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on Apr 29, 2014 in Aviation

Planes on Stick #2


I actually took a whole bunch of clicks of the Planes on a Stick at the Grand Junction airport months back. The simple reason is because of the skies and the light. If they weren’t as you see them, I simply would have passed up the aircraft. What’s so special about the skies and the light? When it comes to aircraft, on a stick or otherwise, clouds make all the difference in the world. When we look up at a flying aircraft, we all see them up against clouds (if there are clouds in the sky). With the clouds, there is the start of magic of the stationary aircraft taking flight in our imaginations. The other great benefit of clouds is the diffused light. The combo had me out and shooting.


When it comes to making the actual clicks, I have my own thoughts process there as well. Keeping it fun and light, I shot with the Df / 18-35AFS. With that, I then got myself in a position where in my imagination, I would like to be in an air to air but might be a bit dangerous which means being close and wide. And with the Blue Angel, be on the deck of that flattop where there is no way in hell a sane person would be during a catch! I wanted that attitude to come out in the photo. At the same time, I’m looking at the background to maximize the clouds while minimizing the stick. And that’s the thought process behind the camera clicks.


Now about the computer clicks. As you can see from above, there was a bit to remove. First was the main work roughed out in ACR. Then in PS, Content Aware Fill did most of the heavy lifting. I start by selecting the aircraft with the Magic Wand and do a Sharpening for Content High Pass on it. With that mask made, Cmd-Click on that mask selects it. Cmd-Shft-I to inverse the selection and with the Clone tool, make a small path to remove the stick from the plane right next to the plane. Then with Lasso, select the stick and Content Aware Fill makes it all disappear. Both of these photos I knocked out in less than 30min. And with that, it’s back to work I’ve gotta go.