Our Texas from a Different Perspective

Terry Diggs was a man of medium height, slight build but possessed the bluest eyes of anyone I have ever seen. Very poised and dignified in his presence, I took a liking to the older man immediately upon our having met. A gentleman to the core but also one that took no flack from anyone, I learned shortly after our meeting that he was a veteran of WWII and a B-17 pilot whose service for our country was cut short after being shot down over Germany and suffered three years in a POW camp therein. Needless to say I felt honored to have Terry as my instructor and drilled him often on the time he spent under the unwanted supervision of Adolph Hitler.

Doing a preflight before heading up for photos.

 

I respected Terry and loved the fact that he treated me possibly like he was treated during his own flight training. Abrupt and quick to point out my short comings in handling the little Cessna, I felt compelled to do my best for Terry and within about four months of training had attained my credentials as a private pilot.

 

It was not long before I began carrying my camera aloft to photograph the design of the land that slid beneath my wings on so many early morning flights and began collecting a good file of images describing our Texas from on high.

Brazos under an autumn cloak.

 

Within a couple of years I was honored with the opportunity to check out in a 1946 Aeronca Champ, a little tail wheel plane that offered even better options for aerial shots as I could remove the door and shoot past the wing strut with little difficulty. For years I shot from this little plane and loved every minute of being aloft in the cool hours of early morning when the atmosphere was so fresh and clean, offering a view of the land below in colors so rich and vivid.

 

 

Along with my own flights came many hours aloft with my good friend Knut Mjolhus, a college buddy from our years at Texas Tech and a pilot of unparalleled skills. From a Cessna Caravan, Cessna 206, Hughes 500 helicopter, Bell Jet Ranger and Robinson R 22 and 44, we flew to so many wonderful locations around the state in order that I might document the beauty of our state from this perspective so high.

Canadian river in the last rays of an autumn evening

 

Today, thanks to my friend Bob Moorhouse, I am still able to enjoy shooting from above while flying Bob’s little 1946 Aerona Chief, the near twin brother of my first tail wheel plane in the Champ. I would like to take a moment and share with you a few of these images that define our state from a perspective seen and appreciated by too few. Put on your googles and imagine the groan of an engine as it strains to gain the altitude that will support a photographic essay of our Texas from the sky!

Badlands in exquisite light

 

Rio Grande down river from Presidio.

 

Red fingers in the Knoco badlands, Knox County.

 

Confluence of the Pecos river (from the right) and the Rio Grande.

 

Old Torres ruins (circa 1874) overlooking the Canadian.

 

The Pecos river stretches into the horizon just above the Rio Grande.
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15 Responses to Our Texas from a Different Perspective

  1. Huard Eubanks says:

    Thanks for the beautiful pics. I was an aerial gunner/radioman during that war. I had never been in an airplane before then. I can still remember my first flight. A lot of years ago.

  2. Sallye Oldham says:

    I have seen many of your pictures, on magazine covers and in the articles. I wondered how much patience it took to shoot them. They are beautiful, and I really appreciate your gifts to so many, who may never see these in person.
    Thank you.

  3. anse windham says:

    More of Meinzer’s great photos. First I’ve seen from the air. It’s a tough job with the slow film, vibrating airplane, and low light levels. I’m jealous!

  4. bailey foster says:

    wonderful photos…nature paints the best of all pictures!

  5. Holland Wallace says:

    Such terrific shots, of parts of the state I’ve never visited. THanks.

  6. Joseph C. Herrera says:

    Thank You so much for your passion! Keep it going so many more can see what a great state this is!

  7. jOHN jABLONSKI says:

    Very nice professionaly done pictures,

  8. Linda Stockton says:

    Just found your site. What a thrill! Exquisite, amazing pictures. Words can’t describe the beauty your pictures capture. Pretty humbling, both the landscapes and your talent. Thanks.

  9. JULIA A KNAAKE says:

    Simply Amazing
    I will move to Texas just to take pictures and write stories

  10. Sandie says:

    Dear Wyman – thank you for your exquisite photography! You see Texas the way God must see it. I’m enraptured with its beauty and so grateful that I can call this amazing place – home.

  11. Alice Cordova says:

    Dear Wyman Meinzer.
    Thank you for sharing your wonderful photography with the world. You have superbly captured nature with your photo’s. I appreciate the efforts you endured to capture such marvelous work.

  12. reba watson says:

    Mr. Meinzer,
    I am taking art lessons from Mike Lanier in Abilene, Texas and would like very much to paint one
    of your photographs if I may have your permission. I think your work is awesome and as being a
    photographer for 15 years, I appreciate your wonderful tallent.

  13. LOYD BRANSON says:

    MY WEBSITE IS STILL IN THE MAKINGS. BUT I WANT TO THANK YOU FOR TAKING ME BACK TO THE DAY’S WHEN I WAS A MANAGER ON LOS MUERTOS RANCH IN SOUTH TEXAS.THE RANCH LIFE WITH ALL THE WILDLIFE MAKES YOU CLOSE TO NATURE.WHAT I CALL THE GOOD LIFE,I’M SURE YOU KNOW WHAT I’M REFERRING TO. THX AGAIN LOYD

  14. Jeanne Lobsinger says:

    Your photographs of my big, beautiful Texas are amazing. (I’m a little bit proud of the Country of Texas!!) I love these aerial shots. Thank you for sharing!

  15. I believe this internet site has got some very superb info for everyone. “Je veux que les paysans mettent la poule au pot tous les dimanches.” by King Henry IV of France.

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