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Craig Kodera - Light the Candles! -  LIMITED EDITION CANVAS Published by the Greenwich Workshop

          Light the Candles!
by Craig Kodera

Original Retail Price $395.00
May Not Reflect Current Price

Limited Edition of: 50
Image Size: 30"w x 15"h.
Published: March 2019

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Scott Crossfield and the X-15

Beginning at the height of World War II, America joined several other western nations in preparing for high speed/supersonic flight utilizing the new propulsion engine, the jet.

Limitations as to thrust of the new engines negated their use in attempting to break the sound barrier and thus, liquid fueled rocket engines were substituted. These "rocket planes" were couched within the government program known as the X Series of aircraft. The X-1 came first, piloted by the famous Chuck Yeager who officially broke the sound barrier in 1947.

As each successive airplane was developed and flown, the reach for higher speeds was well underway. By the late 1950s, the X-15 made its debut and promised the highest speed yet for manned aircraft: Mach six, or six times the speed of sound.

After successful glide drops, the day for the first rocket powered flight approached and the chief test pilot for North American Aviation, builders of the X-15, Scott Crossfield took to skies, carried aloft under the wing of the B-52 mother ship on 17 September, 1959. Flying over the prescribed 480-mile test route from Nevada to the deserts of Southern California, Crossfield pushed the button and ignited the XLR-11 rocket engines, and history was made.

The X-15 went forward with the new NASA and flew 199 test/research missions in its decade-long career. Not only flying faster, it also flew higher, actually reaching the edge of space. Pilots who attained this altitude were awarded astronaut wings. Of the several pilots who flew the aircraft, two future astronauts made their own history flying the craft. One was Joe Engle, someday-Shuttle commander, and the other, a young, sharp Navy pilot named Neil Armstrong. Flying the varied research profiles brought not only invaluable experience to these two pilot-astronauts but also put them on the map for selection into the space program. Armstrong's great repute rewarded him the job of landing the Lunar Module on Tranquility Plain.

Craig Kodera
Aviation is this artistís living. Painting is a joy and a choice; not his career. Craig Kodera career is as an airline pilot, so each of his paintings reflect an intimate knowledge of how it feels to fly and what it looks like out the cockpit. "I paint what I see," he says,"and my office window is at 35,000 feet." An appreciation of aviation came easy, since Kodera was raised in what he terms an "aviation family," which included an uncle who flew with the famous Doolittle Raiders during World War II. At an age when most teens were trying to ace the driverís test, Kodera had earned his private pilotís license. A love of painting also came early. Kodera started seriously studying it at fourteen. He graduated from UCLA with a degree in mass communications and spent a year as a commercial artist before joining the Air Force Reserve, where he was assigned to the Air Rescue Service and then the Strategic Air Command. There his knowledge of air war history grew while he logged literally thousands of hours flying. Eventually Kodera left the service and joined American Airlines. When he isnít flying, heís usually painting. His artwork is part of the Smithsonian Institutionís National Air and Space Museum permanent collection and hangs in many museums. He is also the charter vice president of the American Society of Aviation Artists, a member of the Air Force Art Program and serves with the Los Angeles Society of Illustrators.


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