This commission comes with a bit of a disclaimer, due to it's heavy and dark subject matter. It's based on one of a series of paintings by Thomas Hart Benton which were created in the wake of Pearl Harbor.
Benton's objective for this series of paintings, called "The Year in Peril", was to "portray America's enemies as genocidal maniacs".
I made this commission for someone who wished to incorporate more realism into the figures, particularly in their clothing, more symbology that would speak about or against the war, and incorporation of some of the elements of the American propaganda that Benton likely looked at when creating the paintings.
These paintings were not looked upon favorably when they were created, but you can see the from the original, pictured at top, that Benton painted these with a passionate anger and in a fervor. My mission was to recreate the composition and color palette, while using hindsight to reinvent the concepts. As with all assignments, I keep my personal feelings to myself, even when creating horrifying imagery.