The Legendary GG1

Non-Aviation Art Showcase
The Pennsylvania Railroad GG1 was an icon of railroading. The traction motor got it??   s power through pantographs which were raised to contact the 11,000 volt catenary which was strung above the track. There were 139 GG1 units built from 1934 to 1943. Styled by Westinghouse industrial designer Donald Roscoe Dohner and refined by famed designer Raymond Loewy, the GG1 was an attractive machine. The GG1 could generate up to 8,000 HP and was designed to pull passenger trains up to 100 MPH. Eminently reliable, the GG1 was popular with engineers, train crews and the riding public. She enjoyed a long service life with the Pennsylvania Railroad as well as with its Penn Central, Conrail, Amtrak successors. The last GG1 retired from service by New Jersey Transit in 1983. Several units are preserved in museums around the country. So beloved and remarkable was the GG1 that the preserved prototype unit was designated an Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark in 1983.

   

   
24/06/2012 19:29:41
superb!!!!!!!!!!!!
25/06/2012 05:21:13
Thank you John. :)
25/06/2012 15:19:27
Brilliant Shine on that engine...amazing!
25/06/2012 22:10:23
Very nice, Mark! :D

   

   Over 20 years ago a well-known military aviation author friend of mine suggested that if I *really* wanted to make money with art, I would get into rail art. Being a fan himself, he explained the vastly greater rail audience/fan base, and actually downplayed "aviation art" - or at least the serious pursuit of same. He was right, of course, but this was before the Internet leveled the marketing field a good bit for us independents.

   

   Seeing inspiring art like your piece here reminds me of that sage advice ... who knows? If I ever figure out how to paint airplanes I'll try a few rail projects! Seeing this also reminds me of WWII 359th FG P-51 Mustang pilot Howard Fogg - as you know he went on to have a stellar career as a railroad artist.
26/06/2012 00:58:49
Thank you Len and Wade.

   

   


   Over 20 years ago a well-known military aviation author friend of mine suggested that if I *really* wanted to make money with art, I would get into rail art. Being a fan himself, he explained the vastly greater rail audience/fan base, and actually downplayed "aviation art" - or at least the serious pursuit of same. He was right, of course, but this was before the Internet leveled the marketing field a good bit for us independents.

   

   Seeing inspiring art like your piece here reminds me of that sage advice ... who knows? If I ever figure out how to paint airplanes I'll try a few rail projects! Seeing this also reminds me of WWII 359th FG P-51 Mustang pilot Howard Fogg - as you know he went on to have a stellar career as a railroad artist.

   

   Over 20 years ago your friend may have been right. The railroad art market is not what it used to be. I don't claim to have 100% market penetration so there is room for growth however I sell almost double the amount of aviation art as I do railroad art. Howard Fogg's work is at the very top of the genre. I just love to browse through it.

   

   Like most of us I paint the things that I love. Unfortunately none of those things are popular with the majority of art buyers - females.
26/06/2012 18:24:18
The railroad art market is not what it used to be ...

   

   I don't doubt that at all. Not at all. There are many reasons why, but one huge thing is that the kid like me who loved our train and slot car sets is now into R/C. Anybody who has kids knows R/C is *HUGE*. The shops all have very active R/C groups, and when you walk in the shops all you see is huge planes - and cars - everywhere.

   

   Nothing wrong with that, it's just hard for a small train set, and thus the rail market of old, to compete.

   

   Glad you're selling! My print sales are all but dead in the water. But the commissions are there for originals, and as I mentioned in the past I'm looking to modify my plan by completing more originals of smaller scale (unless commissioned otherwise) to be able to cast a wider net.

   

   Our 'niche' av art market demands putting oneself 'out there', especially today. If it were not for the Internet and social media, I'd very likely not be painting near at the level of activity I am now for sure. As I tell my wife, "Yes, I am in a niche market, but I have little overhead and I only have to please one person at a time!"

   

   Interesting your observation on female buyers. My experience has been across the board male in terms of original artwork - but the female sometimes must be persuaded in the case of a large commission. And, in one case, the wife was not told until only ONE payment was left, and she went ballistic. To save a marriage I refunded the entire amount less the deposit. Actually, one (only one) of my originals has been commissioned by a female, and that was to give to her male friend. :lol:

   

   I guess it comes down to the basic fact that if you're good, you'll sell - even if it's only to people who are 'immune' to the fluctuations in the economy during bad times like this. The smart artist decides a) how to continually improve his work, and b) how to make sure folks know about it! The first is obvious (study, practice, feedback, never giving up), and the second is a challenge for us in this genre in terms of available shows and interested galleries, relatively speaking. I've always thought that if I won the lottery I'd start a permanent aerospace art museum just so people outside of our usual venue of airports and aviation museums would find out that we do exist - and we can paint! 8O :lol:

   

   Keep up the excellent work, Mark - sorry I got long winded.

   

   Cheers!

   Wade
26/06/2012 19:30:34
You misunderstood me when I said female buyer. I only meant that they are the largest purchasers of art in general. My clientele is majority male.

   

   You are right about the hobby shop - RC from floor to ceiling. Not necessarily bad just a new age. Still, I lament the demise of the hobby shop as I knew it. I loved buying model airplanes, trains and rockets. There was nothing so exciting to me when I was a kid but rows and rows of model kits. I used to get up early in summer to caddie for tips at the nearby country club. I would then ride my bike into town straight to the hobby shop. It was one of my favorite places to be.

   

   I agree with you about selling art. There is a huge side to what we create that is very personal. I think it takes alot of energy and emotional investment for an artist to create his work. Sometimes, when I finish a piece I feel completely exhausted; like I've lost another little piece of myself giving form to a new creation. (Am I sounding like Frankenstein yet? "It's alive!")

   

   That being said, selling art is a business and the art is the product we are selling. It is up to us to be sure to offer the best product we can through constant striving to improve and refine and it is up to us to get it out into the marketplace. Fortunately, we live in the age of the internet which helps tremendously with the marketing.
26/06/2012 22:36:22