One of the main goals of this project was to capture and represent my friends and colleagues who have served overseas. So many friends have committed and sacrificed their time, sweat and even their blood in places like the mountainous Balkans and the sandpits of central Asia. Mike Scott is one of those guys who has seen and done it all.
Mike started his career at the Royal Westminster Regiment and has served pretty much all over the world. He has been a huge backer of my project and provided both material and logistical support. It was his body armor Shaun and I wore in country and he got us access to areas we normally would have been shunned from. Most importantly his insight into the war, Canada's involvement and the humor of the entire mission was absolutely key to getting the full picture.
Mike also has the coooooolest job in the Infantry. Mike is a door gunner on a Griffon helicopter. As mentioned in a previous post, Mike spent time with us and allowed Shaun to take some great photos. These photos are being used on my current piece which I'm tentatively calling 'Ground Support'.
I'm also incorporating some of Shaun's brilliant prose into this painting. In fact, he's written a piece specifically about Mike and his high-speed job:
Turning and turning
Awaiting the falconer….
And when he calls
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world
The guns o' the enemy wheel into line…
What fury be called,
When our word
Is the ‘breath of Allah’
Shaun James O'Mara,