Saturday, November 27, 2010

U.S. Army Infantry Divisions

One more chapter of my “Military Insignia” project has been completed. This time around, I have taken on shoulder-sleeve insignias and distinctive unit insignias of all the active infantry divisions of the United States Army. I had to cover 18 active divisions in total, which resulted in 18 SSIs and 18 DUIs – 36 designs in total to work on. 
Working on this particular stage of the project, I noticed that when divisional shoulder-sleeve insignia was fairly well covered and represented in various paper and electronic publications, it was not quite the same story with distinctive unit insignia. Good descriptions, historical references and quality images of divisional DUIs were fairly scarce, and hard to find. Also, DUIs themselves turned out to be more complex and technically challenging from the designing prospective. The main challenge was to preserve DUI’s metal “badge” look and feel, at the same time highlighting modest and understated beauty of each piece. Another interesting observation was that divisions were mostly associated with and recognized by their shoulder-sleeve patches, when DUIs were far less recognizable or even known by anyone, other than those who actually had a chance to wear them. This is why an idea of showing DUIs and SSIs of each division side by side was so appealing to me.
As with all previous designs included in my “Military Insignia” project, I had to balance between my artistic inclinations and the need to maintain color schemes, precision and accuracy of each insignia. Working with heraldry, one cannot get too carried away, and there is no room for errors. The only areas where I am able to get creative working on my military insignia, are textures and multiple layers with layer effects.

To active duty or reserve military personnel, veterans and their family members: I grant an explicit permission to download the above images to be used for non-profit/non-commercial and charitable causes, benefiting troops and their families, as well as for non-commercial internal duty-specific purposes, such as unit website design, training materials and presentations. 

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