Former Marine and UNC Charlotte student Rob Bates has served on two active duty tours in Afghanistan. This past December he went back, not as a soldier, but as an embedded combat artist, returning to the war-torn country to sketch the drawdown of U.S. forces. Many of his drawings are photo realistic - he draws soldiers' portraits, combat scenes and military posts, sometimes having to make a decision on the spot if it's safe enough to sketch now or photograph a scene to draw later. Some of his work is part of the combat art collection at the National Museum of the Marine Corps. We'll talk about his work as an artist, a Marine and get his "boots on the ground" perspective of the U.S. drawdown in Afghanistan.
Rob Bates - 8 year veteran in the Marine Corps infantry, he's served three overseas tours while on active duty - once to east Asia and twice to Afghanistan. He's a freelance combat artist and UNC Charlotte student.