Westland Wyvern sketch

Westland WyvernWestland Wyvern – Fleet Air Arm attack fighter from the early 1950s. Turbo-prop with contra-rotating propellers and one of the most wonderful clunky examples of technodork ever. It’s interesting to take this aircraft and compare it to the Fairey Swordfish, a biplane torpedo bomber that the British were using just ten years before this time of this plane.

This is out of my sketchbook,  rarity of sorts as I don’t work in my sketchbook nearly as much as I did ten years ago. Age continues to creep up on me and sometimes it is all I can do just to hold a pencil. It is interesting though – over the course of my career as an illustrator I have had to resort to light tables, projectors and photographs more than once, but now that I am older I find that tracing a photograph never yields a product anywhere close to the quality that comes from me sitting down with just drawing tools and paper.

This is more of a caricature of a Wyvern than an exact depiction, but I think it conveys the feeling of the aircraft better than something more realistic. That’s why I have students draw a caricature of themselves for information cards rather than falling back on photos. The drawings always convey more information than the lens.


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