Wednesday, January 7, 2009

GPS Failures

This image was for an AOPA article on the various things that can go wrong when using GPS for navigation. Among the problems illustrated are loss of satellite signal; drained batteries in a handheld unit; and confusion over the spelling of a way point. If you look carefully, you can see the GPS satellites on the horizon.

This image was particularly fun because I don't typically get to do evening scenes. Having flown solo at night many times, I recalled what can be a very lonely feeling. There's not much to see at night from an airplane, and the hum of the engine can be all you hear for long periods of time. I wanted the massive horizon and featureless ground to convey that sense of loneliness. I exaggerated the transition from dusk to dark, because I wanted the blackness to hang over the scene, as if it was the pending GPS failure.

What do you think? Did I over think this one? ;)

Originally, I did the image using the Diamond DA42, which looked really nice! But AOPA didn't think the space-aged little twin appropriately represented the airplanes flown by most of their readers. Oh well! I'll get the DA42 into a published illustration one day!

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