Timothy McGurr is the son of legendary graffiti artist Futura 2000. He’s also the brains behind one of the most unique and stylish Instagram profiles on the Internets in @13thWitness. But, at least in these circles, he’s probably known more for one thing in particular than anything else: Launching the helicopter sneaker selfie.
On March 13, 2014, @13thWitness got into a helicopter and flew over the city of New York. While hanging well above the nearest skyscraper, the photographer snapped an image of his “Toro Bravo” Air Jordan IVs hanging off the ledge, captioning the image with “taking JUMPMAN to a whole new level.” It freaked people out, made them take notice, and made them say, “Oh s#$%” in both the best and worst way possible.
Since then, the picture has garnered over 32.5K likes, as well as legions of copycats and jealous Instagram fiends. It represented the pinnacle of Instagram sneaker culture. Nowhere on the Internets is this community stronger than it is on the ‘gram, where collectors battle almost every day to see who can stunt the most. The nicest kicks. The best graphics. The illest images. Knowing that, you had to figure we’d eventually come to this place, where people are literally hanging out of helicopters in an attempt to capture that one shot to put you on the map. Is it dangerous? Maybe. I’ve never tried it before. Are the results dope? Um…yes. These helicopter sneaker selfies are like Instagram’s Holy Grail. You can’t top them, and no matter what people do from here on out, you have to know @13thWitness put the game on notice.
As we head into 2015, how will you stick out? How will you change the game? For sneakerheads everywhere, all of that starts on Instagram, which is setting and breaking trends on an almost daily basis.
“Instagram has offered kids a different outlet,” sneaker collector @deadstocknyc told me via email recently. “I’m 35 and my generation had to wear the shoes to show them off…now that is not the case.
“There are a lot of people that have some very creative staging for the shoes (and some totally s***** ones) but it’s nice to see people putting effort into showcasing the shoes.”
It’s one thing to line your shoes up in your living room, against a white backdrop, and snap a photo that gets hundreds of likes on Instagram. It’s something else entirely when you fly above a city and snap a shot that completely changes the game.
This is Instagram’s Holy Grail: The Best Helicopter Sneaker Shots of the Past Year.
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