Airlines and airplanes have developed over time, as have their “liveries” or exterior designs, which include paint colors and emblems. Exterior graphics on planes not only reflect the firms that manage them, but they also serve as visual ambassadors for their respective countries as they travel across the world. In a beautiful and effective color scheme, a superb airline livery gives observers a flavor of a carrier’s ideals or culture’s ethos. In recent years, airlines like Southwest, Spirit, and American have altered their liveries, with varying results. Jumbo jets painted for business, private jets painted to the owner’s specifications, and the most terrifying military aircraft on the planet! Here are 30 airplane exterior designs that are just stunning.
The unique paint job on the front of what appears to be a C-130 Hercules airplane by this Duracell battery is fantastic. We adore the basic yet effective custom aircraft paint treatments — it looks exactly like a battery!
It is a great way to promote Duracell AA batteries, the marketing team that came up with this idea is absolutely genius. It is hard to forget about Duracell after you have seen this paint job.
Eye Of The Tiger
The world first saw this bad boy during the 2003 NATO Tiger Meet, a global training event that has been going on for nearly 50 years.
The host unit EC 1/12’s Mirage 2000 RDI 83/12-YL, which you see above, was given one of the greatest aircraft paint jobs we’ve ever seen. Look at how realistic that is, even down to the glitter in the tiger’s eyes. Check out the flags on the wing.
The White Tiger
Look at this French Dassault Rafale M fighter airplane sporting a ‘Arctic Tiger’ paint scheme. How does this one compare to the last large cat-themed fighter jet? The custom-painted Dassault Rafale is certainly scary.
The white and black of the plane makes the red eyes stand out even more. It is really quite an impressive effect and it accurately portrays the fierceness of the jet power. You can see the design clearly from the sky.
The Shark Face
This adorable old-school military airplane seems as lifelike as the vicious shark from Jaws. Aside from the joking, this is a nicely done paint job. It’s very neat and the colors are very vibrant.
The shark’s mouth paint job for the A-10 is unique to the 74th, 75th, and 76th Fighter Squadrons. The A-10 is also famous for its powerful seven-barrel 30mm GAU-8 Avenger cannon and the thundering “BRRRRRRRRT” noise of continuous fire it makes.
The Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II in this paint scheme is one of the few times the Warthog isn’t painted in its traditional battle-gray color scheme. Reindeer, Christmas wreaths, and the red and green color scheme we’ve come to associate with the holidays are all present.
It’s not the most appropriate paint job for combat, since it is red and it does not blend with its surroundings. But maybe it could be Santa’s new ride!
Aeroprakt Company, a Ukrainian plane maker, gave this A-22 a wooden makeover. The aircraft has a steampunk look for those who are into the whole sci-fi counterculture thing.
Outside of its pseudo-futuristic look, the A-22 plane has all the layouts of a classic plane you would expect to see back in the good old days. It probably packs a bit of speed as well, considering how the design goal was to make it incredibly lightweight.
The Hungarian Eagle
Many think this is an American helicopter, but it’s not. The type of helicopter shown in these images is the Mi-24 Hind; the unusually-decorated version pictured here originated with the Hungarian Air Force and was evidently painted with the eagle design by one of its crew members.
The craft was not intended to be used in military operations and carried no armaments; it is strictly a display vehicle exhibited at air shows and the like.
The Brazilian Shark
Embraer, a Brazilian aviation maker, has unveiled a new aircraft with a stunning shark paint. The Embraer E190-E2 demonstration aircraft has been on a globe tour, most recently visiting airports in China after stops in the United States, Africa, and Europe. Galeophobics would wish they had packed aircraft paint remover before traveling on this airplane.
We believe that this terrifying airline paint job would have looked better on a ship or, even better, a submarine.
Who’s to say the era of air superiority fighters has passed us by? The Saab Gripen is their most recent high-tech aircraft. Those wings have a fantastic paint job! The Saab JAS 39 Gripen is a light single-engine multirole fighter plane developed by Saab, a Swedish aerospace firm.
It features a delta wing and canard shape, as well as relaxed stability and fly-by-wire flight controls. The jade green eyes give it a very intimidating look.
The Russian Shark
This Russian airliner has one of the most incredible shark face paint jobs we have ever seen. The image is very realistic, to a point that it gives the illusion of the hollow of the shark’s open mouth.
It’s like the plane will swallow you if you come too near! It inspires fear, but also fascination for the job well done. The passengers must have been pleasantly surprised to fly in such a cool-looking airplane.
The Czech Tiger Hind
Another aircraft that had a makeover for the NATO Tiger Meet is this beauty. The aircraft dubbed “Tiger Hind” won the Best Looking Tiger Aircraft prize at the NATO Tiger Meet held in Zaragoza, Spain, in 2016.
The intricate tiger pattern on this Mil Mi-35 3366 belonging to the Czech – Air Force is what took the judges by surprise. The NATO Tiger Meet hosts aircrafts from nearly 20 countries where they exchange ideas and experiences.
