Tag Archive | war painting

Combat Gallery Sunday: The Martial Art of Col. John W. Thomason, Jr., USMC

Much as once a week I like to take time off to cover warships (Wednesdays), on Sundays (when I feel like working), I like to cover military art and the painters, illustrators, sculptors, and the like that produced them.

Combat Gallery Sunday: The Martial Art of Col. John W. Thomason, Jr., USMC

Born in Huntsville, Texas, 28 February 1893, John Thomason was a Southerner with a family tree steeped in military tradition. His grandfather was no less a person than Thomas Jewett “TJ” Goree, one of Longstreet’s closest aides, who was immortalized in Michael Shaara’s The Killer Angels.

Goree

Goree

An uncle and four great-uncles had also been Confederate officers. As noted by Donald Morris in an excellent 1993 article on Thomason, Grandfather Goree was closer to John than his father was, and taught him to ride, hunt, and fish while he developed a passion for sketching.

It should have come as no surprise that, after spending two years at the Art Students League in New York City, and a year as a cub reporter for the Houston Chronicle while training at civilian military camps during the summers, that Thomason rushed to join the Marines when the U.S. entered World War I in April 1917.

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Not too much difference from Gramps…

After a good bit of stateside training, 1st Lt. John W. Thomason, Jr., U.S.M.C., arrived in France in May 1918, in the 1/5 Marines, part of the 2d Division, American Expeditionary Forces. Fighting with his platoon (and later as Executive Officer of the 49th Company) in five major engagements and fourteen battles, including Belleau Wood, Château-Thierry, San Mihiel, Soissons, and Mont Blanc, Thomason led from the front.

As noted by the Naval History and Heritage Command, “When a German machine gun nest held up a Marine advance at Soissons 18 July 1918, Thomason and one of his men fearlessly advanced on the position and killed 13 of the enemy. For his heroism he received the Navy Cross and the Silver Star.”

5TH MARINES AT CHAMPAGNE Champagne, France 1918. By John W. Thomason, Jr., USMC

5TH MARINES AT CHAMPAGNE Champagne, France 1918. By John W. Thomason, Jr., USMC

Remaining in the Marines during the “peacetime” between the two World Wars, Thomason found time to write and illustrate together no less than 11 books including Fix Bayonets (1926), Jeb Stuart (1930), Gone to Texas (1937), and Lone Star Preacher (1941) while serving a very diverse career that included deploying to Cuba, Nicaragua, China (where he was at the Legation in Peking in the 1930s and documented the China horse marines in his sketches during his time as the commander of the 38th Company); served as commander of the 103-man Marine det on the cruiser USS Rochester; serving as an aide to Assistant Secretary of the Navy Col. Henry Roosevelt; and worked at the Latin-American desk of the Office of Naval Intelligence just prior to Pearl Harbor.

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The Automatic Riflemen, Fix Bayonets

The Automatic Riflemen, Fix Bayonets

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China Horse Marine

China Horse Marine

Chinese soldier on horseback

Chinese soldier on horseback

Cantonese soldiers in China 1932

Cantonese soldiers in China 1932

When WWII came to the U.S., Thomason was made a Colonel attached to Nimtz’s staff and, though in poor health due to ulcers and cardiovascular issues, served as war-plans officer and inspector of Marine land bases. He toured forward areas in the Solomons and survived a Japanese air attack that left all the other men in his slit trench dead.

Coming down with double pneumonia and his health continuing to decline, he was released and shipped back to the West Coast for stateside duty. There, at the Naval Hospital at San Diego on March 12, 1944, he died at age 51.

tumblr_n0a0jtkavz1s19ppuo1_500A well-known author and something of the W.E.B. Griffin of his time, he was carried by special train to Oakwood Cemetery, Huntsville, while the state of Texas lowered flags to half-staff for the week of his interment.

Recognizing his service, SECNAV named the new Allen M. Sumner-class destroyer, DD-760, after the late Col. Thomason 30 September 1944; sponsored by his widow. USS John W. Thomason remained on the Navy List, seeing action in Korea and Vietnam and having 10 battlestars to show for it, until 1974 when she was transferred to the Republic of China, serving as the ROCS Nan Yang (DD-17) until 2000.

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As for the author, his bestseller Fix Bayonets is still in publication and is considered by many to be perhaps the finest account of Americans in the Great War.

51pRk0gyRML._SX334_BO1,204,203,200_His portrait hangs in the Texas Hall of Heroes at the Capitol in Austin. In addition, the Graphic Arts Building at Sam Houston State University bears his name, as does the special collections room of the university library, which houses a permanent exhibit of his drawings and manuscripts. The University of Texas at Austin also holds a number of his papers.

Besides the extensive collection maintained by the Navy and Marines, Sam Houston University’s Newton Gresham Library has over 3,900 of his works ranging from photos to sketches to paintings online.

Thank you for your work, sir.

Combat Gallery Sunday: The Martial Art of RV Pitchforth

Much as once a week I like to take time off to cover warships (Wednesdays), on Sundays (when I feel like working), I like to cover military art and the painters, illustrators, sculptors, and the like that produced them.

Combat Gallery Sunday: The Martial Art of RV Pitchforth

Roland Vivian Pitchforth was born in Wakefield, West Yorkshire on 25 April 1895. Studying at the Wakefield School of Art and Leeds College, his formal art education was interrupted by the Great War when Pitchforth volunteered for Wakefield’s own 106th Siege Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery.

After seeing the elephant on the Western Front, from which he always carried a hearing loss, he soon became an art instructor himself, teaching at the Clapham School of Art, St Martin’s School of Art and the Royal College of Art in the 1920s and 1930s while producing very British watercolors.

Floods circa 1935 Roland Vivian Pitchforth 1895-1982 Purchased 1938 http://www.tate.org.uk/art/work/N04933

Floods circa 1935 Roland Vivian Pitchforth, From the Tate

View of Harbour - Folkestone circa 1920 Roland Vivian Pitchforth 1895-1982 Bequeathed by the artist 1983 http://www.tate.org.uk/art/work/T03663

View of Harbour – Folkestone circa 1920 Roland Vivian Pitchforth 1895-1982 Bequeathed by the artist 1983. In the Tate collection.

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When the Second World War came, the still spry 43-year-old partially deaf art teacher volunteered once more and became an official war artist for the Ministry of Information, and then later for the Admiralty, under the aegis of the War Artists’ Advisory Committee as a temporary captain in the Royal Marines

In the early months of his appointment, he painted coastal boats and seaplanes in action and traveled on convoys to the Azores and Gibraltar, often seeing combat first hand while armed with only a sketchbook.

three Kingfisher seaplanes stand in an aerodrome consisting of corrugated metal hangars painted with camouflage patterns Pitchforth, Roland Vivian

3 Kingfisher seaplanes stand in an aerodrome consisting of corrugated metal hangars painted with camouflage patterns Pitchforth, Roland Vivian

Pitchforth, Roland Vivian Seafox heading down a slipway, surrounded by sailors. Ahead, a second plane is already in the water

Seafox heading down a slipway, surrounded by sailors. Ahead, a second plane is already in the water

Pitchforth, Roland Vivian Protection Pits for Dispersed Aircraft, Lee-on-Solent landbase floatless kingfisher swordfish

Protection Pits for Dispersed Aircraft, Lee-on-Solent, note the landbased float-less Kingfisher in the foreground and the Swordfish in the back

grey-coloured Swordfish sitting on a runway, facing away from the artist Pitchforth, Roland Vivian note the contrasting shadows

Grey-colored Swordfish sitting on a runway, facing away from the artist Pitchforth, Roland Vivian note the contrasting shadows

Hurricane Test Pilots, Henlow

Hurricane Test Pilots, Henlow

Activities begin as soon as the mist blows out to Sea, 1942. In the foreground, a Short Sunderland prepares for take-off on a calm sea. To the right there is a dense wall of pink-colored mist, and further out to sea there are three large ships. This is one of the more artistic war paintings I have seen.

Activities begin as soon as the mist blows out to Sea, 1942. In the foreground, a Short Sunderland prepares for take-off on a calm sea. To the right there is a dense wall of pink-colored mist, and further out to sea there are three large ships. This is one of the more artistic war paintings I have seen.

HMS Brecon escorting an Aircraft carrier from Algiers. Brecon (L76) was a 1,900-ton Hunt-class destroyer of the Royal Navy that was present at almost every major amphibious landing in the Med and took part in the sinking of the German submarines U-450 and U-407.

HMS Brecon escorting an Aircraft carrier from Algiers. Brecon (L76) was a 1,900-ton Hunt-class destroyer of the Royal Navy that was present at almost every major amphibious landing in the Med and took part in the sinking of the German submarines U-450 and U-407.

