Qantas have unveiled a new special livery on a Boeing 787 Dreamliner registered VH-ZND, their fourth aircraft to arrive. It adapted from an artwork by an Australian Aboriginal artist Emily Kame Kngwarreye (pronounced Emily Karma Nung-war-ray). The aircraft is also named after her.

This is the fifth special indigenous livery Qantas has applied to one of their aircraft. They are very beautiful and really make an impression when overseas.

Dreamliner Livery

Emily’s 1991 painting, Yam Dreaming, has been adapted for the aircraft by Balarinji design studio who also worked with the airline on the previous special aircraft. Qantas have a special web page here dedicated to the story of the painting and the artist.

The original painting depicts the culturally significant yam plant, an important symbol in Emily’s Dreaming stories and a staple food source in her home region of Utopia, 230km north-east of Alice Springs. It will be great to see it when it’s out of the paint shop.

Previous Indigenous Aircraft Liveries

It’s night time in a far flung land and I am at the airport on a warm night. Eventually it is time to go to the gate, and what do I see waiting to take me home? It’s Boeing 747-438 Wunala Dreaming, the first Qantas aircraft painted in an indigenous livery.

Another flight, this time a domestic service operated on an international Boeing 747-338. My one chance to fly on this type of aircraft and when I arrive at the gate, what do I see?

Nalanji Dreaming, resplendent in blue, which just happens to be my favourite colour. This was only a month before the aircraft was retired from service so I was very lucky indeed. The others, I have not had a chance to fly on.

Yananyi Dreaming, a Boeing 737-838, is no longer in her special scheme which is a real shame since it’s very pretty. Mendoowoorrji on the other hand is still flying so I still have a chance.

It takes many hours of paint work and design to get these aircraft looking right. They are a real slice of Australia and I think they’re amazing.

Overall Thoughts

I love a special livery, whether it is a modern aircraft painted in historical colours, or just something interesting and eye catching. It makes a break from the usual aircraft on the ground and people at the airport enjoy seeing them.

What do you think of the Qantas efforts over the years? Do you have a favourite? Thanks for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.

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Yananyi Dreaming by Robert Frola via Wikimedia Commons.
Mendoowoorrji by YSSYguy via Wikimedia Commons.
All other images by Qantas. The other two Dreaming aircraft via