Air Force

November 8, 2013

From artist to engine mechanic

Tags:
Airman 1st Class Betty R. Chevalier
355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs Office

Senior Airman Patrick Corcoran, 755th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron propulsion technician, stands in front of a mural he airbrushed at Davis-Monthan. The mural took him approximately six weeks to complete and is the second of five murals to be painted in the 755th AMXS hanger.

When some Airmen join the military, people won’t know who they are years from now, but once in a while you find someone who leaves something behind.

Senior Airman Patrick Corcoran, 755th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron propulsion technician, is a passionate artist who is leaving his mark in the squadron’s hanger.

Corcoran has always had an interest for art. He draws and does watercolors, but his favorite medium is airbrushing. Growing up, a neighbor who worked as an auto body painter gave him some guidance.

“One day, he pulled out a truck and it had the checkered flag all the way down the side,” Corcoran said. “I asked him about it and he gave me a book on airbrushing and custom automotive painting.”

Along with the book, Corcoran’s neighbor offered him one piece of advice that really stuck. He wished he had gone to art school first and then learned how to do auto paint instead of the other way around.

In 2007, Corcoran received a bachelor’s degree in fine art from the American Academy of Art in Chicago, and tried for two and half years to make his artwork a career.

“It was hard to live off the money,” he said. “One week you might make $2000 and then not get another job for over three weeks.”

When his wife became pregnant, priorities changed. Corcoran decided to join the Air Force.

“I joined for stability,” Corcoran said. “If I were to get sick, it would be okay. What were to happen if my son got sick? He wouldn’t have insurance. I needed to look out for him.”

For two years he put his artwork aside to focus on the Air Force mission.

“I knew how to airbrush,” he said. “What I needed to focus on was aircraft engines. I needed to be able to study and know what I was doing, and do it well. If I didn’t know what I was doing for my job, I would have got kicked out and had to start over again.”

Once Corcoran was settled in and comfortable with his knowledge and experience of engines, he made his way back into the world of art.

“No one in the shop knew I drew,” he said. “They knew I had a degree but they didn’t know in what. I never drew at work or did anything artistic.”

When Corcoran began airbrushing again, he started displaying his work and received very positive feedback. He was even asked to airbrush communication sets for some of his co-workers.

Earlier this year, he talked with his leadership and was approved to airbrush murals in the squadron.

“He is a go-to technician and is very passionate about what he does,” said Master Sgt. Donald Gerhart, 755th AMXS section chief. “He stepped up and asked if he could do some artwork in the hanger. His first task was the painting of the squadron patch and next the EC-130H.”

The mural of the EC-130H Compass Call took him about 36 hours over a six week time span, to complete.

“I would work on the pieces whenever I had down time,” he said. “Some days I would get two hours in, while other days I would maybe get 20 minutes.”

The squadron is working with Corcoran to paint three more murals, however, as much as he loves to airbrush, Corcoran does get burnt out.

“I go through spurts,” he said. “I don’t just do it two hours here and there. When I’m in it, I’m in it for a couple weeks straight, and then I got to take a step back and relax.”

Corcoran enjoys his hobby and finds it a great stress-relief.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
(U.S. Air Force photo by Airmen 1st Class Cheyenne Morigeau)

Davis-Monthan Airman helps Tucsonan

One weather forecaster’s self-aid buddy care training quickly resurfaced when she witnessed a car accident outside the gates of Davis-Monthan. Senior Airman Amanda Boone, 355th Operations Support Squadron weather forecaster, ...
 
 

U.S. Air Force to kick off COOL program

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. (AFNS) — The Community College of the Air Force officially launched the Air Force Credentialing Opportunities On-Line program March 16. Air Force COOL is a pathway for enlisted Airmen to earn industry recognized professional certifications and licenses to enhance their active-duty work and to prepare them as they transition to...
 
 

Military leads the way in equal opportunity

VANCE AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. — What does it take to change a nation? What force has the power to move millions of people in their fundamental views of the world? For Christopher Daniels, a U.S. Air Force colonel, that answer is simple: leadership. In his words, “The true agent of change is true leadership.”...
 

 

Doolittle Tokyo Raiders to receive Congressional Gold Medal

(U.S. Air Force photo) On April 18, 1942, Airmen of the U.S. Army Air Forces, led by Lt. Col. James H. “Jimmy” Doolittle, carried the Battle of the Pacific to the heart of the Japanese empire with a surprising and daring raid on military targets at Tokyo, Yokohama, Yokosuka, Nagoya, and Kobe. This heroic attack...
 
 

AFAF gives all Airmen a chance to pay it forward

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — It’s Sept. 12, 2005. Senior Airman Dennis Hutchison is recovering from a hard day’s work on the flightline of Robbins Air Force Base, Georgia, when he receives a call that tragedy had struck. “I got a notification from my family that my father had passed away,” Hutchison said. “I immediately contacted...
 
 

Rocketry Club ready to take flight this weekend

TUCSON, Arizona – On March 28 and 29, hundreds of rockets will soar into the Tucson sky at Desert Heat 2015. Rocket enthusiasts from around the Southwest will gather for this annual two-day rocketry event, where there’s no cost to watch, and kids always fly free. The rockets that will be launched vary in size...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin