The phone went again. It was the chap from Aerospace Publishing asking me if I would like to re-work an illustration they held in their extensive archive of airbrush art. It was a beautiful piece by Chris Davey. The subject was a pre-production Mitsubishi F-2 B (remarkably similar to an F16), the two-seat version flown by the Japanese Air Force. The brief was a challenging one: to convert the two seater to the single seater Defence Fighter, adding camouflage, serial number; weaponry and changing the overall base colour of the original. This was a fairly hefty task because the artwork was a 3-view, showing plan, side and front elevations and obviously each illustration had to match the other. In the end I quoted for 10 hours work but it actually took a great deal longer. These kind of jobs are never easy to price, because you end up rehearsing the whole procedure in your head, which in itself takes time (!) and rarely allows for the occasions when tried and tested methods won’t work and you have to invent another remedy. You can never really anticipate what you are up against until you are in the thick of it. In reality, the main time-consuming element to the whole project was matching the patina of paper surface and spray patterns that make up a piece of airbrush art. Clearly this was the main challenge as no amount of detailed work would have been worthwhile if it looked like it wasn’t really part of the original. So here it is a new F-2 looking like the old one. What do you think?