A year in the life...

Armored Personnel Carriers near the DMZ
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 - Armored Personnel Carriers near the DMZ - Techno-Impressionist Museum - Techno-Impressionism - art - beautiful - photo photography picture - by Tony Karp

These are Armored Personnel Carriers (M113) on maneuvers near the DMZ in Korea. This was over 40 years ago, when we had troops stationed in this area. One of my jobs was to drive an M113 as part of our medical platoon. My M113 had a big red cross on the side, hopefully warning the bad guys that we were medics and please don't fire at us. We thought the red cross would look great in an enemy's gunsight.

My name was painted on the front of the vehicle in small, neat letters, as was the case for all vehicles where we were stationed. It saved a lot of time in figuring who to blame when it broke down. And break down they did. They weren't the most reliable of vehicles, and mine broke down several times in the field and had to be towed.

The interesting thing is that these vehicles, hopefully in a more reliable form, were used in Vietnam and are currently in use in Iraq. It's one of the few land vehicles from the Vietnam era still in active service. Another armored vehicle is the M88 Hercules Full-Tracked Recovery Vehicle, which looks like a giant tank, but with no cannon. One of these was stationed directly across from our aid station. It's this monster that towed my M113 when it broke down. And it's the vehicle (not a tank) that they used in the photo-op when they tore down the statue of Saddam in Baghdad.

As for the picture, it's an example of what I call "Darwinian compositing." The picture was on film and I scanned it into the computer three separate times. Each scan was for a different section of the picture -- once for the foreground with the M113s, once for the hills in the background, and once for the sky, in a setting that exaggerated the menace of the clouds.

The "Darwinian" part comes when I combine the three different scans into a single image. Each image is on a separate layer. Masks are used to select just the section that is the best for each area of the final picture. Only the strong survive.


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