I made a spur of the moment trip to the Tillamook Air Museum last Saturday. I didn’t think a lot would have changed in the year and a half or so since I was there last, but quite a bit did. The entire display has been reorganized and a couple of mainstays are missing. I hope they’re in the process of being restored.
The 159-series F-14A is still there… looks unlikely that it will ever be airworthy again… but it no longer has headliner status. The Tomcats that I worked on were all in the 161 series, but this one is as close to one of those as I’m likely to see again. Looks slightly forlorn, what with the holes on the cockpit where the formerly-classified components used to be.
One thing that hasn’t changed is the lack of light for photography. With the crown of the old blimp hangar being just shy of 300’ above ground, the inverse-square rule for light falloff seems to be magnified. So, taking pictures always results in compromises.
I shot a few knowing that they were pretty much going to stink the place up on their own… the aim was to have something to mess around with once I got back home.
The P-51D shown here has been repainted to match the “Redtail” design used by the Tuskegee Airmen. It’s a simple but striking scheme, and this particular example looks like it would only take a couple of hours of cleanup to make it Smithsonian-worthy.
Original image: ISO 400, f/4.5 @ 1/30 second, 26mm (with kit lens)
Altered in Photoshop with masking and multiple layers, background desaturated and blurred to leave “suggestions” of the hangar structure but de-emphasizing the clutter. Thank goodness for digitizer tablets!
Shot as above, except shutter speed was all the way up to 1/60th.
More messing about in Photoshop. Was it worth it?