Royal date on new aircraft carrier for caricaturist

A Lancing caricaturist who has spent his life following the Royal Navy is set for a dream day aboard an aircraft carrier with the Queen.

Monday, 4th December 2017, 1:13 pm
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 3:28 am
Sean Savage with the caricature he will present on board aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth. Picture: Steve Robards

Sean Savage, who owns Savage Caricatures, is well known for his drawing entertainment at business events and award ceremonies.

But when a navy officer spotted his painting of the new HMS Queen Elizabeth warship on Facebook, he was given the chance of a lifetime.

Sean, 52, said: “I have a huge admiration for the Royal Navy and have been following the construction of the new aircraft carriers for years.”

Sean's caricature of the aircraft carrier and her captain

On August 16 the new HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier made her first visit into Portsmouth harbour.

The ship is the first of two Queen Elizabeth-class carriers, the biggest warships ever built for the Royal Navy.

Sean, whose father was in the merchant navy, hails from Shoreham but now lives in Fifth Avenue in Lancing.

He said: “I went down there to see it, I started off at 5.30am. It was such a historic day, I would not have missed it for the world.

“I was so overwhelmed by the whole thing, to see this ship which I have only seen as a mythical beast for years.”

Sean joined thousands who watched as the ship arrived into the harbour, surrounded by a flotilla of hundreds of smaller boats and watched over by helicopters.

When it came to deciding how best to capture the moment, he chose to do what he does best.

He said: “I wanted to paint it so I started painting the ship.

“Then I thought why not put the captain on there with a golden paddle like he is steering her in.”

While Sean painted the watercolour and ink artwork for his own interest, the piece proved very popular on social media.

In fact it proved so popular that one of HMS Queen Elizbeth’s cyber security officers spotted it and reached out to Sean.

He was asked if he would like to present his painting to the captain, Commodore Jerry Kyd, during the commissioning ceremony with The Queen today.

He added: “Obviously I am proud and my wife is proud.”

Look out next week for pictures of Sean aboard the HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier during the ceremony.