8/5/11

TWA - Props to you.

This ad made it through our strict editorial committee because the picture is so nice. Shiny airplane. Puffy clouds. And the ad comes to us from a time when air travel was an Exciting New Wonder and the airlines viewed luxury as a point of pride. "Not only can we fling you through the sky to Moscow, but we can do it in style." Now it's more of a dehumanizing forced march.

In 1954, the Jet Age was just about to happen, making this whole "travel in luxury" thing get even better for another decade or three. Part of the reason I like the James Bond movies so much is the coolness of airports, and the swankiness of air travel back then. Pan Am still existed then, and in my mind, epitomizes the coolness of jet travel at the mid century mark.

Anyway, this props-and-pistons plane is pretty nice too. Nice red stripes. Look at how happy the people are in the serving suggestion illustration, too. I'm sure a modern airline ad would have a similar picture, but it would be rather a huger lie than this one is, I think.

A plane like this is begging to be popped out of its ad and posted as a PNG. It seemed simple at first, because the shape of a plane is easy to trace with the old pen tool, but you know what? By the time I got to the propellers, I was already committed. They're spinning, of course. So they're blurry, which means they're not so easy to cut out of the photo. Soooo, I had to do it the hard way.

See? I can't just "cut around them". Not only is the edge hard to discern, but there'd be green grassy color mixed into the props, which would look stupid over transparency.

So, I cut out the plane, ignoring the props. (That vertical thing is an antenna, not a propeller blade.)

Then I painted in some pie-slice shapes of dark color, sampled from inside the engine cowl, just to be sure the tones match. Then I blurred them a lot, and erased the outer tips of the pie slices, because they should be moving round and round at a faster speed than the center of the hub, right? Also, I had to reverse the texts and flags on the flipped versions. Whee. Add some film grain to try and match the photo and ding, it's done in only twice the time I expected. Oh well.

Who likes airplanes? Yeah? What flavor? Did someone say PNG flavor, with transparency sprinkles on top? Get your spoons ready, left click through for full size, and then and right click them with your rude finger.





3 comments:

Da Weave said...

Very cool. I too long for the old days when air travel was a romantic adventure, rather then the frantic misadventure it usually is today. Thanks' for the graphic gift.

Anonymous said...

"Props" to you... i get it ... cute :-)
- non mouse

PhilAreGo@gmail.com said...

Yep. Pretty clever with that pun, huh? Thanks for frequently flying, Non-Mouse!

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