Well now, what have we here? With the summer gone and fall approaching, I finally find myself with the capabilities and materials to make the post that’s been brewing for a long time now. I realize I’ve neglected my update schedule and planned features, but hopefully all that will begin picking up again. I have so much to write about and show in this post, so hold on tight as I zip back and forth all over the new stuff.

First and foremost is the addition of the Colorado gallery, containing the shots I took over a week in July. It is not yet complete (that should come within just a few days), but the first two sub-galleries documenting the sights around Durango and the Durango Mountain Resort (formerly Purgatory) as well as the scenic drive to Silverton are up and ready to check out. Because the scope of the place is so grand I’ll shut up for a bit and just show some examples of what’s in the gallery (linked, as always, to their pages).

Now that that’s out of our system, let’s move on to other things!

Something you may not know about me is that I love making things. That is where my interest in art stems from, I think, and recently I’ve begun experimenting in the more material sense, namely, leatherworking. It must sound a bit odd at first, but I’ve had a growing curiosity for a while and finally decided to find myself some tools and materials and give it a try. Thankfully I was not disappointed, and I have a few examples of my handicraft to show you.

The first projects I attempted were simple strand bracelets either single- or double-wrapped around the wrist, which I made for my brother and sister (and of course myself). I’ve admired this style since I saw it done by Nick Hollows (of Hollows Leather – http://www.hollowsleather.com/), and I figured it was simple enough for a first try. It turned out to be more complicated than I anticipated, but after several “drafts” I came up with what I’m wearing now –

It’s comfortable, simple, and it looks good too.

For my second project I went more advanced and decided to make a watchband, since the ones I had been getting were of disappointing quality and lacked some features I would have liked to have. I styled mine after the band it was to replace, and after a couple days of work I counted it finished. The leather is all hand-dyed and sewn, is water-resistant, and very sturdy.

As you can see, the back is removable via two button-studs so that the battery can be changed easily, and also to give an extra wearing option. Luckily it fit my watch on the first try (measure twice and cut once definitely applies here), and I like it so much I’m working on an improved mark-II model right now.

I’ve also made a hatband for myself and a sheath for a fixed-blade knife, each project building on the previous to help me realize new ways to put things together better. The work is quite enjoyable, and I’ve been researching outlets for a small market-type setup once I can build up a greater stock and more experience. I don’t know if I’d ever be able to couple this site to an online store, but rest assured I’ll find some way to start getting this stuff out there.

Now, another break in the topic brings us to a present I received on my recent birthday – a Rolleiflex Automat Type II TLR camera. It is a beautiful thing to hold and use, and very soon I will be getting out to make some (hopefully) equally nice pictures with it. It is a medium-format camera, meaning the negative size is 6×6 cm or about 2 1/4 inches, which is of course more than 35mm but less than 4×5. The roll film is still readily available in many varieties (I went with Fuji Velvia for its first run), and I’ll be working to find a way to get the shots from it as well as my Graflex on the site. I figured you’d like to see it (I can’t blame you), since it is as much art as machine, something modern cameras are sorely lacking.

I am very excited to begin using it, so stay tuned for the results.

That brings us to the end of what I had to say today, thank you to my dear readers for toughing out my summer hiatus. As I mentioned, posting should become more regular and content-filled now, so keep an eye on the front page. I’ll make posts for when the remaining Colorado galleries are finished, as well as to showcase that amazing landscape. I also plan to get out this weekend, though I’m not sure where to yet, so that will be posted as well. Stick around for more!


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