Ed Drew is an artist who’s studying at the San Francisco Art Institute, pursuing a BFA in sculpture with a minor in photography. He’s also a defensive heavy weapons and tactics specialist for the California Air National Guard.
When Drew was deployed to Helmand Province, Afghanistan this past April as a helicopter aerial gunner, he decided to bring his passion for photography with him. What resulted were the first tintype photos to be created in a combat zone since the Civil War.
The Brooklyn-born photographer tells us that his motivation for the project was to stay sharp and not get rusty while he was away from home. “I was really interested in making art while I was in Afghanistan so I wouldn’t lose my momentum in my absence from art school,” he says.
What happened to him was so brutal, seeing success pass him by — twice. But he didn’t let that misfortune define him. Of all the guys I knew through my years in rock, a precious few made it huge. Good for them. Most never came close. Some never managed to get past the failure of the dream, but it seems pretty clear that [Jason] Everman did.
Big time rock star fame eluded him two times — once with Nirvana and once with Soundgarden, but it seems like maybe it was a bad fit in the first place. — heidi