Sunday, February 18, 2007

Finished......The Skipper

Well....here it is, sculpture #1 is done! I showed it to the curator of the Marine Corps Combat Art Collection, Charles Grow, on Friday and he was very, very happy with the result calling it Rodinesque. He just about made me swear a sacred oath to not touch it! (I have a nasty habit of not leaving well enough alone.)

Charlie is himself a combat artist, having covered Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Haiti, Somalia and Operation Enduring Freedom. He's also an accomplished photographer as well. There is no higher accolade for me than his thumbs up. He's asked me to contact a foundry here in Fredericksburg and start the process of getting it cast in bronze.

The piece, as I worked on it over the past couple weeks, became a haggard rifle company commander. Over the years I've tended to focus almost exclusively on sergeants and below, the grunts. But I've also carefully observed the late twenty-something captains who carry the burden of command with weary grace. The young Marines are lovingly lead and often painfully mourned by their commanding officer, the "skipper". Skipper is a term both respectful, and filled with warmth. It's the un-official moniker for a Marine captain.

As you look at these photos of the piece try and imagine it without the white plaster support. When it gets cast it will only be the plasticine portion.




*Click on images to enlarge


















24 comments:

Bag Blog said...

For what it is worth, I offer my two thumbs up also. After showing your photos of sculpture #1 to my daughter, she thinks we need to take a class on sculpting. I seconded the motion.

Anonymous said...

AMAZING!

Cpl M said...

Freakin awesome! You did a great job, sir.

Anonymous said...

You are an amazing sculptor!! Great Job!!

Carol said...

Mike,

I never cease to be amazed at your many talents. I can't wait to see the final result.

Wanted to tell you we lost a boy from our church in Iraq last week. He's being buried today. Our first. I didn't know him, but it hurts just the same.

Russell Kurtz


I know you'll be returning to the theatre soon. Please be careful.

God Bless!

Anonymous said...

Very fine. Different angles show different things. Please show us the bronze casting. Amazing that you step so easily into using the additional dimension. Look forward to seeing what you do next.
Be careful overseas.
V/R J West

Flag Gazer said...

The Skipper is outstanding!

Do NOT fiddle with it!!!!

Laurie said...

He's beautiful!

countrygirl said...

He's thinking, feeling . . . leading young men, with heart!
I'm in awe.

Anonymous said...

Wow, that's pretty good. I'm glad you're trying something new. Must be nice to have such varied talents.

ARRRGH! The verification word is lmsadzv! Enough!

SK said...

You works never fail to amaze me! Beautiful, as always.

MissBirdlegs in AL said...

So very good, Sir. Touched my heart and brought tears to my eyes, as so much of your work does. You have such a gift!

Buck Pennington said...

Wow, Mr. Fay!! Your photos of the sculpture are awesome, as well. I liked the varied lighting...highlights the different effects/aspects of your work.

And...to be compared to Rodin your first time out by someone you respect is just Too Cool!

Lil Toni said...

Fabulous Mike.
Can't wait to see the bronze.

Samantha West said...

Mike,
You are indeed a world class talent, a master! Your work is truly timeless.

Sam
.
.

Lily said...

Wow, that IS sensational. Or HE is, I should say. What depth you've conveyed, and no joke, a comparison to Rodin -- pretty darn great! (I'd prefer Frederick Remington if it were me, but that's just me.) Just sensational -- I feel like we know this guy. Just like your fab sketches, but ever so much more dimensional (obvs.) You rock.

Brian Dunbar said...

Amazing job - you've got some serious talent there. The Corps is lucky to have you.

It's All Good Now said...

Is this bust a sculpture of a real Marine? You have captured his emotion so accurately, it makes me think that it must be based on a live model.
You've got so much talent, and I am thankful that you are using it for the betterment of our country.

Fathairybastard said...

Beutiful.

C. Ousley said...

Awesome work. Way to carry on the tradition of the best war artists. Thanks.

robin said...

came to your blog via the bbc article. i really admire this sculpture and the soul that comes through in your art.

Anonymous said...

Fantastic sculpture, made more so as I believe it is your first forray into sculpting. I know you plan to remove the plaster support, but I actually like the solidity it creates for the skipper - almost as if he was hewn from the rock or is somehow symbiotic with it - a metaphor in itself to the strength and solidity of the marines; originally I thought you had found a piece of rock and had worked onto it, (only after reading your blog did I discover it was plaster). I look forward to seeing the bronze piece. I discovered your work on BBC News article showcasing your Iraq and Afghanistan paintings. Much respect to you sir as both a soldier and an artist. Adrian Rasburn (UK)

Anonymous said...

I saw your art gallery on BBC pictures and tracked your site. Its amazing to c that you have so many talents and you are updating them even in the most tense situations anyone can face. I really appreciate your talent n highly respect you as a world citizen.

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