Jamie Kripke’s personal project Air Show started with a little research into the origins of flight via the Wright Brothers. “Being from Ohio, a lover of bicycles, and someone with a healthy fear of flying, I was naturally drawn to the story of the Wright Brothers,” he wrote of the project. “It seemed like a logical place to start.”
He learned that Wilbur preferred long country rides and Orville the track, that their first airplane could only fly straight, and that much of the design and many of the parts for their airplanes belonged to their bicycles.
“After researching the Wright Brothers’ story, I had to go to Dayton,” Jamie said. The Dayton Air Show, held annually in late June, is one of the country’s foremost airshows featuring world-class aerobatic performances, cutting-edge military jet displays and demonstrations, and a fleet of pristine World War II-era aircraft.
“On the media day before the show, they offered me a ride in a fighter jet, which I promptly turned down. Matthew Turley thinks I’m crazy. Then again, he’s a licensed pilot. So I think that he is crazy,” he joked.
Tens of thousands of spectators attend the event, along with hundreds of professional and amateur aviation photographers.
“I think there is an overabundance of ‘real’ and ‘authentic’ imagery out in the world right now. It used to be interesting to me, but not anymore. So I knew that creatively I wanted to go in the other direction—to make something ‘surreal’ instead of real,” Jamie said of his Air Show images.
While he was in Dayton, Jamie also visited Carillon Historical Park, home to an original 1905 Wright Flyer, and the Wright Cycle Company building on Williams Street, now a historic landmark. Keep an eye out for his next project, which will feature images made at the National Museum of the United States Air Force at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, just outside of Dayton.
“I honestly think this is sort of a next step in the evolution of my work, and one that is totally unique to me. I’m going to follow it, and see where it goes,” Jamie said.