WKU alum Jonathan Woods on his Time magazine cover photo from atop the Freedom Tower
A recent assignment for WKU alumnus Jonathan Woods took him to the very top of the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere. Woods is a Senior Editor for Photo and Interactive for Time Magazine. He graduated from Western Kentucky’s award-winning photojournalism department in 2007.
Woods says his interest in photographing the new One World Trade Center building began when he was working for NBC News’ website during the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11th attacks in 2011. Then, he ventured on an eight-month process of negotiating with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to allow access to the 405-foot spire on top of the 1,776 foot tall building known as the Freedom Tower.
He and a staff member from the GigaPan company climbed the ladder to take a series of photos that eventually make up a sweeping panoramic look at the Manhattan skyline.
“We were putting a camera in a place that we couldn’t go scout. It was on top of a 405-foot tall spire, which had a 405-foot tall ladder that we were not allowed to climb until the day we went up there,” said Woods. “So we had to work off of blueprints to create something to put a camera in a place that didn’t exist.”