Saturday, March 18, 2017

The war-weary British Tommy



This is an interpretation, of sorts, of the sculpture at Seaham, of a British Tommy, by local artist Ray Lonsdale. It sits on the seafront at Seaham in Country Durham to mark the centenary of the start of the Great War. It was erected in 2014 and was, I believe, meant to be a temporary installation. However, it was still there in 2016 when I took some photos of it. As it weighs 1.2 tonnes and is made of metal I can't see it ever being moved!

Its meant to represent the weariness of war, or even post-traumatic stress (combat stress) and is inspired by the story of a local man who served in the Great War. 

On the day I tool my photos it was a very windy and cloudy day, somewhat bleak. I was quite moved by the sculpture on that windswept seafront and it brought back memories of my two grandfathers, who both fought in and were wounded, in the Great War. Both had traumatic experiences of the war, though they spoke little of it, it nevertheless had left visible and mental scars on them which even I as a young child could perceive.

The photo is a composite of two images taken on the same day in the same general location. I combined them by removing the original sky and replacing it with another one taken just up the coast. I then edited them in Photoshop before finishing things off in Luminar. If you would like to know more about combat stress and support the work of an excellent charity supporting those who have served and suffer from combat stress, why not check out http://combatstress.org.uk.

Note: The link to Macphun, creators of Luminar and other great software, is an affiliate link. By clicking on it, you will be helping me in a small way to cover the costs of this blog.

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