Saturday, September 06, 2008

Sweatin' and Sketching with the 25th Marines at Mojave Viper

Marines provide "overwatch" at Range 400

Machine gun crew firing on "Machine Gun Hill" at Range 400, MCAGCC

During the Assault Training at the DAC Course

The FST coordinates mortar fire at Range 400, MCAGCC

More machine gunners in action

81 mm mortar crew in action
Greetings again, Marine Corps (and Marine Corps Art) lovers!

CWO2 Fay and I recently got back from covering the Mojave Viper training of 2nd Bn, 25th Marines, at 29 Palms, CA. These Marines come from all around the Northeast of the US: New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Massachussetts, Maine, (and even some from the Midwestern state of Ohio).
I produced mainly black and white drawings and ink washes during my outings, due to the nature of the situation and the heat (watercolor is difficult due to the fact that the paint dries rapidly in the heat, and drawing is made more difficult due to the sweat dripping off your hands and face as you sketch!).

We went out to several evolutions of the Mojave Viper training, humping the gear and sweating with the Marines, as they prepared to deploy to Iraq in the near future.
One day I thought I was going to die or go crazy, as we had to sit inside an AAV for four hours, waiting for the combined arms of air support and artillery to do their part in neutralizing the "town" we were going to assault. If you want to lose weight, or get over any clausterphobia you might have, I strongly suggest this type of training! After sweating and almost going insane with boredom, we reached our drop off point and rushed out, getting online and assaulting the objective-- a small village made of cement block buildings.

This is another way I recommend to get fit and thin. Fireteam rushes in full gear, in 106 degree heat, under live fire conditions is an experience all Americans should have.

I learned that it is true that not anybody can be Marine Corps Infantry! Thank God for these kind of young people, who can be this physically and mentally tough. They took it in stride, enjoyed the live-fire training, and honed their skills as Marines (and we combat artists got to hone our skills in highlighting them).


Anonymous said...

Kris -
So glad you posted again. Love to see how you are using the talent given to you.
Stay safe - Ruth

Unknown said...

beautiful drawings! Take care.

Beverly said...

Everyone should read the last paragraph of this post...not just anybody can be Marine Corps Infantry. Thank you for that reminder.

Anonymous said...

When I saw the name, I thought of the area out by Gen. Patton Museum, where the WWII troops trained. I guess it's not a lot different from some of the places in the middle east. Except maybe better.

Thanks for the sketches.