The Maple Leaf
This is The Royal Canadian Air Force’s CF-18 Demo Jet, which has been highly spoken about but rarely seen. The maple leaf, which is the Canadian trademark symbol, is artistically depicted on this custom-painted fighter jet.
It is painted in the traditional red and white of Canada. The CF-18 has a peak speed of 1,127 miles per hour. The jets were painted in honour of Canada’s 150th anniversary and flew 150 metres above ground.
Olive Green Sharks
These are A-10 Warthogs that we’ve all grown to love, but with a twist. We’ve all seen the standard Warthog, but these olive drab green Warthogs with the nose paint job are special.
The nose art is partly derived from the famous shark mouth P-40 fighter planes of the Flying Tigers. Originally, the shark mouth nose art was intended as a form of psychological warfare, partly as self-expression, and generally as a display of aggression.
The Jumbo Tiger
This aircraft is the result of a partnership between Rossi’s Airlines and the Amur Tiger Center. A magnificent Amur Tiger adorns the plane’s nose, which is a Boeing 737. The painting took about 500 kg of paint to finish, which shows how large it is.
The Boeing 747 often referred to by the nickname “Jumbo Jet” is among the world’s most recognizable and most successful commercial aircraft used by many of the world’s leading airlines.
The Duck Face
What you’re looking at is one of several members of the Nok Air fleet of airplanes. It is a low-cost airline in Thailand that operates mostly domestic services out of Bangkok’s Don Mueang International Airport.You’re looking at a Boeing 737-800 painted in the shape of a duck.
If you’re familiar with the airline, you’ll recognize this as one of their quirky custom paint jobs. Unfortunately, Nok Air filed for bankruptcy on 30 July 2020.
The Italian Rooster
This is a creation of Italian aircraft designer and builder Ottone Baggio. The Rooster’s design and construction are completely unusual, with wooden wings, a fabric-covered steel tube fuselage, a big vertical tail, and, weirdest of all, the Rooster neck and head projecting from the leading edge and supporting the 100-horsepower Rotax 912 engine.
The paint job is suitable for a proud rooster, a massive airborne piece of art created with a stunning palette of colors.
The Swedish Dragon
The Saab 35 was the first supersonic aircraft produced in Western Europe (Sweden). From 1955 through 1974, Svenska Aeroplan Aktiebolaget (SAAB) produced these planes with a lot of success. What catches one’s attention is the fantastic red paint job.
By early 1950, it had been intended as one of the first combat aircraft with twin delta wings. The unusual wing shape allowed it to be the first known aircraft capable of performing the Cobra maneuver.
The Salmon Plane
The world’s largest flying salmon was developed by Alaska Airlines. It weighs 91,000 pounds and is 129 feet in length. This Boeing 737-800 is thought to be the world’s most extensively painted commercial airplane.
The fish-plane comes in at 91,000 pounds and measures at almost 129 feet. Is there anything more representative of Alaska than a salmon fish?
The Hellenic Airforce in Greece owns this Dassault Rafale. The aircraft is adorned with a painting of Saint Michael, in keeping with the unit’s name. In the book of Revelations, he is described as the archangel who will lead heaven’s army against the evil forces.
There is another jet with the image of Saint George, the dragon slayer, on it.
The Pepsi Plane
Remember the Concorde? You might certainly have heard of this renowned airplane before, due to its incredible speed. The Concorde’s peak speed exceeds Mach 2.
But here’s the issue about this Pepsi plane and its unique paint job: the vintage Concorde’s livery has to be white for it to fly at full speed. It was quite the marketing move, though!
The Dream Chaser
The private jet in this photo is one of the most recognizable planes ever seen in the sky. The LearJet model 35, dubbed “Dream Chaser 5,” was provided by International Jet Aviation, a Denver-based aircraft charter and management company.
This airplane was used to transport very ill children all over the world, according to where their last wishes took them.
The Multichrome Jet
“SexyJet,” a wicked Gulfstream GV operated by Clay Lacy Aviation, is an apt name for this gnarly Gulfstream GV. This bespoke Gulfstream’s chameleon-like hue is one-of-a-kind and not cheap.
A full-sized galley equipped for cold and hot food preparation, power outlets for office equipment, fold-out work tables, and a private lavatory are all included in the Gulfstream GV jet cabin.
The Santa Plane
This is a hilarious one. “We hit him as we flew over Seattle on our way to the lower 48… “How do we tell everyone?” – stated the fictitious pilot, referring to the fictitious incident in which Santa Claus was hit by a Boeing jumbo jet.
This witty gag added some humour to the Christmas spirit and made lucky kids wonder.
Star Wars Themed
And when it comes to amazing custom paint jobs on commercial planes, All Nippon Airline is, without a doubt, the best. It is remarkable to see not one, but three Star Wars-themed planes.
These ANA airplanes with custom painted designs were a great idea, and each time you can incorporate Star Wars into your product, your client base will grow.
The Masked Airbus
As we know, the Airbus A330-900neo is a massive aircraft!. Some airlines are showing their support for masks in a very ‘big’ way – by painting them on their aircraft.
