My friend James Westbrook (who classical guitar historians know well from his research and books) is involved in a couple new guitar books, I hear. One of them sounds like a large, Tony Bacon-ish, all purpose, lavishly-illustrated guitar book for the general guitar fan (to be published by Ivy Press).
That’s where I come in. Jimmy drafted a few of his U.S. friends to offer their collections for the cause. Big enough budget that Ivy sent a photographer from London – first stop, National Music Museum in SD, then here, then up the coast to Westbrook’s old friend, Jim Forderer. Sort of a hodgepodge of guitars, from old to new to rare to unusual for the purposes of the narrative (which I’m not in the loop on).
I’m just happy to help out Jimmy, who’s been a friend to the harp guitar cause since I first pestered him. Plus, any time I have an opportunity to get newer, more accurate HG info into a book, I’m all over it!
It’s 2 full days of shooting about 2 dozen instruments. Why? Well, you try to light a solid metal guitar, for starters!
That’s Laurie Evans, ready to shoot the National tricone after 20 minutes of lighting rigmarole. Occasionally, I had to hold even more white baffle-y stuff to nail the shot. The hardest was my custom Kerry Char dobro, with both shiny guitar finish and shinier gold-plated cover plate (fascinating logistics – sort of “billiards with lights and baffles”).
The first day is done. We don’t mind having to hang out with Laurie – he’s great. Though a Londoner, he’s from Edinburgh and is constantly saying things like “brilliant!” – like our hero, David Tennant. (Yes, Jaci and I have become die-hard Dr. Who fans…so, fun to hear Laurie tell of his dad’s best friend, who played “Professor Marius”…and of 5-year old Laurie climbing inside one of the vintage Dalek “suits” when they were made “out of cardboard and spit”).
Kathy Wingert drove up to have her short-scale HG photographed at the request of the editors as well.
Tomorrow, we’ll finish by shooting several harp guitars (nice that they’re including one, let alone a possible bunch). I’ll bug Jimmy to please let me proof any HG-related text…(no excuse to allow erroneous info this time!).
A long day, but I’m taking the opportunity tonight of the extra room and better lighting to plow through several dozen specimen reference photos required by my new insurer (The Anderson Group) – like last year’s new acquisition above.
Gotta get back to work!