Thursday, 18 July 2013

Max Ryan: A View from the Air.

Gorilla Island.
©Max Ryan. Not to be used without permission.
I am really pleased to be able to share with you the amazing work of Max Ryan. I don't really have to say much more do I? What incredibly beautiful photographs. Trust me the book is even better. I fell in love with it when some friends gave me a copy the other week. I was entranced by the painterly construction and knew I had to share this jewel of a book with a larger audience. 

Castle Hurst Spit
©Max Ryan. Not to be used without permission.

Where did you get the idea for the book from?

Almost two years ago I was taking some photos of Westbury White Horse, it was about 5 in the morning, I was trying to climb up on the fence to gain some height for the shot! I was trying not to fall off the fence when in the distance I could see something moving towards was pretty scary, until I realised it was just a flock of sheep heading my way. I decided to give up on trying to sit on the fence, so sat and watched the sheep for a while, it was then that I decided to investigate getting some height, as the fence was just not doing it!

My mother paid for my first flight! I have a pretty serious fear of heights and generally hate flying! So it was either going to be a success or a complete waste of time. Strangely, after the initial weirdness of flying in a helicopter, I just loved it.

Although its fairly noisy up there, with the door off! it's so very peaceful, it is just an amazing experience to see life from up high. It's clean and stress free!

I always have a route mapped out before flying, generally these include obvious landmarks but while on route, if I spot something I get it!

©Max Ryan. Not to be used without permission.

How many flying hours were needed to get the photographs?
I have clocked up roughly eight and a half hours flying time. (For 'Bird's Eye View' flying in a Robinson 22 & 44)The book has taken me the best part of a year and a half to design and print.

Where can people buy the book?
The book is available so far for £13.00 in; Seed by Design & Hunting Raven Books, both in Frome. Good Buy Books & Oldfield Park Books, both in Bath. White HorseBookshop, Marlborough & Bailey Hill Bookshop, Castle Cary & EdingtonFarm Shop.

I imagine that there are many technical difficulties to overcome when photographing from the air?
Technical difficulties.......not really, it's tiring and sometimes cold!

What's in the pipeline?
My next plan, apart from spending more time getting 'Bird's Eye View' out there, is to perhaps go for Dorset, Devon & Cornwall. (Not yet tho!)

If you were a book what book would you be and why?
Not sure what book I would be....The Giant Wasp Sandwich, think because I am not keen on Wasps.....I am sure you were looking for a deeper response!

I had no expectations. Thanks Max.


  1. Great interview!

    The photographs are stunning. Flying in a helicopter sounds like fun--I've always wanted to know what it's like to be high up in an open craft.

    1. The book is amazing-I haven't got a head for heights-so would wait for you on the ground!

  2. It's really beautiful and surreal. I'm too afraid of heights to be able to do that.

    1. Surreal is a good word-the view point changed by the height. Like you Msmariah, I'd be on the ground.