Many years ago I began to take an interest in swords and swordsmanship. In these younger years I enjoyed the myths, legends and tales that surrounded them but as time passed I started to learn far more than I expected. My interest in the sports and films surrounding them began to wain and instead I began to see their evolution, place in history and the wider parallels to human nature as far more interesting.
Each style of blade was like a tool reflecting the point in history, geography, skill with metallurgy and the social/psycological effects of the age. The understanding of tools is a subtle and revealing art, every curve & pattern reflects so much. From the skill and understanding of the maker to the size, ability and location of the user. It is easy to loose sight of the simple things, but it is these that educate and inform us, opening the mind to such perceptions can reveal truths way beyond that of an object.
We seem to live in an age where brands and labels hold sway. The signature and reputation of the craftsman has given way to the blanket corporate label with its promises and assumptions of status and taste. The skill of the users is measured in sports and celebrity. Perhaps by my drive to seek understanding I have consigned myself to the sidelines of mainstream society, but it is through understanding that I find my rewards.