I took this photo a few years ago at an air show, and I always had the idea to change the background but never got around to it. The other night was going through my old photo backups, looking for hidden treasure, a mediocre image to turn into something interesting. I came across this.
It seems a little under-exposed, but the details are clear and sharp. A few adjustments could brighten and sharpen things up.
I found a cloudy sky background that matched the lighting direction. If the sun is above my fighter plane but to the side of the clouds, it won’t look right. Once cut out and pasted the plane onto the cloud background I blurred the prop blades. It adds to the impression that the plane is flying. This was all done in Pixelmator, a less expensive substitute for Photoshop. A real pro could edit the cockpit canopy closed. I decided to leave it alone.
Next I imported the image into Apple’s Aperture to try some different looks. This is what I came up with: