Tommy's Run was inspired by the action for which Tommy Ricketts was awarded the Victoria Cross.
The picture shows Tommy after resupplying with ammunition and running back to meet his
Section Commander, Matthew Brazil, standing by with the empty Lewis gun.
Tommy's head is barely above the low rise behind him, with a dark and foreboding sky.
Symbolizing the world very nearly "in over it's head". World War I
has been long. Although history has seen longer wars, none so destructive or costly in
lives. None with the new and horribly destructive weapons now being used.
The end is anticipated, but no one knows when, and it has changed our world ... forever.
Warfare "lost it's innocence" during this war, no longer do warriors "fight an honourable battle".
The hill slopes down in front of Tommy, showing more sky, the end of the war is near.
Tommy runs toward the open sky with his chin tucked into his shoulder, he races for the relative
safety of cover alongside Matthew, and carries with him the ammunition they need for protection.
The battlefield behind Tommy, is desolate. Lonely. Empty. There's nothing there ... something's not right ...
something is very wrong ...
The house on the other side of the hill ... was once a home. A warm fire burned bright. Lights shone
in the windows. Hot meals were cooked on the fire, and served with joy on the kitchen table. Bedtime
stories were read to children, presents opened Christmas morning. There were parties, with singing and
dancing. Now, it's a mere shell of its former self. War has claimed its once warm embrace, ripped it
apart, and blown out the lights. It's useless, not even in position to give Tommy cover. A useless
object in a barren wasteland.
The battlefield, the sky, the entire background, is drawn in grey scale (black and white). Symbolic of
dark dreariness of war and reminiscent of photos from that time. Giving stark contrast to the life present,
Tommy and Matthew. Both are "in living color."
The battlefield mud stains Tommy's uniform, but not his face or hands. A youthful face with no wrinkles or
lines of wisdom earned from age. The taint of war will one day be thrown off with the uniform,
leaving only the unseen, and unknowable, emotional scars.
Everything in front of Tommy is together, overlapping. The line of bullet hits overlap with the bomb crater,
which overlaps the crater Matthew is in, and Tommy's hand is between both craters. Behind Tommy
everything is apart, the house is separated from the bomb crater, and there's nothing else in this lonely
place. But Tommy's leg, kicking back, kicks away the horrors of war as he runs to the light. He will kick
away the destruction of war and hold everything together.
The bullets hit the ground and don't hit Tommy, they don't stop him. There are four bullet hits,
one for each year of the Great War. The last is not fully visible, the struggle is not over yet.