U.S. Navy Pencil Art
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The Family History Files of Dalton Ray Phillips









I spent most of my adult life serving in the U.S. Navy or working for the U.S. Navy as a civilian contractor. It is one of my favorite subjects to draw about.


I don't claim to be an artist but I do like to draw. I do a lot of it now that I am retired. I am pretty much home bound and drawing is relaxing for me. I do all of my drawing with a mechanical pencil loaded with 2B leads. PLAIN AND SIMPLE - THAT IS MY WAY. 

At last count, I had almost 400 sketches stashed away in my digital achieves. Some good, some bad, most about average

- all done by me. I typically turn out 2 or 3 new sketches every day. 

I will refresh this page often with new drawings.


If you have comments, suggestions or criticism just send me an email.


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Guided Missile Destroyer: Guardian of the seas.  
A sailor has a word with the Chief. As always, the Chief gets in the last word.  
A young British Navy officer circa 1770. The British did not take the talk of rebellion by the American Colonists seriously. They did not believe they would actually do it. Besides, if it happened, they had little to fear from them. They were the mighty British Empire. It was all a big joke for them.  
The Captain has placed the ship at General Quarters. All hands are at their battle stations and are ready for action. The Captain has turned the ship and they are approaching a suspicious vessel the lookout spotted on the western horizon several minutes ago. The Ship's Gunner stands by on the the gun deck, with all of his gun crews at the ready.  
The Ship's Bosun briefs the crew on the Navy's Equal Opportunity Program. Of course, we all know there was no such thing as Equal Opportunity back then - in the Navy or anywhere else. The best advice for a young sailor would be follow his orders and keep his  mouth shut. .  
A sailor aloft swings from the running rigging of a sailing ship. Rope riggings such as depicted here were placed around the working deck of a sailing ship to provide the sailors with a means for getting to the masts, yard arms and sails quickly, so they could do their work and handle emergencies. More permanent standing rigging also provided added support for the masts and yard arms. There was a high incidence of masts and yard arms breaking and sails collapsing, causing injury or death for the sailors below. The able bodied seamen spent much of their time aloft. Use of the running riggings enabled several sailors to climb to the site of a crisis at the same time, so they could take emergency action faster and start repairs.  
STAY AWAY FROM MY SHIP! The Japanese Kamikaze attacks during the last days of World War Two were devastating for the ships that were hit. Our sailors performed bravely and saved many ships that could have been lost.  
Captain John Paul Jones. Father of the new American Navy. Said to walk with a bad limp, sometimes using a cane, because of an early injury.  
Captain (Ship's Master) 1790.  
This drawing depicts a young helmsman and an Officer on the open conning station on the deck  of a sailing ship. They are passing through a blinding rainstorm. The rain is heavy and wind blown. The ship is being tossed about. Things are falling and it is noisy. The officer places a hand on the young helmsman's shoulder to calm and reassure him as they sail through very perilous waters. "Hold her steady, lad. Hold her steady."  
Able bodied seaman circa 1790. These men often had to work high on the masts and in the riggings to keep the sails properly rigged and trimmed - sometimes under very adverse conditions. Called "Sail Monkeys", the men were young, agile and fearless.  It was all very dangerous work - not for those with a fear of heights.  
Working as a lookout in the crow's nest. This was one of the most important watch posts on the ship. Perched near or at the top of one of the tallest masts on the ship, the lookout posted there could see for many miles in all directions. Being up there must have been like sitting on top of the world. However - just getting up and down was very dangerous. I would never have made the grade as a mast climber back in those days, as  I have a fear of heights.  
A Sail Monkey hard at work aloft, setting up  the rigging for a new  sail.  
Old Navy enlisted man 1870. The older men usually worked in the shops  as artificers.


Warships stand off close to shore, watching and waiting.  
A Chief  engages in casual conversation with a Seaman while taking a smoke break on deck. No - he is not getting his shoes shined. He is resting his foot on a deck cleat.  
A Navy Chief makes a point.


