My love for flying and graphic design go hand-in-hand. In 1995, I paid for my private pilot license by airbrushing T-Shirts at Six Flags theme park in Illinois. I have worked in the creative/design field for a long time; I attended (and later was an instructor at) the Sign Painting program at St. Paul Technical College, and have taught airbrushing workshops across the country.
In late 2015, a random conversation with a stranger led to an unexpected opportunity for me to become a part-owner of an early 1940s Piper J-3 Cub. Now I had to get my tailwheel endorsement; something I thought about doing since getting my Private Pilot license. The timing was perfect; after not flying for several years, I had recently started training again and wanted a new challenge.
Switching from a rental Cessna 150 to my vintage Cub did not come easily or naturally to me, but thanks to a great tailwheel instructor and lots of practice, I got my tailwheel endorsement. My first season flying it (2016), I logged 112 landings and got to take my daughter up for her first ride in a small plane. After getting my tailwheel endorsement, I wanted a memento of my hard work. Specifically, I wanted a taildragger pilot wing pin. I couldn't find one I liked, so I designed my own, and figured other tailwheel pilots might like one also. In 2018, we added Glider and Seaplane wings with the same high attention to detail, and in 2019 we added Drone Pilot wings which became our biggest seller.
I have over 25 years experience in graphic design, and I am very picky about details, a lot of work went into the design and tooling of our unique wing pins.
The modest proceeds from the sales of our pins help put gas in the Cub, and also help defray the costs as I get continuing flight training to be the safest pilot I can be.
In 2018, helped in part by your purchases, I earned my FAA Flight Instructor rating (CFI-S) in the Cub. Thank you!
Jerry V. taildraggerpilotwings.com Bloomington, MN
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