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Sunday, 5 December 2010

Battleships By L Ashwell Wood

It is no secret that the team here on downthetubes are all fans of Eagle comic with John Freeman editing Titan's Dan Dare and Bible Stories reprint books, Jeremy Briggs and Richard Sheaf writing for Eagle Times while Ian Wheeler was the editor of the still missed Eagle Flies Again zine.

Original Eagle's longest serving artist was Leslie Ashwell Wood who is best known for his detailed cutaway paintings that were in around two thirds of all the issues of Eagle published between 1950 and 1969. Wood died in 1973 before Eagle fandom had a chance to talk to him and this has left many questions about this career unanswered.

Recently a selection of his preliminary pencil sketches for various cutaways and other explanatory paintings have come to light and Jeremy Briggs has taken the opportunity to examine these over on Steve Holland's Bear Alley blog. The latest of these prelims is for a King George V Class battleship of the Royal Navy, the type of ship that fought battles again the Bismarck and Scharnhorst in the Atlantic during World War Two. Jeremy compares the seventy year old prelim to its published version and is able to directly link it to a painting by Wood that is held in the UK's National Archives.

There are more details of the battleship pencil prelim by Leslie Ashwell Wood on Bear Alley.

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