The Volunteer Reserve, circa 1939

SKU: 11219


The original design for Join the Volunteer Reserve For Young Pilots

Gouache & tempera with air-brush,  on sugar-paper with white border

Some marks from storage

Height – 64cm
Width – 51cm



This original poster artwork, c. 1939, depicts a Harvard Trainer and a  Supermarine Spitfire circling the earth

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Henry Arthur
1913 - 1958

Painter and illustrator born in West Ham, London the son of a ‘School Attendance Officer’. At the age of nineteen Henry Arthur lost a leg when he jumped from a moving train, slipped on ice and fell under the wheels. However, he went on to study at St. Martin’s School of Art and, after a time working in advertising, became a freelance illustrator and painter, specialising in wildlife, especially birds. He was an exhibitor at the Royal Watercolour Society and also painted in oils. In the mid-1950’s Pettit contributed comic strips to Playhour and Jack and Jill annuals, and illustrations, often in scraperboard, to The Eagle, Swift and Girl annuals. From 1955 to 1958 he worked for Playhour, producing “Jungle Days and Woodland Ways” (1955), “The Little Friends of Francis Pitt” (1955-56), “Little Red Squirrel” (1956-58) “Dogs” (1958), “Friends of Little Red Squirrel” (1958) and “All About Cats with Peter and Pam” (1958) in colour on the back page. Suffering from ill-health, Pettit died in August 1958 at Ardleigh, Colchester aged only 45. His surname is often misspelt as ‘Pettitt’.

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