A Parachute-landing 1940

A Parachute-landing 1940

Motor Gun-boats going on Operations 1943 note the calm turquoise sea

Motor Gun-boats going on Operations 1943 note the calm turquoise sea

Night Exercises in Plymouth Sound

Night Exercises in Plymouth Sound

Motor Gun-boats in a Night Action

Motor Gun-boats in a Night Action

HM Submarine Torbay in Dry Dock at Plymouth, 1942. A T-class sub, Torbay, (N79) had the misfortune of being involved in two incidents regarded by many as war crimes when her skipper was accused of ordering his crew to fire on Axis troops as they swam in the water during Med ops.

HM Submarine Torbay in Dry Dock at Plymouth, 1942. A T-class sub, Torbay, (N79) had the misfortune of being involved in two incidents regarded by many as war crimes when her skipper was accused of ordering his crew to fire on Axis troops as they swam in the water during Med ops.

HMS Eskimo and other Destroyers Fitting Out at Durban. Note how the bollard frames the work and if you didn’t know better, would think is the subject. Eskimo (F75) was a Tribal-class destroyer that was a bruiser. She fought in Norway (losing her bow at Narvik), the Mediterranean (being blown apart by German dive-bombers), the English Channel and in Burma. She chalked up U-971.

HMS Eskimo and other Destroyers Fitting Out at Durban. Note how the bollard frames the work and if you didn’t know better, would think is the subject. Eskimo (F75) was a Tribal-class destroyer that was a bruiser. She fought in Norway (losing her bow at Narvik), the Mediterranean (being blown apart by German dive-bombers), the English Channel and in Burma. She chalked up U-971.

He also covered the war effort at home and the Blitz firsthand when he wasn’t white-knuckling destroyers at sea.

The bomb damaged House of Commons in Westminster after an air raid, 1941

The bomb damaged House of Commons in Westminster after an air raid, 1941

View inside a bombed telephone exchange, filled with piles of wires and rubble 1941

View inside a bombed telephone exchange, filled with piles of wires and rubble 1941

Post office building 1941

Post office building 1941

The City Temple Church, London, EC4

The City Temple Church, London, EC4

Snack Time in a Factory 1941

Snack Time in a Factory 1941

Towards the end of the war, Pitchforth spent most of 1944 in the Med and was sent out to the Far East, witnessing the end-game of the Burma campaign.

Convoy leaving Gibraltar 1944

Convoy leaving Gibraltar 1944

Loading an English Carrier and the French Cruiser ‘Gloire’ at Algiers. This watercolor is particularly interesting for its depiction of ‘dazzle’ painting, a technique designed to disguise the hulls of ships and render them less visible as targets. On 18 September 1940, the ‘Gloire’ was intercepted by the British and brought to port in Casablanca where she was neutralized.

Loading an English Carrier and the French Cruiser ‘Gloire’ at Algiers. This watercolor is particularly interesting for its depiction of ‘dazzle’ painting, a technique designed to disguise the hulls of ships and render them less visible as targets. On 18 September 1940, Gloire’was intercepted by the British and brought to port in Casablanca where she was neutralized and worked with the Allies the rest of the war. Notably, she remained in service into 1958, spending most of her post-WWII life in Indochine waters.

He made numerous watercolors of Colombo Harbor in Ceylon before joining the combined amphibious and airborne attack on Rangoon with the commandos during which he improvised a scheme for painting camouflage on the amphibious landing craft to minimize the threat of airborne attack.

First British Troops in Rangoon 1945. Note the landing craft

First British Troops in Rangoon 1945. Note the landing craft

Picking up a severe lung infection in Burma, he was invalided out in South Africa and remained there until able to travel again in 1948, returning to London.

Cruiser HMS Enterprise at Simonstown, South Africa: Christmas 1945. Enterprise (D52) was an obsolete 7500-ton WWI-era Emerald-class light cruiser brought out of retirement during WWII and used for escort duties and naval gunfire support, firing over 9,000 rounds on D-Day alone. Ironically, the old behemoth sank a German torpedo boat with a torpedo, which is something I didn't know was even possible. When Pitchforth ran across her, she was in the last days of her service, helping return British troops from Asia and Africa before being broken up. Pitchford was in South Africa at this time recovering from his own war aliments. In many ways, when he painted this work, Pitchforth and Enterprise were the same.

