In Martial Hues

This collection features photographs of Marines and their environment with one or more dominant colors (and four stark black-and-whites). The photographs were taken while the artist was deployed with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit. Photographs were taken in various locales including the Philippines, Japan, Thailand, and in the Andaman Sea just off the coast from Myanmar.

The collection was first featured as a solo exhibition by the City of Palm Desert—the city’s first solo exhibition and first photographic exhibition—in the summer of 2011 at the Palm Desert Community Gallery located within Palm Desert City Hall. It was featured a second time in the winter of 2011 in a two-person exhibition hosted by the Walter N. Marks Center for the Arts at College of the Desert.

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"In Shades of Green" by Jayel Aheram
“In Shades of Green” by Jayel Aheram.

This first image is what I consider to be the collection’s most iconic photograph. It features my friend Bobby Battles and his piercing green eyes, clad in Marine green and set against the green foliage of the Philippine jungle.

"In Martial Hues" exhibition at Palm Desert City Hall.
“In Martial Hues” exhibition at Palm Desert City Hall.

I called it “In Shades of Green” and it actually served as the main inspiration for the entire collection when I was first deciding the direction of the collection. Even the name of the collection itself was inspired by this photograph’s title. Because of this, we used this photograph in all promotional materials regarding the exhibition. In the first iteration of the exhibition at the Palm Desert City Hall, it was Bobby’s face that you first encounter. From there, you move leftwards moving from piece to piece—25 photographs in all—until exhibition leads you back to the exit. Deborah Schwartz, gallery director for the Palm Desert Community Gallery, did a fantastic job in the presentation of the images.

Below are the rest of the images in the collection.

"Respite from Rain" by Jayel Aheram. This cement alcove serves as a welcome respite from the unceasing rain. February 6, 2008. Okinawa, Japan.
“Respite from Rain” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"The USS Essex in the Andaman Sea" by Jayel Aheram. The USS Essex is much nicer than the Mighty J (USS Juneau). June 3, 2008. The Andaman Sea.
“The USS Essex in the Andaman Sea” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Eyebrows" by Jayel Aheram. A portrait of Angel. June 4, 2008. The Andaman Sea.
“Eyebrows” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Do Something" by Jayel Aheram. It is a look that dares you to do something... anything. Want to try him? May 20, 2008. The Andaman Sea.
“Do Something” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Loading Up" by Jayel Aheram. Attempting to lug our main packs up and down the steep ladderwells of the ship and through its narrow hatches was a nightmare. February 9, 2008. Okinawa, Japan.
“Loading Up” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Complementary Colors" by Jayel Aheram. Red and green. June 12, 2008. Ban Phattha, Chon Buri, Thailand.
“Complementary Colors” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Maseton in Shades of Green" by Jayel Aheram. A portrait of Maseton. June 4, 2008. The Andaman Sea.
“Maseton in Shades of Green” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"The Directive" by Jayel Aheram. Every marine that passes through the gate is reminded by this directive from the Camp Commander. June 23, 2008. Okinawa, Japan.
“The Directive” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Yellow and Suede" by Jayel Aheram. I think these boots are photogenic.
“Yellow and Suede” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"By the Beach" by Jayel Aheram
“By the Beach” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Benjamin in the Philippines I" by Jayel Aheram.
“Benjamin in the Philippines I” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Steam and Sky" by Jayel Aheram.
“Steam and Sky” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Range Juneau" by Jayel Aheram.
“Range Juneau” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"He Roars!" by Jayel Aheram .
“He Roars!” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"The Candles Lit" by Jayel Aheram.
“The Candles Lit” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Beads of Sweat" by Jayel Aheram.
“Beads of Sweat” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Louder! Louder!" by Jayel Aheram.
“Louder! Louder!” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"A Little Bit of Motivating Training" by Jayel Aheram.
“A Little Bit of Motivating Training” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Shave Inspection" by Jayel Aheram.
“Shave Inspection” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"The Last Stick" by Jayel Aheram.
“The Last Stick” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Hookin' and Jabbin' with the 31st MEU" by Jayel Aheram.
“Hookin’ and Jabbin’ with the 31st MEU” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Between the Quadcons and a Hard Place" by Jayel Aheram.
“Between the Quadcons and a Hard Place” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Firing the 105 MM" by Jayel Aheram.
“Firing the 105 MM” by Jayel Aheram.

 

"Suede Boots" by Jayel Aheram.
“Suede Boots” by Jayel Aheram.

The personal website of Jayel Aheram