FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 8, 2010
Contact: Kathleen Thamm
Phone: (509) 688-3757
VETS Project blogsite: HYPERLINK "http://johnthammstudios.blogspot.com" http://johnthammstudios.blogspot.com
Local veterans featured in newly released book “Vets: 50 Portraits of Veterans and Their Stories” gather for public reception
Spokane, WA– Join the veterans featured in the book and portrait project: “Vets: 50 Portraits of Veterans and Their Stories”, for a reception Friday, July 16, 2010, Noon.-4 p.m. at Centerplace 2426 N. Discovery Place in Spokane Valley.
Area veterans who served their country from World War II to Iraq will gather at Centerplace in Spokane Valley to celebrate the release of the book by area artist John Thamm: “VETS: 50 Portraits of Veterans and their Stories.” This project began two years ago when Thamm wanted to volunteer at the VA Medical Center. The VA gave him permission to set up an easel in the waiting room and he began painting portraits of the veterans who came there for their medical appointments. As each man asked to be painted, John would listen to their story and soon decided that he should publish a book that included the veteran’s portrait and their story.
Most of the veterans featured in the book live in Spokane and Stevens Counties, Northern Idaho, and as far away as Umatilla, Oregon. Vernon Baker from St Maries, Idaho, recipient of the US Army Medal of Honor and author of the book: “Lasting Valor” is one of the featured veterans. Many of the veterans will be signing the books and sharing their stories.
Paul Quinnett-clinical psychologist in Cheney Washington says in the forward of the book: “It was only after slowly pouring through this remarkable collection of portraits and personal stories in “Vets” that I realized why there is this connection, this brotherhood, this sense of automatic bonding with other veterans that makes being a veteran something special…I stand in awe of the things that these veterans have seen and done, lived through, endured, survived and yes, even conquered.”
John Thamm lives in Spokane Washington and teaches portrait workshops in the United States and Germany. A graduate of the University of Idaho with a masters of fine art degree he studied portraiture at the Art Students League in New York City. Thamm has been a courtroom sketch artist for television and newspaper media including KREM, KXLY, the Spokesman-Review, CNN, ABC and the Associated Press. The project “Vets” is featured on KSPS in Northwest Profiles.