LAX All Day Long: Airport Photo Goes Big | NBC Southern California

LAX All Day Long: Airport Photo Goes Big

"Wake Turbulence" photographer Michael Kelly finds a fresh perspective on our busy plane port.

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    Michael Kelley
    LA photographer Michael Kelley's "Los Angeles International" shows LAX over the course of Wednesday, Jan. 14, 2015.

    Any flier has had an endless, never-ending day, the sort of day that feels as though an airport is to be one's new home a la "The Terminal," the 2004 film that had Tom Hanks setting up semi-permanent shop at JFK.

    But a full day at any airport isn't just perusing the magazines at the newsstand yet again; it is a bustling, humming, beautiful process of airborne vessels taking off and landing, a marvel of timing, engineering, and art.

    Los Angeles photographer Michael Kelley is plugged into the wing-majestic wonder that is an airport, specifically our own Los Angeles International Airport. The hectic hub was the subject for the photographer's viral photo back in the spring of 2014 -- "Wake Turbulence" was the name and it showed many planes in mid-take-off -- and it has become the focus for his latest snapshot "Los Angeles International." (LAX has used the name "From Daylight to Darkness" for the photo.)

    About 400 photos were used in the final photograph. Mr. Kelley perched atop an old aircraft control tower for the length of Wednesday, Jan. 14, snapping away.

    To the left of the photograph? Morning's soft, diffuse, nearly colorless sky. To the right? The rich oranges and blues of sunset and mountains for contrast. And in the middle? The airport itself. The Theme Building has a cameo, and our welcome-to-California palm trees, and the parking structure, too.

    It just wouldn't seem like LAX without cars and more cars.

    As for what's next for the ever-patient, wait-for-the-right-shot Mr. Kelley? He plans to spend his summer visiting other airports, some 20 in all, to take more vibrant planes-plus-sky snapshots. You can find more of his work at Michael Kelley Photography.