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We recently featured airscape magazine in our blog post titled, “The Top 18 Aerospace and Aviation Industry Blogs and Publications You Need to Be Reading.” And David Foxx from airscape was nice enough to feature us on his site along with agreeing to do a Q&A with us. Keep reading to learn more about him and his publication!
- What first got you interested in planes and aviation?
I’m one of those typical avgeeks who honestly can’t remember. I vaguely recall my father taking me to a model flying club, where he used to race control line planes. But my earliest clear memory is living under the approach path to Auckland International Airport (New Zealand) and sitting in a tree watching 747-100s, -SPs, 707s and DC-8s float across the sky. They were so beautiful and elegant and improbable all at once. I realized that if aviation could suspend several thousand tons of airplane in thin air, it could do anything – and I wanted to touch the magic.
- Do you have anyone in the industry or your life who has influenced you?
Like everyone, I guess I was lucky to have a couple of just outstanding instructors while I was a student. I never flew P2 with anyone who wasn’t totally in love with flying, but my favorites were the old guys who never put up with any nonsense, never settled for less than perfect, and had a lifetime of experience to share. People like that turn you from a pilot into an aviator.
I’m also a big believer in having heroes. The lessons and examples of earlier generations are a powerful motivation. I guess that’s one reason airscape has such a strong history focus. For me, Clarence “Bud” Anderson is a particular inspiration to stand straight, walk tall, and fly accurate.
- What is your favorite thing about the aerospace industry in general?
I’ll bet the farm you only get one answer to this question – the people. You couldn’t hope to find a more amazing, global, generous and friendly community. airscape’s mission is to try and be a crossroads for all the different camps within that community – and what a privilege it is.
Of course, the people. So, want to know my second favorite thing? Art. Aviation is a rare blend of magic and science, of beauty and Newton. I adore that alchemy. I think it’s the real reason people fall so head-over-heels for aviation, and why so many professional pilots just want to fly more in their time off. You only ever see that in the arts.
- What are you most looking forward to regarding the future of the aviation industry?
Maybe I’ve just started paying more attention with airscape, but there’s so much exciting stuff happening right now.
Aviation seemed to be stuck in a rut for decades while composites, performance enhancements, and computer-based avionics were all advancing in the experimental sector. Now, certified aviation seems to have got its game back. I think it’s important to acknowledge that the industry can never repay the debt it owes the EAA and that whole homebuilding world.
There’s so much happening right now, but the area that really has me excited is electric flight. As it becomes practical it has the power to totally reinvigorate GA – and a healthy GA sector is vital to a healthy aviation industry. There’s no getting around that fundamental truth.
- If you could own any type of plane – no budget in mind – what kind would it be and why?
Oh, that’s easy – and impossible. Definitely a single-seat fighter. My first (of many) would likely be a P-51. I wouldn’t even need to fly it. I’d just look at it all day long. The Mustang stands for so much beyond the victory it’s famous for – the foresight of the people who ordered it, the genius of its design and production, the dedication of the people who built it, and the panache of the people who flew it. Don’t get me wrong though, I’d fly it if I safely could.
- Do you recommend any other aviation blogs and publications we should follow?
There may be a lot of crap on the internet, but there’s also a wealth of amazing flying, writing, and photographing talent too. If I ever get big headed about my writing, a quick tour of the aviation blogosphere soon puts me back in my place.
But the site I’d recommend most strongly is NASA’s Aeronautics portal. We may need the benefit of hindsight to see it clearly, but I’m sure NASA is in a second golden age, possibly even more valuable than the one it enjoyed in the 1930s. Everything really important to the future of flight is going through NASA right now – including commercial supersonics, aero-elastics, green aviation, noise reduction, future airliners, returnable spacecraft, and more.
There are countless companies and start-ups pushing aviation forward, but one way or another, there’s NASA DNA in their projects.
Read More from Cutting Dynamics
Our blog is filled with other great blog posts and Q&A’s to peruse. Check out some of our most recent articles:
- The Top 18 Aerospace and Aviation Industry Blogs and Publications You Need to Be Reading
- Engineering Team Q&A
- The 5 Steps of Cutting Dynamics’ Engineering Process
- Custom Aerospace Components from Cutting Dynamics
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