Home WORLD Flying High With the First Family of Skytypers

Flying High With the First Family of Skytypers

Ever considered writing a message in the clouds? Greg and Stephen Stinis are the guys to call. The father-son team run the Chico, California-based company SkyTypers, where they pilot airplanes to “write” messages and advertisements in the sky using specialized smoke.

image/text credit: Great Big Story 

Greg’s father Andy first pioneered the business of sky-typing in 1931, by piloting a single airplane to form messages in the sky. Today, Greg and Stephen carry on the family legacy with a modernized process, using a team of five planes flying simultaneously to create masterpieces that can span over 15 miles in length.

The family now finds itself staring down another moment of change, this one ushered by new technologies that promise to reshape the next generation of skytyping—potentially at the cost of the art of single-plane skywriting. That will be a weighty decision for the youngest Stinis.


Most of the jobs they do are with the skytyping method, and most of those are commissioned by businesses looking for ostentatious advertising high above World Series baseball games, sprawling music festivals and NASCAR races.