Cruiser HMS Enterprise at Simonstown, South Africa: Christmas 1945. Enterprise (D52) was an obsolete 7500-ton WWI-era Emerald-class light cruiser that carried Ethiopian King Haile Selassie into exile in 1937. Brought out of retirement during WWII she was used for escort duties and naval gunfire support, firing over 9,000 rounds on D-Day alone. Ironically, the old behemoth even sank a German torpedo boat with a torpedo, which is the ultimate in irony. When Pitchforth ran across her, she was in the last days of her service, helping return British troops from Asia and Africa before being broken up. Pitchford was in South Africa at this time recovering from his own war aliments. In many ways when he painted this work, Pitchforth and Enterprise were the same.

Now in his 50s and a veteran of both World Wars, Pitchforth returned to teaching for another 20 years, and was made a Senior at the Royal Academy and a member of the Royal Watercolour Society.

He passed in 1982 at age 87.

The Imperial War Museum has 90~ pieces of his art online, many in high rez, while other works are in the MoD collection the GAC, indexed through Art UK and at the Tate in Liverpool.

An extensive bio is here.

Thank you for your work, sir.

Combat Gallery Sunday : The Martial Art of John Falter

Much as once a week I like to take time off to cover warships (Wednesdays), on Sundays (when I feel like working), I like to cover military art and the painters, illustrators, sculptors, and the like that produced them.

Combat Gallery Sunday : The Martial Art of John Falter

John Philip Falter was born during in 1910 Plattsmouth, Nebraska. In high school, the enterprising young man created his own comic strip which helped gain him a spot at the Kansas City Art Institute in 1928, then the Art Students League of New York City (briefly, like a month type of briefly) and the Grand Central School of Art.

Gaining work producing pulp covers, his first steady work came when he was paid to create three illustrations a week for Liberty Magazine in 1933 and was soon getting on in advertising slicks for everyone from Vultee to Pall Mall.

Adventures of the Blackgang

Adventures of the Blackgang

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When WWII came to the States, the 32 year old illustrator signed up for the Navy and was soon put to work making recruiting posters and other illustrations for use by the sea service, soon garnering the rank of a full lieutenant in the Reserve.

 

John Falter's Hit Hard! Hit Fast! Hit Often! of 1944 pictures a view from the bridge of a carrier. The poster's hero is Admiral 'Bull' Halsey, Commander of the U.S. Third Fleet, shown leaning forward to take on the enemy wearing his navy flight jacket and holding high powered binoculars.

John Falter’s Hit Hard! Hit Fast! Hit Often! of 1944 pictures a view from the bridge of a carrier. The poster’s hero is Admiral ‘Bull’ Halsey, Commander of the U.S. Third Fleet, shown leaning forward to take on the enemy wearing his navy flight jacket and holding high powered binoculars.

The man we look up to, Vultee Aircraft, 1943, John Falter

The man we look up to, Vultee Aircraft, 1943, John Falter

Note how Falter signed these Navy posters as "Lt, USNR"

Note how Falter signed these Navy posters as “USNR”

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One print produced by Falter, A Strange sort of Prayer, is a haunting depiction of a Marine on a far off beach saying a blessing over the destroyed pillbox of a Japanese machine gun nest, “You see, God, I’d like to get home too.”

A Strange sort of Prayer (John Falter, 1945 Navy Poster, industrial incentive division)

A Strange sort of Prayer (John Falter, 1945 Navy Poster, industrial incentive division)

It was not his only religious-themed military work during the war.

By His Deeds...Measure Yours was published in LIFE and the Cornet

By His Deeds…Measure Yours was published in LIFE and the Cornet

No More Mr. Nice Guy

No More Mr. Nice Guy

He is best know for his recruiting posters and pamphlet illustrations for the U.S. Naval Reserve (Women’s Reserve), better known under the acronym WAVES for Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service, established in the tale end of 1942.

john falter waves ranks NH-72089-WAVE-recruiting-poster-WWII-payscale-700wide

WAVE At War, Ships At Night .NHC Accession #: 45-127-N "WAVES were not eligible for combat duty. Their assignments remained stateside or in the territories of Hawaii and Alaska. But recruiting posters often depicted the contributions of WAVES to combat victories. Here, Falter superimposes a female enlistee over a battle scene, as though she stands for all the WAVES-parachute riggers, machinists' mates, gunners' mates, and others who will make this victory possible. This type of image not only brought in new recruits, but it boosted morale among the WAVES, reminding them that their work was directly impacting the war effort and strengthening the might of Navy forces."

