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Inspired by a photo in a book and made in the form of a poster. Elmdon (Birmingham, England) Airport opened in 1939. This de Havilland Dragon Rapide G-ACPP was the first airliner (up to ten passengers!) to land there. The old terminal building still stands; it's a little different now, bit it's a glorious piece of Art Deco architecture in the form of an aeroplane. The Rapide is an elegant 1930s design, with an elliptical biplane configuration and fixed undercarriage in 'spats'.It was operated by Great Western And Southern Airlines Ltd, but at the outbreak of the War, it was acquired by the RAF; later it was operated by Scillonia Airlines, flying to the Scilly Isles. As far as I know, it's still around and flying.

(I've rashly promised to make another with Ryde Airport in the background, as I live on the isle of Wight.)


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  • 1 year later...
On 12/31/2021 at 11:50 AM, Toby Crowe said:

Hi Kaspar, this looks great! Is there any way I could buy a copy? Thanks from Toby (resident of Elmdon, just up the road from the airport)

I've no plans to make it available for sale, Toby -- but you're welcome to copy this image to print if you like. It's only 850 x 1200 pixels, so it wouldn't be very big. 

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21 hours ago, buschbrand said:

Very nice work – but the used Font (Birmingham Airport etc.) looks like Avant Garde or something similar – is not contemporary at this times.

It's Broadway, in fact. I wanted a very bold Deco-style typeface, and I thought this fitted the bill nicely. I didn't know the history of it till you prompted me to look it up, but according to wikipedia:
        The original face was designed by Morris Fuller Benton in 1927 for ATF.

Ah well, whatever, as the young people say. I'm happy with it anyway 😊

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9 hours ago, Kasper-V said:

It's Broadway, in fact. I wanted a very bold Deco-style typeface, and I thought this fitted the bill nicely.

The Broadway font that you used for the title does indeed fit the bill nicely, Steve! I think @buschbrand is asking about the font you used for the rest of the text, with the distinctive long crossbar on the ‘G’, the gappy ‘R’ and the rather narrow ‘S’ and ‘s’, all of the above leading me to believe that it may well be Avant Garde or something similar, as suggested. One possible alternative is Evolventa (which is based on URW Gothic L).

https://www.whatfontis.com/FF_Evolventa.font?text=Great Western Ringway#ct

Alfred spacer.png
Affinity Designer/Photo/Publisher for Windows 1.10 • Windows 10 Home/Pro
Affinity Photo for iPad 1.10 • Designer for iPad 1.10 • iPadOS 15.6 (iPad Air 2)

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4 hours ago, Kasper-V said:

I've no plans to make it available for sale, Toby -- but you're welcome to copy this image to print if you like. It's only 850 x 1200 pixels, so it wouldn't be very big. 

@Toby Crowe

As @Kasper-V has kindly given you permission to print from the image, one option that may be of interest to you would be to produce a customized greetngs card at the online Papier facility.



I know that they are marketed as photo cards but in fact it does not necessarily have to be a photo, what is needed is a jpg file that may, but need not, be a jpg of a photo.

Also, although marketed as sending a card to someone else there is an option of sending it to ypurself, in which case you get an envelope too, but there is no obligation to send it to someone else. I have used the facility many times and I get frames delivered from the supermarket and frme the picture myself.

There is a choice of templates, this one would be good.


I have used that one for some printings that I have done, for others I have used the landscape equivalent one.


There are others that might be suitable, depending what you choose.

For example,


If a customized card is made, one does not get the picture shown on the template, that picture is just an example.

One registers, uploads an image and then drags it onto the template.

One then customises the greeting on the inside.

The template has a sample greeting set up, and one can alter that a bit, or a lot.

I have usually change it all and then used the Garamond font and on one card I got around twenty lines of text printed in Garamond.

When using the


there are, as far as I am aware, two approaches that could be used for this image.

The first is that one lets the Papier system do the work.

It will scale while keeping aspect ratio, so unless an exact fit will either leave white edge at the sides or at top and bottom.

For this image the white is at the sides, yes I have tested it.

Also, there is a bleed area, so for this image the word Elmdon might get chopped off a bit at the top.

The second choice is to start a document in Affinity Designer of the correct size and place the image onto it, possibly scale it, or not, whichever one decides is best, then export a jpg from Affinity Designer. This is what I would do.

A third choice would be to use a template with a border and let the Paper system do that.

I have just had a try using


One thing that I wonder about is how the scaling works.

I have recovered smaller images that i produced years from the web and produced cards using them.

Now, what an art criric or a printing expert would make of the printing in the sense of is it blocky I do not know, but I have got what I regard as good results, but in each case I have scaled by an integer factor of two or three, not some non-integer number.

I just wonder whether a non-integer scaling might produce a weird result, but i don't know, it is just me wondering theoretically.

My instinct would be to place the image on a white bakground and not scale it, so the image would be 4 inches by 2.83 inches upon a 7 inches by 5 inch card.

By the way, Papier prints CMYK, but their input system seems to do what is necessary. I send jpg images that are RGB and i get nice printings. I tried going to CMYK in Affinity designer but the colour got muted and I think, but have no proof, that if I had uploaded a CMYK file the print would not have been as bright as it is.

However, a person at Papier support did advise that colours on printed card will appear darker when printed on paper. However the printings that i have received have been very colourful.

I like the Papier cards as they are a matt finish, some of the card companies produce cards glossy.

Also I am happy to have the name Papier printed on the back of the card. Some other brand names and logos are not what i would want printed on cards that I produce.

However, some of the companies produce A5 size cards, so if one made a jpg file for an A5 card then it would be possibe to scale the image from this thread by exactly 2 both horizontally and vertically. Though I am not sure what to do about bleed areas on any site except Papier.

On a diiferent approach,


does offer posters.

I have no experience of these, maybe someone reading this has and will comment.

I have just had a quick look and it appears that they will dekliver to one's home.


So the bigger the poster the larger the chunks, but the original is at 300 dots per inch.

So it would really come down to a choice, card size or poster size, scaled automatically or not by some non-integer value, or not, matt, glossy, cost.







Using a Lenovo laptop running Windows 10 in England

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20 hours ago, Alfred said:

I think @buschbrand is asking about the font you used for the rest of the text ...

https://www.whatfontis.com/FF_Evolventa.font?text=Great Western Ringway#ct

Thanks for putting me straight on that, Alfred: I obviously didn't read the comment properly. I'll just plead the effects of the season! 😊
Without digging out my archive HDDs I can't be certain, but I think the font is one of the Futena family, which is very similar. I was looking for an open face rather than historical accuracy, and again this just looked the part to me.

17 hours ago, William Overington said:

I like those Art Deco clouds.


Thank you William. I thought it needed something to fill the gap without distracting from the important part of the image. I tried a more natural-looking cloud or two --  in a deco style -- but in the end these very simple ones seemed to work best. You can easily work out how I did them: add some rounded rectangles and/or cloud shapes, convert to curves and tweak a node or two.

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