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John Thow

John “Slick” Thow

Publisher / Editor / Photo-Journalist

Growing up in Southern California, SlickPixels.com creator, and Flight Brief Magazine Editor, John began his journey in aviation photography at the age of 7 when he began going out with his grandfather to the Point Mugu Air Show. “My grandfather had the run of the place… and so did I in those days,” says John. Grandfather Jim was one of the head electricians at the base and was in charge of setting up much of the air show. “He would set me up in the pilot’s grandstand with them and their families. It was great to hear their stories after they returned from flying in the show. Some years  I even got to meet the Blue Angels.”

“I learned early on that it was a good idea to plan on being out at the show for both Saturday and Sunday, primarily due to the potential fluctuation in the weather. Oftentimes, especially with the potential for fog at Mugu, the Blue Angels, and other acts would only get to fly on one of the two show days. Besides, I got to run around all over the place taking pictures and eating all the show food I could stomach.”

“In those days, the jets in the show often flew loaded, and actually launched the occasional sidewinder missile. Looking back through those old snapshots makes me wish we had today’s cameras back then, but those old flight demos were amazing.”

“I guess I have just never really grown out of loving to hang out at the air show.”

Dan Thow

Dan “Shooter” Thow


Much like myself, my son Daniel seems to find a sense of peace and purpose among the hum of propellers and the roar of jet engines. Dan has been coming with me to air shows or walking the flightlines of local airfields since before he could walk.

Desiring to be like dad, we started him off with a fairly basic automatic digital camera when he was about 4 years old and noticed very quickly that he had a natural ability for capturing our favorite fast-moving subjects.

Since that time we have set him up with a professional-grade camera and better lenses and his results have really been impressive and continue to improve. He has always sparked a lot of enthusiasm and attention from the other photographers, show-goers, personnel, and pilots. They all got a kick out of seeing a young guy working hard to get just the right shot.

Dan has appeared in several newspapers in their Air Show articles and reviews appeared on the San Diego Fox 6 news working hard at MCAS Miramar and was later interviewed at North by Dave Scott on KUSI. Many of Dan’s photos have been published not only in our work but in a variety of other places including the front page of the September 2008 Air Show edition of the Flight Jacket newspaper at MCAS Miramar.

Dan was branded, “Shooter” by the Marines at Miramar, naming him after the Marines’ term for a combat photographer.

Luke Thow

Luke “Mongoose” Thow


Following in the footsteps of Dad and older brother Dan in what has now become a family tradition, Luke truly loves all things aviation. He has become a wealth of aviation knowledge and his photography and aviation art skills are not only amazing but are constantly improving.

Please be sure to have a look at some of Luke’s images in our air show galleries right here on Slickpixels.com and in a variety of our upcoming books expected to be released in late 2022.

Lionel Robinson

Lyonel “L-Train” Robinson


Lyonel first got serious about his photography while working in the photo department at an electronics store. Initially shooting landscapes, he soon took what he had learned and applied it to diagnostic imaging, better known as radiology or X-rays. Lyonel has been working as an X-ray technologist since 2003.

Lyonel began photographing airplanes with us in 2005. Unlike Dan and I, Ly really grew up with more of an interest in photography than in aviation. But after getting him out for a couple of shows, he really caught the bug and has been shooting with us ever since.

Lyonel really enjoys the challenge that aviation photography presents with its fast-moving, wide variety of subjects.

Now if he can just figure out how to fit an F-22 onto an X-ray table…

Photography, Aviation Illustration, and MORE...