Monday, October 02, 2006
I have a large folder with pictures of Marines tagged as prime portrait material. I'm presently working on a couple oil paintings and part of that process is waiting for the paint to dry, or at least set up tacky enough to move on. My oils are based on a simple technique called fat over lean. Early stages are painted with oils thinned with turpenoid and drying medium. Later stages involve thicker applications of paint. A couple pieces I'm wrestling with are in final stages.....so the paint is more direct from the tube and hence takes longer to set up. To fill the down time I've decided to start a series of finished graphite drawings based on these photographs. The images almost all are from times out in the goo when sitting down and doing a life drawing is simply out of the question.
Today's drawing shows a Marine squad leader (note the microphone) taking a quick look at his guys during a momentary lull in the fighting last November in Husayba, Iraq. After looking at this face think about the twenty-somethings you see at the mall....there's no comparison.
Post-entry: Several weeks ago one of the good readers of Fire and Ice posted the comment "When will we stop praising the warriors, and praise the peacemakers?" in response to the post Wounded Warrior. It is quite evident here at Fire and Ice that I, and many of our readers, celebrate warriors....especially in light of the current unfolding historical struggle with Islamofascism. Today, Tuesday, via a wonderful blog called Dr. Sanity, I read a revealatory commentary by Victor Davis Hanson, and the good Doc's accompanying thoughts. Both of these accomplished and lucid thinkers have articulated how the self-proclaimed peacemakers of today's world, the unhinged left-leaning world of feel-good-wishful-thinkingocrats, have both created and nurtured not peace, but the conditions for war. What stands between us and the caliphate chaos of Islamic fanaticsm is not George Soros, MoveOn.org, the DailyKos, the Democratic Party, Code Pink or any other slice of the left's soft underbaked marshmallow pie, but hard young men and women willing, like the Marine corporal pictured here, to strap on a gun, 60 pounds of gear and under the most hostile conditions of heat, dust and death keep reaching for another can of Old Fashion All-American Whoopass. Hanson makes the keen counter-intuitive observation that at the end of the proverbial day it'll be NASCAR guys keeping the legacy of the Age of Enlightenment alive. You're either with these kids or against 'em.....which is it? Drivers, start your engines!