December 1 – artsy F-15

Tuesday, December 1– Into AKM at 11:40, sunny and nice. Had to prep for one or two articles for the next Springfield Business Journal, went shopping for a new radio that will allow me to receive WILL FM in Urbana so I can listen to classical music at home. Want to find a laptop computer cheap too. Caught up with blog and correspondence . Processed pictures most of the day. Tried to phot an F-15 in the pattern, but he was not in the area long. Came in with nothing special so I got artsy and did some interesting reworking of two. A generally down day without accomplishing much. Started the December Lincoln Flyer but didn’t go far. I need to improve what I’m eating around here. The plastic boxes of cut cantaloupe, strawberries, melon and pineapple, which have been okay two or three times a week . . . they’re getting to be a drag. Went home at 8:40, a little bent . . . . but feeling particularly well-nourished. Day rating: D

The SOUND announcing the arrival of an F-15 at the airport shooting touch and goes can be heard anywhere I am at AeroKnow Museum. Trouble is with  15s, unlike C-32s and C-40s who also practice  in the SPI pattern,  is that sometimes pilots “shoot” only one landing and don’t return. Other times they fly up to seven circuits. If I hear just one LOUD Eagle “song” without another in say four minutes, I consider the opportunity to photograph it LO)ST. If I hear it a second time even five minutes later, I usually head out to the parking lot fence with my Canon and long lens, reasonably confident, the Eagle driver will return for a third or fourth pass, and I’ll catch some pictures. So it went Tuesday. I almost missed it. The Canon long lens had trouble in auto-focus because the fence confused it and it refused to focus at all, costing me at least three pictures.  I was on the parking lot about half an hour searching the sky and photographing.

Two of the three pictures I kept because I saw “possibilities” I later developed as “art” pictures. They are obvious here.  In one, the “X” on the image was the fence.  In the other, there was flare from aiming into the sun, and it’s the flare that appears as a disk on the left. I’m including the unedited picture of the more colorful snap to show what the raw product looked like before I “cooked” it with Corel. The process of working with these pictures took about an hour. I consider it time well spent.

About Job Conger

I am a freelance aviation, business and tourism writer, poet, songwriter. My journalism appears regularly in Springfield Business Journal and Illinois Times. I am author of Springfield Aviation from Arcadia Publishing and available everywhere. As founder/director of AeroKnow Museum (AKM) and a volunteer with American Aviation Historical Society (AAHS), I created this blog to share news about AKM activity and aviation history.
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