Space Shuttle Atlantis leaves from pad 39D, Cape Canaveral. This was shot from the roof of the VAB (Vehicle Assembly Building) one of the largest structures ever built, a couple of miles from the Shuttle Launch pad. I had prefocused on what I HOPED would be the track of the Shuttle, and fired at what I hoped would be a moment that gives some idea of what it felt like to watch it fly. In the end, for me, the trail of fire and smoke which it left behind was really the story, which gives a sense of the power involved just to get off the ground. We know what the ship looks like, but the traces it leaves behind are even more telling.
David has been covering the news for over four decades — American Photo Magazine named him one of the “100 Most Important People in Photography” and in 2010 they did a 10 page story on his work. By the end of it’s final mission, Atlantis had orbited a total of 4,848 times, traveling nearly 126,000,000 miles, or more than525 times the distance from Earth to the Moon.
This is Atlantis.
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