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Lowestoft man meets Prince Charles

PUBLISHED: 09:24 15 July 2009 | UPDATED: 10:48 06 July 2010

THE Prince of Wales visited an exhibition of artwork by former and serving members of the armed forces yesterday.

Among the artists he met was Doug Farthing from Lowestoft, a Sergeant Major in the Territorial Army (TA) who exhibited several of his works from his time in Iraq.

THE Prince of Wales visited an exhibition of artwork by former and serving members of the armed forces yesterday.

Among the artists he met was Doug Farthing from Lowestoft, a Sergeant Major in the Territorial Army (TA) who exhibited several of his works from his time in Iraq.

Prince Charles also awarded prizes at the 75th exhibition of the Armed Forces Art Society (AFAS) at the Mall Galleries, in The Mall, central London.

Referring to his service in the Royal Navy when he kept a journal of writings and sketches, the Prince said: “If I may say, I'm so pleased that there are military personnel observing where they are and what is around them, it is so encouraging that it is still continuing.

“Thank God there are still people who want to express themselves in this way and not just through the camera.”

Referring to the plinth on which he stood to hand out the awards, the Prince even found time to poke fun at some aspects of modern art.

He said: “There is one in Trafalgar Square that occupies people from time to time.

“Maybe I could apply, then I could become the Plinth of Wales.”

The Prince is patron of the AFAS which encourages members of all three branches of the armed forces to become interested in art.

Mr Farthing said his work was influenced by the landscapes of his home county as well as Iraq.

He said: “I've been painting in Suffolk for two years now. Skies in Iraq are quite boring and just very blue and some of the skies you see in these works are Suffolk skies.”

He said he wanted to see a return to war art influenced by the experiences of ordinary soldiers.

He said: “It began in the trenches with soldiers sketching on ration books and things like that and I would like to see it go back to that.”

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