Original pencil drawing on archival quality toned paper with colour highlights featuring a Special Air Service Willys Jeep on a reconnaissance patrol in the Libya desert in 1942.
The British Special Air Service (SAS) was founded in 1941 by Colonel David Stirling. Based in North Africa its objective was to undertake reconnaissance missions and small scale raids behind enemy lines, causing as much damage and destruction as possible. Its daring exploits in the deserts of Libya became the stuff of legend. The British SAS has gone to on become one of the world's finest elite special forces units.
The Willys MB Jeep was produced in huge numbers in World War Two and was used in every theatre of combat. Its rugged, tough, no-nonsense engineering made it a perfect vehicle for SAS operations in Northern Africa, first though it needed some modifications. The jeeps had to be able to cover very long distances over difficult terrain in extreme heat and at the same time be as invisible as possible to avoid detection. They were fitted with sand tyres, an enhanced water cooling system and extra sand filtration, most of the radiator grill bars were removed to improve cooling airflow and save weight. The windshield was removed to both reduce weight and to avoid the risk of sun glinting off the glass and giving away its position. Racks were added to hold jerry cans containing both fuel and water. Navigation was key in the vast featureless desert so several aides were fitted including the Bagnold Suncompass. Tow ropes and sand ladders were added in case the jeep got stuck in soft sand. Painted in a sand hue for camouflage and finished off with three or four Vickers K machine guns and you have the iconic configuration that became synonymous with the daring exploits of the SAS in Northern Africa.
The drawing is on top quality, very heavy weight (640 gsm, 300lb) Sanders Waterford Hot Pressed fine art paper stock that has been custom toned with a light sepia hue to perfectly complement the subject matter.
The drawing is triple mounted using high quality conservation mount board. Included in the display are excellent reproductions of the SAS crest in metal and padded uniform parachute wings.
Signed by the artist and supplied with a Certificate of Authenticity.
20 x 16 inches overall including mount, image 15 x 8.25 inches.
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