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William S. Phillips - The Long Ride Home Personal Commission™ -  ANNIVERSARY EDITION CANVAS Published by the Greenwich Workshop

By late 1944, the Allies controlled the skies over the newly liberated countries of Western Europe. But when the bombers of the mighty Eighth Air Force ventured into the heart of Nazi Germany, few missions proceeded without their fighter escorts close at hand. The classic William S. Phillips homage to the bond between the Flying Fortresses and their “Little Friends” is available as a Greenwich Workshop Anniversary Edition.

"The Long Ride Home" features the P51-D Mustang Betty-E piloted by Lieutenant Colonel Wayne Blickenstaff of the 350th Fighter Squadron/353rd Fighter Group. “Ramrod” was the code word that designated these escort missions. Blickenstaff became a double ace during the war, incredibly shooting down five of those ten enemy aircraft in a single mission to become an Ace in a day. By the war’s end, Blickenstaff would receive the Distinguished Service Cross, the Silver Star, the Distinguished Flying Cross with three oak leaf clusters and the Air Medal with seven oak leaf clusters. The 353rd would be credited with destroying 330.5 enemy aircraft in the air and another 414 on the ground. These were the “Little Friends” you wanted around when the going got tough.

A raid into Germany meant a long day and a long mission. It was a grueling, intense and deadly endeavor that was not without its moments of serenity, beauty and a comradeship known only to men at war. The men are tire and some in this armada may be wounded. Soon, with what little light there is left in the day, the groups will separate and return to their bases for debriefing and rest following "The Long Ride Home."

The Long Ride Home Personal Commission™
by William S. Phillips

See the Artist Biography
ANNIVERSARY EDITION CANVAS
Image size: 31"w x 21"h.
Limited Edition of: 112
$595.00

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William S. Phillips
Phillips grew up loving art but never thought he could make it his livelihood. At college he majored in criminology and had been accepted into law school when four of his paintings were sold at an airport restaurant. That was all the incentive he needed to begin his work as a fine art painter. Bill Phillips is now a renowned aviation artist and the landscape artist of choice for many collectors. Bill's strengths as a landscape painter, a respect and reverence for a time and place, help him when painting aviation as well as classic landscapes. Phillips often spends days observing landscape subjects. Finding companionship with the land, he is able to convey the boundlessness of nature on the painted canvas inspiring a reverence for the natural landscape in its beholders. After one of his paintings was presented to King Hussein of Jordan, Phillips was commissioned by the Royal Jordanian Air Force. He developed sixteen major paintings, many of which now hang in the Royal Jordanian Air Force Museum in Amman. The Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum presented a one-man show of Phillips’ work in 1986. He is one of only a few artists to have been so honored. In 1988, Phillips was chosen to be a U.S. Navy combat artist. For his outstanding work, the artist was awarded the Navy’s Meritorious Public Service Award and the Air Force Sergeants Association’s Americanism Medal. At the prestigious annual fund raiser for the National Park Service, Bill’s work has been included in the Top 100 each year he has entered the competition and his work has won the Art History Award twice. Phillips was selected as the Fall 2004 Artist in Residence at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon and tapped by the U.S. Postal Service to paint the stamp illustrations and header design for a pane of twenty stamps in 1997 entitled Classic American Aircraft. He was chosen again in 2005 for a pane of twenty stamps (ten designs) entitled American Advances in Aviation. Bill’s major collection of aviation art, Into the Sunlit Splendor, was published by The Greenwich Workshop Press in 2005.


 

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