Over the years, the 747 has been host to some fantastic livery paint schemes. In most cases it would be a tribute to an event, a location or something of cultural significance. I wanted to use this entry to look at some of the more popular artwork that has graced the 747’s fuselage. As I looked back, I noticed almost all of these pieces of art belonged to Asian, Australian carriers or Air New Zealand. I don’t know why…..is it economics? pride? competition with others? If anyone has an insight, please share it.

courtesy of Lufthansa

Now of course, we all know who has the nicest corporate livery in commercial aviation today (just look to the left) but that does not mean there have not been several great examples of custom artwork by non-German carriers. I've gathered some of the most popular ones and put them together below. As I was digging up some of these images, I forgot just how beautiful these aircraft can be.

With the imminent arrival of the next generation Boeing 747-8i, it is safe to say that the canvas has only gotten bigger and I hope that the tradition of unique paint schemes continues for a long time! I hope you enjoy the look back at some of the more popular designs.

If you have your own favorite livery examples (it does not have to be a 747), I hope you'll share it (just email it in). In the coming days I'll start a new permanent gallery dedicated to "special" one-of-a-kind paint schemes and would love your additions.

Ansett Australia's Olympic Tribute

Qantas' Australian Grand Prix Tribute

Japan Airlines' Tokyo Walt Disney Tribute

What are the odds! Both of ANA's Pokemon designs show up together.

This Singapore Airlines 747 met with disaster on October 31, 2000 when it attempted take off from a closed runway that was full of construction equipment at Taiwan's Chiang Kai-Shek Airport . 83 of 179 passengers were killed.

Air New Zealand's tribute to "The Lord Of The Rings"

South African Airways showing off national pride

Thai Airways' classic "boat"

ANA's "Peanuts" tribute

A beautiful Malayasia aircraft