It all started with a small message on the Facebook page of the Belgian Air Force A109 Display Team. The message read:
We are planning to renew our special paint. We are missing a nice design of the griffon to put on the sides. If someone can provide us with a design or drawing, please let us know!
Immediately after reading the message, DutchAviationPhoto.com team member Jeroen van Veenendaal went to work on a preliminary design for the helicopter. Being a graphic designer and illustrator in daily life he has the experience, but never before did he make such a large scale design. It was obvious that the design had to be a big griffon, since the griffon is the mascot of the 17th Squadron MRH. After a few sketches, the initial design was presented to the display pilots. They were impressed, and decided to go with this design. After a few changes (the A109 still has to be used in operational conditions) the design was finally approved and a planning was set up to paint the helicopter at its home base Beauvechain. The 1st Wing paint shop did an awesome job of masking painting and airbrushing the aircraft, and the result was better than expected.A design featuring the griffon was also made for the name badge and the patch for the team members.
After completion of the design and the approval of the demo for 2015, DutchAviationPhoto.com was invited for a special visit to Beauvechain AB. We got the opportunity to photograph all the Belgian Air force demo teams during sunset en in the night. A unique opportunity, and very rewarding, as you can see below.
We want to thank the Belgian Air Force very much for all the the things they did for us in the past couple of months. Especially display pilots Filip Peremans and Kevin Beckers for their cooperation and hospitality, 1st Wing paint shop Beauvechain for the paint and airbrush, Jozef van den Broeck and Jo Heylens for arranging the photo shoot.
Report by Jeroen van Veenendaal.
Photos by Filip Peremans and Jeroen van Veenendaal.