Saturday 19 January 2013

Planes and Trains

Well, the New Year is well and truly upon us.  Not much in the way of updates lately, largely due to being a self-employed photographer and having to fill out the HMRC Self Assessment.  Because Tax Needn't Be Taxing.  Just somewhat irritating and time consuming. 

Anyway, before that mess settled on us, Amy and myself had a days photography of trains and planes over the Christmas break, during a visit to see my family in the Midlands.  So, for the sake of something to post whilst we gear back up for doing actual photography work this year (as opposed to accounting and admin), here are some pics from those shoots...

On a particularly wet and miserable day, we dropped by Bewdley Station in the Severn Valley, mainly because I was horribly aware I hadn't done any train photography in a bit, and therefore wanted to get back into it.
The pictures would probably have been better, had I had a better camera.  I know the saying about how a bad workman always blames his tools, but given the manky weather we really didn't want to have the Nikons out with us, leaving just the Canon 350.  Though it has been a reliable and decent camera in the past, its showing its age a bit now, and frankly hasn't been the same since I slithered into that stream with it during the Teddybears Picnic shoot last September...

Earlier the same day, we'd been to the RAF Museum at Cosford, which is a place I frankly love, and which I've been going to since I was about 8.  The museum is a pretty fantastic place now, with a load of new buildings and lots on display (the RAF busy cutting budgets and scrapping planes at a rate that the museum can barely keep up with).

Something which fascinates me about the new "Cold War" hangar is the planes suspended from the ceiling, a full-size version of the childhood thing of hanging airfix kits from the ceiling of your bedroom.  Only with several tons worth of metal.  Very impressive, and only slightly unsettling to stand beneath.

My go at something Amy does a lot of, spot-colouring, with a nice jumble of RAF fighter and transport planes.

What we were both very happy to see whilst we were at Cosford though was this beastie.  At first glance, it just seemed to be a normal Spitfire, but on second glance we twigged this was the famous full-size Airfix plastic Spitfire built by James May for his Toy Stories program a couple of years ago.  We'd actually come in search of this exhibit a while back, but found it had been moved somewhere down south the day before we arrived.  We were not expecting to see it on our visit, and it was a very pleasant surprise indeed.

The only-slightly-creepy plastic James May.  Shame about the posture-forming chair though.

So into 2013, and the Plastic Spitfire inspires our first proper bit of Making Stuff of the year, and a project with our Scout Group (Amy is a leader, I'm a helper).  Amy did a rough design of a plane to be made out of card, for them to build as a glider.  I then refined the design to make it a bit more Spitfire in appearance. 

They were done with 3mil Mountboard, quite large, and with a suitably weighted nose fly rather well.  They were done blank, so the Scouts could add their own decorations and liveries.  They seemed to enjoy it all anyway, which is the main thing.

Amys Spifire, with a pink camo scheme which isn't an attempt to do My Little Warplane, but is in fact based on the serious historical fact that the RAF employed pink photo-recon Spitfires in the war.

My own somewhat more traditional scheme, and in fact my first bit of miniatures sculpture in 2013.

Anyway, that's what we got up to around Christmas.  To my slight surprise I've found out that a fair few people read this blog (it was started on a whim, without any proper expectation it would be read by many people at all), so in an attempt to keep things up, the resolution this year is to do rather more regular updates on it.  Now we finally have something approaching reliable Internet here in 1950's Keighley, it should mean we can add things to the blog a bit more often.