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  #1  
Old 04-25-2008, 02:34 AM
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Buddy Thomason Buddy Thomason is offline
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How I will convert the Giraffe bone haters

Wednesday,February 8,1995 I was awakened by movement out in the bush. The weather was overcast with thick fog obscuring the area around me. I was filled with wonder, here in Kenya's Masai Mara.

The disturbance in the bush moved closer. I sat still. Soon a group of 7 giraffe emerged, slowly working the side of a hill thirty yards away, reaching high into each tree, grazing on its tender leaves. I was mezmerized.

What most amazed me was their legs; long and thin but muscular and solid as well. These were the legs of a most unusual and fantastic creature. The giraffe appeared regal and aloof - unafraid as through the fog he momentarily gazed at me from on high.

That my knife is adorned with a giraffe bone handle gives it a place of honor in my collection. Those who denigrate giraffe bone as a handle material may know all about giraffe bone attributes and qualities... but I'm afraid they do not know the GIRAFFE.



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  #2  
Old 04-25-2008, 04:46 PM
TomD TomD is offline
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This picture is astonishingly good, one of the finest that I've seen. The muted background ceramic is perfect in concept and execution. This along with your "yin and yang" is an out of the park home run. Beautiful.


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  #3  
Old 04-25-2008, 06:09 PM
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Thanks, Tom. I should explain the title line "How I will convert the Giraffe bone haters." Over on bladeforums.com there's been some discussion about giraffe bone being a second rate handle material that detracts from a knife's 'investment' value in the secondary knife market... etc. I don't care about any of that really but it did seem odd to me that people could have a discussion about giraffe bone as a handle material and not make a single reference to the magnificently exotic animal from which it comes.

I knew I had this exceptionally handsome knife with nice carved giraffe bone that was due to be re-photographed. I also had a story to go with it since I had observed giraffe in their natural habitat when I spent a month in Africa a few years back. They are truly extraordinary creatures.

So, rather than try and make my point with words I figured I'd share a little piece of my experience and hopefully the image would do the rest of the talking for me. I didn't have a giraffe carving or anything but I did bring that carved stone rhino home with me from the trip. So I decided to substitute another exceptionally magnificent creature for the giraffe to lean the knife up against. Fortunately I was able to get a pretty dramatic result. I posted it on that other forum under a different title. Of course I don't really expect to change any minds, but if I could blow some socks off with a good photo and say something that nobody else was saying... well, that's a good result for the effort in my book!

IMO, the key to this image was use of the black background. In another recent image I posted (SMAUG) Terrill commented that the knife "cried out for a dark background." He was right. I re-shot Smaug with a dark background and got a much more dramatic result. So, this time I remembered. Certainly not all knives demand a black or dark background but is sure seemed to work in both of these cases.

Here's the first image I made 2-3 years ago. I liked it a lot but my gear and skills have advanced since then so the knife needed to be re-shot.



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Old 04-26-2008, 08:17 AM
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Terrill Hoffman Terrill Hoffman is offline
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No doubt about the improvement. I for one have watched it with amazement.
I think the biggest problem with the Giraffe bone is that is was a material found out of desperation. Makers started using it when the ivory, mammoth, and stag became harder to find and more expensive. If it's use had started prior to that point everyone's outlook on it would have been different. I for one have seen several pieces that I would be proud to own. But like any other material, it is the proper application to match the knife that should be taken into account. As to it's value over other materials, I don't worry about it. I value a knife for the "feeling" it transfers to me. Maker and materials are not the reason I collect a knife. (This is different if I know the maker and consider them a friend) I also do not collect for resale value. I do not get a knife thinking about what I can get for it in return in any other than an intrinsic value. I may be a throw back to the stoneage but I believe that certain tools of man have souls. I value those that speak to me.


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Old 04-26-2008, 10:38 PM
MSWallace MSWallace is offline
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Buddy,
Beautiful knife and great shot. Giraffe bone, don't know a friggin thing about it, but that is one beautiful knife, and a great photo.
Mike
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  #6  
Old 04-27-2008, 02:29 PM
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Andrew McLurkin Andrew McLurkin is offline
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Stellar Image Buddy! That aside I think the real issue with any material is rarity. Mastodon ivory and such are rare. When the ban on sambar stag was imposed stag became rarer and suddenly it was also more desirable and expensive. With the rocketing price of oil I'm stocking up on plastic. Soon my plastic handled knives will be flying out of the shop.


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  #7  
Old 04-29-2008, 03:59 PM
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I agree, that if any one G-bone knive could convert anyone your knife would be that one. Its a beautiful peice and a outstanding photo! I have watched the thread on G bone with some amusment over on Blade forums and its some what funny somewhat sad. I beleive the trend away from it is being MADE not born by certain people and thats fine.
Id use it and not apologize for it if I were asked to. I find it funny how stag was looked down at becuase it was cheap at the time and there was alot of really nice stag handled knives out at the time. Same way with brass,Nickle silver, now Mokume ect.
Your photo CLEARLY shows each material a user has it his disposal can be outstanding if done well and with the pros and con of the material taken into account in the design.
I bet if Jerry Fisk ( or any number of high end makers) for example made a single knife with g -bone the whole arguement would sway to how hot G bone is.


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  #8  
Old 04-29-2008, 10:52 PM
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Don Halter Don Halter is offline
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Buddy,
I really like that photo. I think the colors of the rhino work well with the handle of the knife, especially with the dark blue base to bring out some of the blues.The shadows and such make the knife "pop" out at me when I look at it. Everything is so crisp as well. I think this is one of my favorite pics posted here.

As for G-bone, I like it. I'll be in the DR-Congo for all of June then again in July and Sept. I was kind of hoping to get some G-bone while staying over in Johannesburg. The African knife supply store is 50 km from where we'll be laying over for a day or two.


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