Kicking It Off!

(Update: Header image has changed to Reedy River Falls since writing this post. Was this, as talked about below.)

Let’s not talk about why it’s taken me (a tech-nerd extraordinaire) so long to get around to writing a blog. It’s a long and involved tale that would require the patience of Job to endure, so we’ll leave it be. Instead, let’s get about the business of enjoying this slice of life we’ve been given the opportunity to sample.

Let me start by sharing a little about the image I’ve chosen to use in the header for this blog. It was shot on assignment for Workbench Magazine some years ago, as one of a series on antique tools that I was privileged to do for them. I’d been doing some light woodworking as a hobby at the time. Finding myself in need of some fresh portfolio images, I designed several with tools and materials that I had on hand. Within a couple of weeks, I found myself showing them to the editor there at Workbench, Bob Hoffman. It just so happened that he’d been working on a feature plan for antique tools. It was to run in every issue opposite the inside back cover as a single-page, full-bleed, “hero” shot. Type would be fit into negative space designed into the photo. I was contracted to inaugurate it.

Have you ever been too successful? After about four issues, we received a back handed compliment that I cherish to this day. It seemed that the folks who were laying out the big bucks for that inside back cover, were none too happy at finding themselves in visual competition for the hearts and minds of the readers. Looking back, I can see their point, but at the time it brought a smile to my face. Still can at times!

Back to the image. It’s of a brace from the late 1700’s and it’s laying on the arm of a Windsor chair that’s in production. In the upper right corner, you can see a portion of a spoon bit that would have been used with the brace to drill the holes for the spindles in the seat, arms and back rails. The photo is severely cropped to fit the blog header, as it ran as previously described, as a full page.

It was shot with a 4 X 5 Horseman studio camera, a Schneider 150mm G-Claron lens, on Ektachrome 100 film. (For those who don’t know, that’s like a super large slide. Same film, just larger.) It was lit with Broncolor lighting (lighting done right – those Swiss know their business). Warming gels were used judiciously on the lamp heads to keep the brass and wood from appearing washed out. Finally, everything was tacky waxed into place and dust sprayed with an airbrush connected to an 80 lb. nitrogen tank. Final Polaroid check and then film was shot. Then, I waited in anxiety until I saw the film. Hallelujah, it was art!!!

Thanks for reading.

Until next time – Johnny


~ by Johnny on September 18, 2008.

One Response to “Kicking It Off!”

  1. well well – a blog you say? More about that later! IE seems to be rendering this site better than Opera, what a disapointment – i’ve grown to dislike IE and usually only use Opera – IE is still on these machines for the wife – you’ve got to keep the girls happy – as if!!!

    Hi Thomas – yeah, I thought it was time that I got with it and joined the modern age. Trouble is, some of these blogs are written in a different English. Makes me feel like King James. Street smart, I am not.

    Not being an MS geek, I didn’t realize that Opera existed in that realm. It’s a really sweet interface, but I too am bummed by the way it renders graphics differently. Maybe someone will create a standard way of doing things someday. Oh yeah, that’s not this life. Is it?

    Thanks for commenting, you were numero uno. I’ll buy you a cup of coffee next time we’re together. Ooops… should have written Mountain Dew 😉


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