Renowned French American photographer Vincent Laforet embarked on the photo mission of a lifetime when he soared 7,500 feet in a helicopter above New York City to capture breathtaking aerial photos of the glittering cityscape at night. Held in only by a full-body harness, leaning out of the chopper over a dizzying expanse of darkness and tiny pinpoints of light, the photographer says his experience was “both exhilarating and terrifying” and “the scariest. . . and the most beautiful” flight of his career.
Titled Gotham 7.5K, the photos were shot on assignment for Men’s Health Magazine for an article about psychology. Laforet proposed shooting from an unusually high altitude to capture the lines formed by the streets of NYC at night, which remind him of “brain synapses.” After finding a helicopter pilot willing to fly at such a crazy altitude, the photographer had to work with him to plan flight paths and obtain special clearances to fly above airline traffic landing at airports.
Luckily, the trip was pulled off without a hitch, resulting in a truly stunning collection of photos showcasing the city’s iconic skyline from above. To see more, be sure to check out Laforet’s post on his experience and this behind-the-scenes video by David Geffin.