Getting in the air with an aircraft is the ultimate high in aviation photography! The air-to-air though can be a challenge though for so many reasons, and a whole lot more. One approach you might try is one I have used and that’s getting involved in a project. You can think of it as “paying your dues” by putting in the time with a project before it flies getting your foot in the door. You have a front row seat and once the aircraft flies, you are a known factor to the owner. You might be Googling projects right now thinking this is the way to go. Well …
There are two factors you need to keep into consideration. The first is time. I started a project in 2012 and it just now had its first runway tests. It hasn’t taken to the skies yet. That time is a big factor. You might not have the time to stick with a project that long. A couple of projects I had to bow out of because of this as time is precious and one can only do so much. The other down side to time is, the project never sees a conclusion. It is not inexpensive restoring an aircraft to airworthy. Some projects never finish. What happened to me twice is the project was sold to another owner across the country. I physically couldn’t stay with the project. But then there are those projects where it did all come together.
F2G-2 Super Corsair 11.11 captured by D3s / 24-70f2.8
Bob was such a genuinely great human! I was very fortunate to find him at the beginning of my aviation passion when he was in the final stretch of finishing his second Super Corsair #74, F2G-2. I flew to the hangar in SD a number of times as I really wanted to just be around Bob & Casey. Then I got the call a few days prior to turning over the corncob for first time. I cashed in airmiles and was on the next flight. You look at the top photo, the pipes are still all chrome. As soon as the corncob turned over, they bronzed. A few months later, Bob was kind enough to honor me with the first A2A photo mission of #74. We lost Bob in #74 a couple of years later sadly. I was very fortunate though to capture the story so I can share it to this day. Consider getting involved in a project for all the right reasons. You just might find it was wroth the long way to an A2A!