike where you will spend an afternoon together setting up a flight plan and depending on your preference, flying around downtown skyscrapers, the Southern California coast, or hovering over departing jets at LAX. A great opportunity to learn about aerial photography and create some amazing images of your own, or to just sit back and enjoy the view.
Mike Kelley is an architectural and interiors photographer based in Los Angeles. After taking one too many falls while trying to make a career out of professional snowboarding, he decided to head to L.A. to pursue a career in the arts. He is also one of those weird people who goes to the airport to watch planes just because, and his life-long obsession with aviation has led to more than one project with aviation as a central theme point.
In addition to photographing Los Angeles from above, other projects of Mike's include an investigation of the architectural history of Iceland, a complete re-creation of a Pan Am 747 jumbo jet advertising series, and a project titled 'Wake Turbulence' where he composited the departing flights from Los Angeles International Airport into one image. Mike is a frequent contributor to art and photography blogs, as well as a photographic educator who offers workshops for aspiring photographers.
Read the campaign diary (Part 1) here
Read the campaign diary (Part 2) here
Read the campaign diary (Part 3) here
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Thank you for visiting the LA AIRSPACE Kickstarter Campaign Page!
Risks and challenges
Many of the biggest hurdles involved with creating this book are already behind us. I'm finished with the helicopter flights, the photographs have all been taken and edited, the most of the design and layout of the book is in place. The fact that these are complete mitigates and eliminates much of the risk in producing this project.
The biggest remaining challenge will be actually meeting our goals to get the book printed. Since the decision was made to publish this book here in Los Angeles and not to outsource anything overseas, the prices are significantly higher, though those prices will end up supporting local artists and businesses. Raising enough money to make the printing possible is the hardest part.
Another possible challenge will be overcoming potential production delays. By working a little extra time into the delivery schedule, I'll be doing my best to make sure that everything will be done right without rushing or cutting corners, and that anything that comes up can be dealt with before the shipping dates arrive.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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