Sgt. Jonathan Gavin-Patterson, Black Hawk Crew Chief, OIF 2010-11 Photo courtesy of Jonathan Gavin-Patterson

Sgt. Jonathan Gavin-Patterson, Black Hawk Crew Chief, OIF 2010-11
Photo courtesy of Jonathan Gavin-Patterson

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Nominate a Veteran

Faces Tell Stories is an annual veteran's portrait project. My plan is to select a single veteran every year to complete a life-size portrait bust of. A copy of this bust will then be presented to that individual annually on Veterans Day. The goal is to build a collection of faces and stories honoring the diversity and experiences of the veterans of today. 

I invite you to nominate a veteran for the 2018 portrait bust. Nominations will be accepted November 11, 2017 through December 31, 2017. For a veteran to be eligible, he or she must be able to sit with me for a minimum of three separate, 3 hour sessions at Studio 303, Hatch Street Studios in New Bedford, MA. These sessions will be arranged to be convenient for the veteran. 

Submissions must include:

  • 1 picture from when he/she served
  • 1 picture of him/her as the veteran looks now 
  • Nominated veteran's name, rank and short description of service (1-2 sentences)
  • Contact information of both veteran nominated and nominating individual (phone and email)

Please email nominations to erik@erikdurant.com by 12 midnight December 31, 2017, with the subject line "2018 Veterans Project Nomination."

Selected veteran will be announced January 15, 2018.


Faces Tell Stories is a portrait project focusing on the faces of those who have served. It is an opportunity to look deep into the eyes of an individual and see the story that is there.

A portrait is more than just a likeness. It is a revelation of how that person came to be. Lines and creases are the maps of our individual experiences. Where a person has been and what they have seen is etched onto the topography of the face. It can be read by anyone willing to take the time to look. Many stories, like the men and women who have lived them, can be forgotten and overlooked. This project is my attempt to draw attention to those lines, ponder that topography, and reflect on how it came to be.

The inaugural sculpt of this project is of Sgt. Jonathan Gavin-Patterson. Jon was a Black Hawk Crew Chief during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2010-11. Jon and I met when he was studying art at Bristol Community College. I wanted to sculpt him because, like me, he was a veteran who decided to study art after having served. For me, this was an opportunity to spend time and listen to his story. Oh, and he had a really cool beard. 

Faces Tell Stories — A Veterans Project Reception

Saturday, November 11, 2017 4pm to 6pm
Studio 303, Hatch Street Studios, 88 Hatch Street, New Bedford, MA

Please join us in presenting Sgt. Jonathan Gavin-Patterson with the inaugural sculpt of this ongoing annual project. 

Refreshments will be served.