I just finished a European piece from around the 4th -5th century and as always needed it photographed but, as always, was in a huge time crunch. Many of my best pieces have went out the door with no photo record because the way I work often has the customer chomping at the bit for shipping and I have never like the idea of shipping a customers brand new blades all around the country to anybody but them. This has always left me in a bind that has me driving all over the country and trying to match my schedule with the photographers regularlyfeatured in knife publications.
So last week I had one of those paradigm shifts in my way of thinking the problem out. I doubt anybody could make a lucrative living from just snapping photos for knifemakers, so I asked myself, why not see if there are any really good product photographers in my area? I looked up some in the Lansing area and found a website that had impressive pictures of glassware and I thought to myself- if this guy can shoot glass, he can shoot blades.
Well I gave him a call and was surprised to find how eager this guy was to work with me, so I made the 35 minute drive to his studio to discuss things. When I arrived I found out why he was so accommodating- the guy really digs swords and had actually attended a lecture I did at MSU with Hank Reinhardt back in 1996!
The actual shoot was a real joy, almost a collaborative effort, although he is definitely the expert. Since the guy guarantees your satisfaction anyhow, allowing me to look into the viewfinder before the final shutter snap was no problem. As we looked though his props and backgrounds we found an old weathered map of the Roman Empire and both had that eureka moment about how well it would go with this sword. To top it off he set up an FTP online so I instantly had my picture one week after the shoot.
Anyhow to make a long story short, I know –too late, I got my sword photographed and only had to travel as far as I normally do to get tools, welding supplies, or a good single malt, and I am helping out another Michigan business (we need all the help we can get here).
Oh, and the sword- O1/L6 (with a hint of O2 for accent), buffalo horn handle, with real bronze fittings.