WAVE At War, Ships At Night .NHC Accession #: 45-127-N “WAVES were not eligible for combat duty. Their assignments remained stateside or in the territories of Hawaii and Alaska. But recruiting posters often depicted the contributions of WAVES to combat victories. Here, Falter superimposes a female enlistee over a battle scene, as though she stands for all the WAVES-parachute riggers, machinists’ mates, gunners’ mates, and others who will make this victory possible. This type of image not only brought in new recruits, but it boosted morale among the WAVES, reminding them that their work was directly impacting the war effort and strengthening the might of Navy forces.”

WAVE With a Silhouette Of a Machine Gun. NHC Accession #: 45-127-O. At Treasure Island in San Francisco, WAVES served as gunnery instructors, teaching sailors how to shoot anti-aircraft guns. Women received this specialized training at the Naval Training Station, Great Lakes, Illinois.

WAVE With a Silhouette Of a 40mm Bofors Gun. NHC Accession #: 45-127-O. At Treasure Island in San Francisco, WAVES served as gunnery instructors, teaching sailors how to shoot anti-aircraft guns. Women received this specialized training at the Naval Training Station, Great Lakes, Illinois.

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Note the control tower operator “T” rate on the WAVE PO3. By the end of the War, it was common at the myriad of stateside bases that had sprung up since 1942 for WAVES to be running most of the show.

WAVE Parachute Rigger, NHC Accession #: 45-127-I. Falter used an official Navy photograph as the source for this painting. The photograph appears in a recruiting pamphlet printed in February 1944, the same month the Navy printed 40,000 posters and 45,000 window cards of Falter's painting.

WAVE Parachute Rigger, NHC Accession #: 45-127-I. Falter used an official Navy photograph as the source for this painting. The photograph appears in a recruiting pamphlet printed in February 1944, the same month the Navy printed 40,000 posters and 45,000 window cards of this painting alone, shown below.

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john falterOn_the_same_team,_Enlist_in_the_WAVES,_U.S._Navy_poster,_1943 john falter waves

During the War, he also started producing covers for the Saturday Evening Post, which he continued to do for decades after the end of hostilities, making a total of 129 covers by the late 1960s. Many of these today look like storyboards from Mad Men.

Golf – 1950s style – by John Falter

Golf – 1950s style – by John Falter

Frosty in the Freezer by John Falter

Frosty in the Freezer by John Falter

First weekend at the cottage, home life in America 1954

First weekend at the cottage, home life in America 1954

Snowy Ambush by John Falter

Snowy Ambush by John Falter

FalterPostCoverChristmasMorningBajaIn 1974 he was commissioned to do a series of six paintings for the American Bicentennial of 1976 by the 3M Company entitled “From Sea to Shining Sea.”

falter-john4_3m74 falter-john2_3m74Besides this, he produced 200 paintings in the field of Western art, dozens of book covers from everything from Mark Twain to The Scarlet Pimpernel. His work also appeared in Esquire, Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan, McCall’s, Life, and Look.

imag008In all, Falter is believed to have produced more than 5,000 works by the time of his death in 1982 at 72.

The Naval History and Heritage Command has some 60~ or so images on line in their database from Mr. Falter, some in very high res while the Museum of Nebraska Art and Nebraska Historical Foundation has his papers and several other images to include a series of portraits he did in the 1960s and 70s of famous jazz musicians.

And of course, the Saturday Evening Post has about 80 of his covers online.

Thank you for your work, sir.

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Combat Gallery Sunday: More Hugault

Much as once a week I like to take time off to cover warships (Wednesdays), on Sundays (when I feel like working), I like to cover military art and the painters, illustrators, sculptors, and the like that produced them.

Combat Gallery Sunday : More Hugault

We’ve always been a big fan of French aviation artist Romain Hugault and have covered his work a couple of times here on the site.

While a relative youngster (born in 1979) his work has gained international acclaim. The son of a military pilot, he earned his own pilot’s license at age 17.

With his first work, Le Dernier Envol, was published in 2005. Since then he hasn’t turned back and in the past decade has become a favorite aircraft illustrator of airshow posters, calendars, military prints and the like. Among his best known work is his illustrated novels Le Pilote à l’Edelweiss, and Le Grand Duc.

Then there is scriptwriter Yann who along with Hugault created “Angel Wings” which delves into the universe of the actual 10th U.S. Army Air Force’s 80th Fighter Group, specifically the 89th FS known to history as the famous Burma Banshees.

