Squadron Patches of the United States Army 8th Air Force
This is very long term project. It started as a way to fill in gaps in time between painting projects, or while I didn't have the opportunity to put brush to canvas (or leather) to keep my skills in good currency.
The project is related in part to my work in aviation art and nose-art. As time has developed, I began researching the squadrons and bomb-groups associated with the patches.
Each patch represents a whole squadron, made up of a multitude of individuals. Each with their own story and combat history. I think that is something worth thinking about.
My time growing up in East Anglia where much of the 8th AirForce was based during WW2, my family and I visited countless control tower museums which are peppered across the region. My ambition is to donate all of these patches to one of those museums and have in one glimpse the entire 8th Airforce.
Before then, I have purchased an A2 style leather flight jacket which will have the patches temporarily adhered to. It will for a short time be the 8th Airforce Memorial Jacket.
This project is still ongoing with new patches being made every week. I have under 200 left to complete. They are painted on real leather with acrylic.
You can see my progress on Instagram.
Combat Squadrons of the Air Force World War II. Albert F. Simpson Historical Research Center and Office of Air Force History Headquarters USAF, 1982.
Echoes of East Anglia. Martin W. Bowman, Halsgrove, 2006.
Characters of Military: WWII Insignia Illustration (Walt Disney, c. 1940s)
Art of the Flight Jacket: Classic Leather Jackets of World War II. Jon A. MaGuire & John P. Conway. Schiffer Military/Aviation History, 1995.
Mitchell Masterpieces: Volume 1. Wim Nijenhuis, Violaero, 2017.
Battle Colors: Insignia and Aircraft Markings of the Eight Air Force in World War II: Volume I: (VIII) Bomber Command. Robert A. Watkins, A Schiffer Military History Book, 2004.
Battle Colors: Insignia and Aircraft Markings of the Eight Air Force in World War II: Volume II: (VIII) Fighter Command. Robert A. Watkins, A Schiffer Military History Book, 2006.
Battle Colors: Volume III: Insignia and Tactical Markings of the Ninth Air Force in World War II. Robert A. Watkins, A Schiffer Military History Book, 2008.