When reporter Holger Liebs manages to find “a snapshot aesthetic” in Wolfgang Tillmans’ latest work (Truth Study Center), the photographer snaps and says that not just anybody can shoot such pictures through scratched plane windows: “In the plane, I have to sit on the non-sunny side. I have to darken the area from where I am photographing, otherwise there will be a reflection on the glass. Then I use a very wide aperture with no depth of field so that the window is not in focus. I must not sit where I’ll be taking pictures into the jet stream, otherwise I get heat striae. When checking in, I name the precise seat number: third row from the back, seat A, for example.” (found here)
Needless to say, this doesn’t really refute the simple fact that the photos do have a snapshot aesthetic. Also, only somebody who can ask for a special seat on the plane and who has basic knowledge of photography can do these photos, and that’s very clearly not just anybody.