From Hugault’s blog (mechanically translated)

The story takes place in the heart of the Burmese jungle during the Second World War, and introduces the WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilots). In 1944, the Japanese forces occupy the whole of Burma and continue to advance towards India and China. The pilots of the American forces are attempting to help their allies by carrying out continuous airlifts with these two countries.

Angela Mc Cloud, a female pilot at the controls of a “C-47 Dakota”, is on an official mission to fly over the “Hump”, the eastern Himalayas, in order to provide the Chinese troops with weapons and equipment and tip the scales in the war. More secretly, her superiors have entrusted her with a more perilous mission – that of investigating what is disrupting air traffic on the Burmese front.

Even though women pilots are not authorized to fly over the Burmese front, “Angel” will have to prove herself in order to win the respect of the “Burma Banshees”.

r hugault ti burma bansees angel wings 5 r hugault ti burma bansees angel wings 4 r hugault ti burma bansees angel wings r hugault ti burma bansees angel wings 2 r hugault ti burma bansees angel wings 3 r hugault ti burma bansees angel wings 6 r hugault ti burma bansees angel wings 7 r hugault ti burma bansees angel wings 8

His website

Thank you for your work, sir.

P.S. For reference, below is real-life U.S. Army Air Force pilot, Shirley Slade, a WWII WASP who ferried B-26 and B-29 bombers and, I think, carries a passing resemblance to Angela McCloud. Just saying.

Shirley Slade, WWII WASP pilot of B-26 and B-39

Combat Gallery Sunday : The Vietnam Combat Artists Program

Much as once a week I like to take time off to cover warships (Wednesdays), on Sundays (when I feel like working), I like to cover military art and the painters, illustrators, sculptors, and the like that produced them.

Combat Gallery Sunday : The Vietnam Combat Artists Program

Usually on CGS, we cover individuals, but this particular weekend is dedicated to the 40~ soldier artists of the U.S. Army’s Vietnam Combat Artists Program:

Between 15 AUG 1966 and 14 JAN 1970, nine Combat Artist Teams (CATs) operated in Vietnam traveling with various units, gathering information and making sketches of U.S. Army related activities. They would embed with troops on the ground for 60 days then rotate to Schofield Barracks, Hawaii for 75 days to decompress and paint from their sketches, photographs and imagination. The work then became government property curated by the  U.S. Army Center of Military History to help document the war.

Private  First  Class Jim  Pollock was sent to Vietnam as a soldier artist on US Army Vietnam Combat Art Team IV from Aug. 15 to Dec. 31 1967 and has a 26 page article (with more than a dozen varied images) of his experience online. In this work he described the varied nature of the art produced.

The  idea of rotating teams of young soldier-artists from a variety  of  backgrounds and experiences through Vietnam was innovative. What was even more remarkable is that these soldier-artists were  encouraged to freely express and interpret their individual experience  in  their own distinct styles. The artists responded enthusiastically to  their artistic free reign, and the resulting products were wide-ranging and comprehensive.

Styles and media used were as diverse as the artists themselves, some  chose detailed literal images while others preferred expressive almost abstract explosions striving to replicate the horrors of war. Certainly,  a  lasting legacy of the army’s soldier art program is that it helped bring military art into the modern era.

After the Battle Tan Hep, Vietnam By Michael R. Crook, 1967.

After the Battle Tan Hep, Vietnam By Michael R. Crook, 1967.

COMBAT IN THE CENTRAL HIGHLANDS Vietnam by Bruce J. Anderson

COMBAT IN THE CENTRAL HIGHLANDS Vietnam by Bruce J. Anderson

Member of a Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol by Bruce J. Anderson Vietnam

Member of a Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol by Bruce J. Anderson, Vietnam

Soldiers Getting the Word by Theodore J. Abraham Vietnam

Soldiers Getting the Word by Theodore J. Abraham Vietnam

Mortar Attack Counterfire Ronald A. Wilson, CAT IV, 1967

Mortar Attack Counterfire Ronald A. Wilson, CAT IV, 1967

The Cave by Ray Sarlin, 1970

The Cave by Ray Sarlin, 1970

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Roger Blum, Vietnam Combat Artist Team I, discusses his painting Attack at Twilight,

Roger Blum, Vietnam Combat Artist Team I, discusses his painting Attack at Twilight,

