To be honest I'm not much of a photo manipulator. I use Picasa and MS Paint which only have rudimentary image editing capabilities. This has proven a major obstacle to creating my own bespoke backdrops for my airports. I'm no Raimond Schulz that's for sure - though to be fair his backdrops are a lot smaller and tend to need to work from only one angle. After much fannying about I decided to fall back on the same tried and trusted method that I had used previously with the now defunct Dowse National project i.e. buying some backdrops!
Coincidentally at exactly the same time I was thinking of this I received only my second ever donation to the site's upkeep. The Paypal button has hardly been a money spinner so for now Yesterday's Airlines has so subsist only on my $$, which is a shame. We'll have to see how much the renewal cost is in November :(. Anyway I would like to thank Alejandro Carnevali from Italy for his donation, which enabled me to purchase a backdrop. I thus dedicate this post to Alex.
The backdrop I purchased came from the excellent Airport Diorama Designs. At the site he has several backdrops you can buy and for this project I needed a decent (but also anonymous) city backdrop so I selected model airport backdrop 4. The product comes in a series of 12 A4 sized pages. To minimise the joints I resized and merged the images onto A3 size and then printed them off at work!
Next once back at home I stuck them to a thin back of plyboard using a glue stick. The backdrop was so long there was enough to do a full back and side of the diorama. Above you can see the airport work area I have in the hobby garage. The joins are quite obvious but I found that using Picasa it is easy to make them disappear - even at corners as you can see below.
I'm really happy with the result and this step will now mark a major expansion for Xin Long's presence on the web. Within the next week or so the airport will have a website of her own and will hopefully become an excellent showcase for my collection of modern Chinese airliners.
This blog illustrates my tinkerings with my various model airport dioramas and discussion of the model manufacturers output