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Sunday, January 1, 2012

Calendar Plane of the Month, January: Supermarine Spitfire Mark I and Messerchmitt Bf 110c

Agent Triple P has two calendars this year: one of girlies, of course, and another featuring pictures of box art from Airfix model kits.  Agent Triple P, like many of his contemporaries, spent a lot of time making Airfix kits when he was younger and one of the earliest he remembers building was the "dogfight doubles" kit of a Spitfire and a Messerschmitt 110. 

The version that Triple P built was this one with a typically wonderful box art painting by Roy Cross.  This is something of an anachronistic painting in that it puts a Mark IX Spitfire alongside a 1940 vintage Me 110 D.  The new kit, more accurately, has a Mark I Spitfire instead.  These paintings persuaded Triple P to part with most of his pocket money at the time.  Later on, political correctness meant that aircraft couldn't be shown in combat action and, for a time, a photo of the models themselves was used on the box but the reality of these, however well made and painted they were, could never fire the imagination like Cross' artwork.

These days, the cover paintings are produced digitally rather than by using paint but they are still effective and its good to see the action scenes have returned.  These new digital pictures are the work of technical artist Adam Tooby who has managed to put some painterly life into his digital images and has avoided the sterile look that most computer generated artwork has.

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