Attack at Twilight Roger Blum, Vietnam, 1966

Attack at Twilight, Roger Blum, Vietnam, 1966

“Last Stand” – Phillip W. Jones, 1967-68 vcap

“Last Stand” – Phillip W. Jones, 1967-68 vcap

“Unreal Realities” – Ronald A. Wilson, 1967 vcap

“Unreal Realities” – Ronald A. Wilson, 1967 vcap

“Looking Down the Trail” – James Pollack, 1967 vcap

“Looking Down the Trail” – James Pollack, 1967 vcap

Killed In Action” – Burdell Moody, 1967 vcap

“Killed In Action” – Burdell Moody, 1967 vcap

“Wounded” – Robert C. Knight, 1966 vcap

“Wounded” – Robert C. Knight, 1966 vcap

“Swamp Patrol” – Roger Blum, 1966 vietnam combat art project

“Swamp Patrol” – Roger Blum, 1966 Vietnam combat art project

Easter Sunrise Base Camp English, Vietnam By Michael R. Crook, 1967

Easter Sunrise Base Camp English, Vietnam By Michael R. Crook, 1967

Street Scene Vietnam By Kenneth J. Scowcroft, 1967

Street Scene Vietnam By Kenneth J. Scowcroft, 1967

Viet Cong Suspects Vietnam By Ronald A. Wilson, 1968

Viet Cong Suspects Vietnam By Ronald A. Wilson, 1968

Much of their work is on display across the nation in various military museums, installations and federal buildings while Pollocks’s essay is part of the Library of Congress and he continues to be outspoken about his time in South East Asia as well as the program as a whole.

Much of the paintings are available online at the CMH’s website.

Thank you for your work, gentlemen.

Combat Gallery Sunday : The Martial Art of Vernon Howe Bailey

Much as once a week I like to take time off to cover warships (Wednesdays), on Sundays (when I feel like working), I like to cover military art and the painters, illustrators, sculptors, and the like that produced them.

Combat Gallery Sunday : The Martial Art of Vernon Howe Bailey

Born in Camden, New Jersey in the peaceful time that was 1874 in the United States, young Vernon Howe Bailey was a skilled artist already in his youth, earning a place at the Pennsylvania Museum School of Art in Philadelphia at the tender young age of 15. This led to further study in London and Paris and by 1892, at age 18, he was a regular illustrator on the staff of the Philadelphia Times back in the day when virtually every image was drawn rather than photographed.

Fitchburg elevator fire of 1898

Fitchburg elevator fire of 1898

While at the Times, he submitted works to weekly and monthly periodicals such as Scribner’s, Harper’s, Leslies Weekly and Colliers— all big names at the time. In 1902, he left Philly and took a job at the Boston Herald.

Before the Great War, he toured Europe extensively and created enduring architectural studies that preserved the lamplight era just before the lamps themselves were blown out.

Brasenose College, Oxford by Vernon Howe

Brasenose College, Oxford by Vernon Howe

Red Lion Passage

Red Lion Passage

Corpus Christi College, Oxford

Corpus Christi College, Oxford

Antwerp

Antwerp

When WWI came, he did war work for the Navy and some of these images grew acclaim for their attention to detail. in fact, he was the first artist authorized by the U. S. Government to make drawings of America’s war effort in the Great War.

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NH 86449 USS Kaiser Wilhelm II

NH 86449 USS Kaiser Wilhelm II

NH 86451 USS NEW YORK (BB-34) and USS ARIZONA (BB-39) fitting out note torpedo boat loading fish

NH 86451 USS NEW YORK (BB-34) and USS ARIZONA (BB-39) fitting out note torpedo boat loading fish

NH 86454 USS NEW MEXICO (BB-40) Building

NH 86454 USS NEW MEXICO (BB-40) Building

USS Barracuda in dry dock

USS Barracuda in dry dock

Postwar, it was more architecture and travel, though the number of pieces he did per month began to dwindle as his rates had gone up in accordance with his renown. He was even commissioned to produce watercolors for the Vatican.

When the Second World War came, it was back to work with the Navy. Throughout the war he toured extensively stateside and created some of the best military art of the era from any pen or brush.

An entire set of 22 watercolors sprang from a three-week long stay in March 1942 at NAS Jacksonville where he recorded the seaplane operations there with a more painterly approach than he did in 1918.

Landing planes at NAS Jacksonville.

Landing planes at NAS Jacksonville.

PBY Patrol planes at the beach.

PBY Patrol planes at the beach.

Patrol plane on the air station apron.

Patrol plane on the air station apron.

