Unseen Naval Artwork
- Thu 09 Dec 2010
A selection of previously unseen behind the scenes illustrations.
The Commando writers and artists have always taken great pains
to make sure the military trappings shown, the uniforms, vehicles
and weaponry, are as authentic as possible. Before the internet
made searching for reference material a much easier task, books on
militaria and military history were the main source of
But you could never take it for granted that the artists, many
of them working in other countries, would have access to the same
reference books. And while the scripts would include details of
what was wanted, too many technical specifications would lose a lot
in translation. Luckily the editorial staff could rely on a large
art department to provide detailed drawings showing precisely what
was required. And, when it came to naval vessels, the late Jeff
Bevan was the man to call on.
As a staff artist, Jeff had drawn comic strips for the likes of
'The Rover', as well as many Commando covers and features. A
lifelong aficionado of ships and boats, which he also painted as a
hobby and a successful sideline, Jeff rarely had to consult any
books, relying on his comprehensive knowledge of the subject to get
him started on the sketches.
Until now, these detailed drawings have gone unseen by all but
the Commando editorial team and the artists who received copies of
them alongside their scripts. Here are just a small selection of
Jeff Bevan's naval drawings, with further examples here and
Detailed side elevation and basic plan of a Norwegian fishing vessel.
Side elevation of a trawler with additional armaments, plus Jeff’s careful notations of what each part’s function is.
Side elevation of an Italian warship, showing the scale of the vessel.
For this interior of a Steam Coaster’s galley, Jeff employed a looser style than the precise linework of the ship exteriors.
Another looser image, this time in pencil only.