A break for coffee.  
Navy bluejacket circa 1880.  
Battleship sailor circa 1895


U.S. Navy bluejacket circa 1840  
The Carpenter 1966. CWO4 Mathiassen. Old Navy. WWII vintage, he had 2 ships shot out from under him in the Pacific. A straight shooter, he backed us up 100 percent and expected 110 percent back from us.   He ate up full commanders from the regular Navy like they were gum drops. They were just a bunch of kids to him. "Make an appointmentif you need to talk to me , son", I heard him say to one full commander.  
Navy Chief Petty Officer


The Chief musters the crew.


DCC SIMS, my boot camp Company Commander. I can't remember much about his appearance but this drawing depicts the kind of guy he was: VERY BAD TEMPERED AND MEAN. To give him fair credit - he had a tough job and he did it well.  

Captain on the bridge wing.

CAPTAIN RELAXING IN HIS CHAIR ON THE BRIDGE: The Captain's Chair on the bridge is hallowed space.  No one sits in the Captain's Chair at  anytime. Only the Captain can sit and relax there. If he chooses to take a short nap there, it is his option.  
The loneliness of command at sea. The Captain is reponsible for everything that happens on his ship at all times.  
Captain on the bridge during General Quarters, wearing a battle helmet.


Old Salt. Circa 1910.  
A young seaman slips away for a few minutes to have a coffee break on deck in the open air.  
First Class Boatswain's Mate on station. The boatswain's mates in the deck division are responsible for keeping things topside ship shape. The first class is in charge of supervising their work. What a job!.  
Bluejacket from the Vietnam War Era on liberty.  
Captain visiting with the Command Master Chief in the Goat Locker. I am sure that most Captains would rather spend their time in the Goat Locker than in the Wardroom, if they had their choice about it. The Chiefs are  closer to the Captains age. However, protocol dictates that there must be separation between the officers and the enlisted men, including the Chiefs. The Captain visits the CPO Mess only when  he is invited. On most ships, frequent invitations to visit the Goat Locker are sent by the Command Master Chief to the Captain and they are usually accepted. During the Captain's visits with us, the CPO's were expected to conduct themselves properly. We let the Command Master Chief do most of the talking. We spoke when it was was appropriate to do so - usually when we were spoken to by the Captain. We were not coached about it but we all knew we should be careful about what we said. We should be politically correct at all times.  
Helmsman strapped in - ready for heavy weather.  
Happy Boat Coxswain.  
Man Overboard!  
A Saturday with Daddy.  
Ready for liberty call. It was always exciting when we pulled into a liberty port after being at sea for a while.  
Experimental high speed patrol hovercraft the Navy played around  with in the 1980's were interesting. Among them were the PEGASUS CLASS.  More like an aircraft than a ship in many ways, it was capable of amazingly high speeds and was very maneuverable. When operating at full speed, the entire crew had to be seatbelted in. The trip from Key West to Jacksonville did not take long at all and the ride was not that rough. I was hoping something would come of it but the program was scrapped,  due to a tightening of the budget by the Navy.  
When a fire or other emergency happens on a Navy ship,  the Flying Squad responds. This nucleas emergency team is made up of around 20 people. They are led by the On Scene Leader. Their job is to get to the scene quickly and take immediate actions to control the situation and save lives. They do what they can to contain and extingush fires and control flooding. They set boundaries to contain the casualty and keep it from spreading . The On Scene Leader appraises the situation and reports to higher authority. A decision is then made about sounding the General Alarm and going to General Quarters. All of this happens in the span of a few minutes.  
Navy CPO circa 1915.  
Ship's Captain/Master


Ship's Surgeon


Ship's Boatswain (Bosun).  
SShip's Carpenter.  
Ship's Gunner.  
Ship's Sailmaster.  
A Navy Bluejacket from sailing ship times.  
A tall sail ship from the 1800's.  



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