Indonesian carrier Garuda Indonesia is joining the club by painting a mask onto its brand new Airbus A330neo. It sets an example for the passengers and to the general public.
Colorado State Flag Themed
Southwest Airlines has done a great job at making the Colorado state flag the theme of its airplane paint schemes. Southwest Airlines has one of the best brand languages in the airline industry.
They’ve never been afraid to admit that being bold and different is their primary objective. When you look at their planes, you know exactly where it comes from.
Gulfstreams are incredibly expensive private jets. The people who can afford a ticket, fly in style. They come in different color schemes, making them devilishly good-looking on the outside and luxurious on the inside.
Private people, companies, and executive charter operators utilize the aircraft. It is also used by a number of companies as part of their fractional ownership programs.
Tinkerbell from Peter Pan is the star of the aircraft painting on this Alaska Airlines Boeing. It’s part of a partnership between Alaska Airlines and The Disney Company, where they painted several Disney characters on various planes.
Alaska Airlines has supported the Make-A-Wish Foundation since 1985 and provides air transportation allowing about 80 children’s wishes to be granted each year.
The Strange Creature
If we are being honest with you, we have no idea what’s going on. We can only tell that it’s a Short SC-7 Skyvan 3-100 that was given an odd makeover.
The teeth are disproportionately large, the lips are strange and the color scheme is unusual. If you look closely enough, you’ll see that one of the teeth is missing.
This tough-looking plane is parked in the hangar and it is about to get some work done. Will you please allow him to relax and enjoy his big cigar while he receives his tune-up? Why not take a break yourself while the plane is in for some repairs?
The airplane might not be in the best of mechanical condition, but the paint work sure is spectacular. It looks like the airbrush technique was used here.
The Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II, affectionately known as the “Warthog” or “Hog,” has a small car-sized cannon and is dangerous to whomever dares to fight it. The pattern on the plane’s mouth comes from a tradition originated during WWII.
They took inspiration from the legendary American Volunteer Group, the “Flying Tigers,” which made the shark mouth famous first.
The Royal Air Force of the United Kingdom’s British Aerospace Hawk T1A has one of the more patriotic paint jobs there is. The Hawk T1h is a two-man tandem cockpit single-engine jet trainer manufactured in the United Kingdom.
It is still in production and under licence in India by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, with over 900 sold to 18 operators worldwide.
The Bald Eagle
The F-15E fighter jet, which has been painted to look like a bald eagle, is a high-end custom aircraft paint job. The F-15 Eagle is a high-performance air superiority fighter with a proven track record in air-to-air combat.
It first flew in 1972, and it’s among the most successful modern fighters, with over 100 victories and no losses in aerial combat.
The Sea Turtle
The first of three A380s for All Nippon Airways is rolling out of the Airbus Paintshop in Hamburg, Germany. It’s decorated with the airline’s distinctive and one-of-a-kind Hawaiian sea turtle livery.
ANA is the superjumbo’s first Japanese customer, and all three ANA A380s will be painted in the custom paint job shown here, which depicts sea turtles native to Hawaii.
The Peacock Butterfly Jet
A butterfly-themed aircraft paint scheme was created for a private prop plane in Arizona. The yellow, orange, and red gradient on the wings contrasts nicely with the blue framed angles.
This jet’s paint job is so bright that you will be able to see it cruising through the sky without much trouble. It has the colors of the Peacock Butterfly.
The Digital Camo
The Sukhoi Su-57 was developed by Sukhoi for the Russian Aerospace Forces. This Russian fighter jet’s digi-camo paint job is possibly the smoothest aircraft paint scheme on this list – if not all time.
If you keep up with the US Air Force, you may have seen a recent USAF F-16 paint job that looks suspiciously similar to this one.
What could be more eye-catching than a thirty-foot Buzz Lightyear painted on a plane? China Eastern Airlines collaborated with Pixar to give this plane a makeover that is just spectacular.
Its flamboyant style extends to the plane’s interior. The ceiling, seat covers, luggage containers, and trays are all covered with images of beloved characters like cowgirl Jessie and bear Lotso.
The Kangaroo Plane
Obviously, with kangaroos all over the plane, you’d expect it to be an Australian plane. Qantas is one of the most prestigious airlines of Australia.
“Qantas Airways Limited is Australia’s flag carrier and the country’s largest airline in terms of fleet size, foreign flights, and international destinations,” according to the official website. They proudly represent their people, land and culture.
The Colorful Jet
This aircraft, unlike many others on this list, is not a commercial passenger plane. It is, but it isn’t your typical one. This is actually an M2 Charter Jet, which is usually privately owned or hired.
This aircraft’s painting appears to be the work of a young child having fun with colors. This style has a playful charm to it.
Here we have another exciting Disney collaboration. Roughly a hundred and seventy gallons of paint in about twenty-three different colors were used to paint this scene from frozen on this commercial plane.
This artwork belongs to WestJet, a Canadian airline. A team of talented painters came together from Canada, the United States and Germany to bring this livery to life.