Bay Window

Today’s artwork is an evidently quick drawing from his sketchbook by Australian official war artist Eric Thake aboard a Consolidated Catalina, depicting a crewman on lookout in the portside gun blister.


I was looking for other Thake artworks*, but this one jumped out at me as an exceptional work as a sketch. In a National Gallery of Victoria set and entitled ‘Sketchbook – By Air From New Guinea’ it shows a swift mastery of the subject and penmanship to encompass so much detail in so few lines, and the experienced professional watchfulness of a long-range over water crewman on the lookout for enemy activity.


Here’s two photographs showing how accurately Thake’s captured this remarkable repetitive sight. On the left, two RAAF airmen, taken by John Harrison, but in this case over Borneo, from the Australian War Memorial collection here. On the right a US Navy airman adopts a similar position, as found here.

James Kightly, Vintage Aero Writer.

*We will return to Thake with another post – in fact here. Image cropped from the NGV’s website posted version here.

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