Charlie Pyles-Owner

About Air Pix Aviation Photos

The name Air Pix was the result of a partnership between Charlie Pyles and Norb Donegan.  They both put some names in a hat and decided to stick with what got drawn. It was called Air Pix Aerial Photography in the beginning because after Norb taught Charlie to fly They decided they could make a little money starting with a 35mm Leica Camera. They did that for a while in 1972-73 when Norb decided to pursue his flying career. Charlie decided to continue with Air Pix doing aerial photography into the 21st century.

Charlie Pyles was an airplane nut since childhood and had amassed a large collection of 35mm Slides shot at airports around the country. Through the World Airline Hobby Club (now World Airline Historical Society), Charlie made friends with many other photographers from around the world and started trading slides with them. The collection grew right along with the Hobby Club that he had been instrumental in starting around 1975-76 with his friend Paul Collins. Paul was President and Charlie was Membership Coordinator.

Photo Business Cards
Charlie Pyles started his airline career with Lake Central Airlines in 1963 as a Station Agent. In those days the SA did everything from ticketing to loading and unloading the DC-3's at the time. Charlie had always preferred working in Operations because of his training at the National School of Aeronautics during high school (correspondence course) and Resident training after graduating from Elkins High School (WV) in 1962. Part of the Ops job was preparing flight plans and weather information for the flights. He learned how to calculate Weight and Balance for the airplanes transmitting the information to the next downline station through teletype messaging. Charlie also became friends with the flight crews and oftentimes would sell photos to them. One day, his friend Don Nippert walked in and asked if a photo business card could be made for him with the picture he provided. The answer was yes and the rest is history.

As the aerial photography business wained, the photo business cards became popular. Eventually the business cards became a fun business and that's where Air Pix Aviation Photos is to this day.