East Kirby/Just Jane.

By | 21st October 2019

With the air show season on its last knockings, its off to another Time Line event, this time at East Kirby for a Lancaster Bomber sunset/night shoot.

Royal Air Force East Kirby is a former Royal Air Force station near the village of East Kirby, south of Horncastle in Lincolnshire, just off the A155. The airfield in question is now the home of the Lincolnshire  Aviation Heritage Centre Air Museum.

With a 2 hour drive in mind I decided to set off just after lunch and allow the sat nav to direct me, saying that it was a strange route it took me to get  there, did it in just under 2 hours. Once arrived in the village I stopped and had a peak at what the village has to offer, I must say parts of it was like going back to the bygone age, like that type of thing. Once arrived I was greeted to the sight of Just Jane Lancaster bomber which is our intended model for the shoot. Once checked in I managed to take a few images of the said aircraft before thin cloud came upon us,which was set for the rest of the afternoon/evening.

The Lancaster Mk V11 NX611 ,Just Jane was built By Austin Aero Ltd in April 1945, it was named after a popular wartime comic character and these days it is the main popular attraction to the museum as it often gives members of the paying public a chance to have a ride in it, only taxiing. To this day  this particular Lancaster is hopefully being restored to an air worthy condition, who knows we might in the future see two airworthy Lancaster’s  gracing our skies in the UK.

On with the proceedings it was a quick brief in what we can and cannot do  and then the Lancaster was put into position for those of us to take images with and without reenactor’s, as the light was fading fast it was up with the ISO settings, out with the tripods and it wasn’t long before evening turned into night which meant longer exposers and with the grain, sorry noise to contend with it was a mater of controlling the time in which the shutter remained open, all trial and error. Once finished the aircraft was towed to a hard stand and put into position.  With the blue hour approaching it was time for the first engine run with lights put in at strategic points it gave us a chance to take a few images before the engines came to a stop, saying that they were on for no longer then 10 mins and unfortunately it did not give some of us the chance to photograph the aircraft from a different angle.

Once the engine run had  finished it was a chance to place the reenactor’s in an strategic  position under the aircraft with the addition of a bomb trolley, tow truck  and  a motor bike all in aid to create the past. whilst this was going on there were a couple of set ups been made available, one being a mobile Naffi and one being  a fuel truck with motor bike all of which the reenactor’s was part of the scene.  then  it came to the Last  engine run, this time the hard stand was doused in water before engines started just to give a scene of a wet airfield look, another opportunity to photograph the aircraft whilst the props are rotating.

Once finished it was the turn of taking images of the reenactor’s under the aircraft, this time we had some smoke effects, saying that it was a shame that the wind was mainly blowing the smoke in a different direction so the effect had to be worked on in pre processing.
I had a great time with the team from Timeline, we all had ideas in what we wanted and they accommodated us for what some us wanted, thank you Timeline. I for one would like to do this one again, next time I will change my jut to position to get some thing that bit different, I will also go that bit earlier so I can have a look around the museum without rushing  around to cram everything in, maybe its because I’m frightened of missing something.