Being in an airport isn’t exactly a zen experience—from inside they’re chaotic, noisy and unpredictable. But from above, they are a feng shui vision of harmonious design.
Designer Lauren O’Neill collects satellite images from Google Earth and puts them on her Tumblr Holding Pattern. She explains, “During layovers, I often find myself observing the activity on the runway and thinking that I’d love to see this from above. With a creative block on a project, I took to Google Mapping airports and was enamored by the beautiful satellite shots on my screen.” Her collection is a testament to the meticulous order and logic of industrial architecture.
The thoughtfully cropped images show various airports worldwide from a pilot’s-eye view. Even outdated airports in ho-hum cities look like art from above. From that high, runways turn into graceful lines, terminal connections reveal minimalistic composition, expansive stretches of concrete create a compelling contrast against grass or water, and the runway markings become strong geometric patterns.
Check out our favorite images from Holding Pattern in the gallery above.
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Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Washington, D.C.
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London Heathrow Airport
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Austin-Bergstrom International Airport
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Charles de Gaulle Airport, Paris
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Newark Liberty International Airport
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Raivavae Airport, French Polynesia
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Logan International Airport, Boston