Tag Archives: Michael Layefsky

An unusual New Year’s greeting from the Hall of Science

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It’s no secret that Michael Layefsky takes terrific aerial photos of the Berkeley landscape. In 2012, he had two shows in Berkeley – one at the Main Library and one at the Picturish Gallery. Berkeleyside also published a large portfolio of his work shot with a camera flying 150 feet in the air.

Layefsky and the staff at the Lawrence Hall of Science teamed up to make this valentine of a video to usher in the … Continue reading »

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Library shows local aerial photographer Michael Layefsky

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A solo exhibition of the work of Berkeley-based photographer Michael Layefsky recently opened at the main branch of the Berkeley Public Library.

Layefsky, who was profiled by Berkeleyside in January, captures his stunning images from the sky with the help of kites, helium balloons, and long poles.

Whether it’s the roof of Berkeley’s Forge and Tool complex, or the striking architecture of the Berkeley Art Museum as seen from above, the rice terraces of Bali or San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral, Layefsky’s images are never less than enthralling.

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For a stunning bird’s eye view, launch a kite (or a balloon)

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Michael Layefsky’s passion for aerial photography was born one day in 1997 when he was taking one of his customary walks on the UC Berkeley campus and he came across “this guy flying a humongous kite on the big lawn in front of the library”.

The “guy” turned out to be Cal architecture professor Cris Benton, an early adopter of kite aerial photography, whose stunning work can be viewed on his website and Flickr pool.

“Cris is both very talented and an educator. The internet was in its infancy when he started but he set out to document and provide information on KAP, as its known,” says Layefsky, who quickly became an eager student.

An early attempt by Layefsky to capture images from a camera rigged onto a kite took place in Berkeley’s Cesar Chavez Park. “It was really windy and way too hard to navigate the kite,” he recalls. “My wife nearly had her arm pulled out trying to help me.” … Continue reading »

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