Crane hoisting a sea plane from the St. Johns River.

Crane hoisting a sea plane from the St. Johns River.

Apron with patrol squadron planes.

Apron with patrol squadron planes.

Hauling a sea plane up the ramp.

Hauling a Kingfisher sea plane up the ramp.

Patrol Plane 33.

Patrol Plane 33.

Seagoing Rescue Tugs,” by Vernon Howe Bailey, Watercolor, 1942, 88-165-LN. This painting went south http://www.navalhistory.org/2010/04/12/misappropriated-navy-art but, as noted by the NHC, was recovered: "This painting recently returned to us from a DC area auction house. The consignor had found it at a Goodwill store, I’m told. Its last location before it went missing was with the Bureau of Ships before 1969. One of our local NCIS agents very kindly visited the auction house two hours before the start of our first big snowstorm in February to let them know the Navy had a claim on the painting."

Seagoing Rescue Tugs,” by Vernon Howe Bailey, Watercolor, 1942, 88-165-LN. This painting went south but, as noted by the NHC, was recovered: “This painting recently returned to us from a DC area auction house. The consignor had found it at a Goodwill store, I’m told. Its last location before it went missing was with the Bureau of Ships before 1969. One of our local NCIS agents very kindly visited the auction house two hours before the start of our first big snowstorm in February to let them know the Navy had a claim on the painting.”

Combat Art entitled View of a PB2Y in a Camouflaged Revetment by Vernon Howe Bailer (No. 397). Courtesy of the Navy Art Collection. National Archives photograph, KN 24436.

Combat Art entitled View of a PB2Y in a Camouflaged Revetment by Vernon Howe Bailer (No. 397). Courtesy of the Navy Art Collection. National Archives photograph, KN 24436.

Combat Art entitled, PB2Y-2 Taking off from the Water by Vernon Howe Bailer (No.396). Courtesy of the Navy Art Collection. National Archives photograph, KN-24437.

Combat Art entitled, PB2Y-2 Taking off from the Water by Vernon Howe Bailer (No.396). Courtesy of the Navy Art Collection. National Archives photograph, KN-24437.

Postwar, he returned to New York and continued where he left off, never fully retiring.

In addition to numerous medals, ribbons and awards, Bailey was a full and celebrated member of the Society of Illustrators and of the Architectural League of New York.

He passed in 1953 in New York City, at the ripe old age of 79.

Besides works maintained by the NAS Jacksonville and the Naval Historical Command, he is also exhibited in the Smithsonian’s extensive collection who maintain some 600 of his illustrations and papers, North Carolina State University the French War Museum in Paris and the Corcoran Gallery in Washington. A number of his architectural drawings from the Victorian era can be found online at The Victorian Web.

Thank you for your work, sir.

Combat Gallery Sunday : The Martial Art of Y. Mizuno

Much as once a week I like to take time off to cover warships (Wednesdays), on Sundays (when I feel like working), I like to cover military art and the painters, illustrators, sculptors, and the like that produced them.

Combat Gallery Sunday: The Martial Art of Y. Mizuno

Y. Mizuno is a Japanese watercolor artist who specializes in war art, specifically the ships of the Imperial Japanese Navy’s Combined Fleet in World War II. His work is truly epic.

Yugumo class destroyer

Yugumo class destroyer

Chiyoda

Chiyoda

IJN submarine with piggyback midget sub. prior the attack on Pearl harbor 1941

IJN submarine with piggyback midget sub. prior the attack on Pearl Harbor 1941

IJN Akitsushima flying boat tender

IJN Akitsushima flying boat tender

Heavy cruisers Tone and Chikuma during the Battle of Leyte Gulf.

Heavy cruisers Tone and Chikuma during the Battle of Leyte Gulf.

Heavy cruiser Furutaka during the Battle of Savo Island.

Heavy cruiser Furutaka during the Battle of Savo Island.

Destroyer Take under attack by a B-25 Mitchell bomber during the Battle of Ormoc Bay

Destroyer Take under attack by a B-25 Mitchell bomber during the Battle of Ormoc Bay

Destroyer Kuwa during the Battle of Cape Engaño, an aircraft carrier in the background

Destroyer Kuwa during the Battle of Cape Engaño, an aircraft carrier in the background

For more, please visit the Marine Gallery where the work of Mizuno as well as the art of Takeshi Yuki, an artist and a war veteran himself and Mr. Ueda Kihachiro reside.

Thank you for your work, sirs.

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