The Intrepid painting is an accurate replication of the original Intrepid, which first flew in the American Civil War. Basing his illustrations off historic photos, drawings and notes Todd recreated the illustration that existed on the original balloon more than 150 years ago.
The Intrepid replica project was championed by historians and aviation enthusiasts across North America. Renowned documentary filmmaker Ken Burns, adventure balloonist and Virgin Group Chairman Sir Richard Branson, and the Smithsonian Institution National Air and Space Museum's senior curator of Aeronautics Tom D. Crouch have given their praise to the reconstruction.
Todd partnered with the Genesee Country Village & Museum, located between Rochester and Buffalo, on this project.
This hand-painted replica includes an eagle spanning 25 feet from wing tip to wing tip, the American flag in its clutched talons and the framed portrait of General George McClellan.
The painting process was painstaking. Todd first made a transparency of his original illustration, projected it to full scale on pattern paper, and perforated the images. Finding the center lines of the balloon, he rolled the patterns out and transferred the images with a charcoal pounce bag through the holes. He then penciled the full size image onto the balloon.
*Images are our own and sourced through GCV&M and friends.