The second issue of RADAR, the RAF Museum’s quarterly magazine, is now available to read for free on the museum’s website and features an interview with Eagle and Swift artist Roy Cross. This interview ties in with Cross’ work for Airfix as the RAF Museum at Hendon is currently host to an exhibition celebrating the model kit manufacturer. The exhibition closes on Sunday 11 May 2014 after which it is due to transfer to the RAF Museum at Cosford later in the year.
The interview focusses on Cross’ work for Airfix, for whom he was a regular box top artist for some ten years during the 1960s and 1970s. Prior to this, he had illustrated many covers for both Eagle and its junior title Swift as well as providing 23 cutaways for Eagle centrespreads which were signed with his distinctive “-CROSS-“ signature.
During his time working for Airfix the company had 75 per cent of the model kit market in the United Kingdom and his painted box tops adorned toy and corner shops windows the length and breadth of the country. Indeed Airfix still use many of his illustrations today, some forty years after he painted his last box top for them.
The interview shows that the 89-year-old artist is somewhat bemused about his Airfix legacy. “I have been painting marine art for over 40 years but I am still best known for my decade spent at Airfix”, Cross says. “I imagine that it is a bit like being an actor that was once on Doctor Who. All anyone remembers you for is being on Doctor Who even when you have a wealth of acting experience after that. I’m not complaining, I’d be very happy to be known for being in Doctor Who but it can be frustrating. I suppose you can’t choose what you are famous for.”
• The full interview is in Issue 2 of RADAR which is available to read for free on the RAF Museum website and the interview with Roy Cross begins on page 22
• There are more details of the RAF Museum’s Airfix exhibition on their website
• There are more details of Roy Cross’ career in general on the Hatfield- Herts website
• There are details of Roy Cross’ Airfix Dogfight Doubles paintings on Steve Holland’s Bear Alley blog
Categories: British Comics, Comic Creator Interviews, Exhibitions, Featured News