Personally signed by at least 11 original Flying Tigers, this scene depicts “Tex” Hill and crew bore-sighting the guns of an AVG Tomahawk, preparing for battle in the Asian skies during WWII.
The American Volunteer Group prepares for business out on the firing range in China, 1942. In this scene, AVG ace “Tex” Hill looks over the shoulder of armorer Chuck Baisden as the engines are run up and the wing guns are test-fired on one of the Flying Tigers’ P-40s. Bore-sighting the guns of a Tomahawk in these primitive conditions required leveling the plane, often on the tailgate of a flatbed truck, and adjusting the fire of all guns to converge at a predetermined distance. The expertise and ingenuity of the AVG armorers, crew chiefs and maintenance personnel meant the difference between life and death for pilots who daily confronted the enemy, which ultimately earned the Flying Tigers worldwide fame.
The painting Shark Sighting was completed in 2007. One interesting detail, which fans of the AVG can appreciate, is that the artist wanted to include elements to honor all 3 squadrons, while maintaining historic accuracy (all 3 never flew together at once following training period in Burma). Representing the 3rd “Hell’s Angels” squadron are: Armorer Chuck Baisden (in cockpit) and crew chief Leo Schramm (on tail), arming Tomahawk # 68, flown by the AVG’s first ace, Duke Hedman. Representing the 2nd “Panda Bears” squadron is one of the Tigers’ greatest and well-loved aces, David Lee “Tex” Hill, who did indeed fly various 3rd squadron planes on occasion. Those with sharp eyes will notice near the front wheels, a green apple and dark snake winding its way through the grass, which symbolizes the AVG’s 1st Squadron, the “Adam & Eves,” who displayed the apple & snake insignia on the fuselages of their aircraft..
THE DISPLAY EDITION
This edition has been personally signed by the artist, John Shaw.
THE LIMITED EDITION
Signed by a minimum of eleven AVG veterans from the group listed below:
Armorer CHUCK BAISDEN (3rd Sq.)
Vice Squadron Leader CHARLIE BOND (1st Sq.)
Flight Leader CARL BROWN (1st Sq.)
Clerk Operations PAUL CLOUTHIER (3rd Sq.)
Squadron Leader DAVID “TEX” HILL (2nd Sq.)
Propeller Mechanic ED JANSKI (HQ Sq.)
Flight Leader KEN JERNSTEDT (3rd Sq.)
Flight Leader ROBERT “BUSTER” KEETON (2nd Sq.)
Crew Chief FRANK LOSONSKY (3rd Sq.)
Armorer JOE POSHEFKO (3rd Sq.)
Communications Officer RICH RICHARDSON (HQ Sq.)
Flight Leader DICK ROSSI (1st Sq.)
Crew Chief ED STILES (3rd Sq.)
Communications Officer MORGAN VAUX (1st Sq.)
Flight Leader PETER WRIGHT (2nd Sq.)
THE SPECIAL EDITION
Signed by all 15 of the above AVG veterans.
CANVAS GICLÉE EDITION
Using the most sophisticated digital Giclée technology, each Canvas Proof is printed directly on to fine canvas creating the look and feel of an original painting. Each canvas is custom embellished by the artist.
Available in a variety of sizes: 20×40″, 24×48″, and 30×60″
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