Jay Fisher - World Class Knifemaker

Quality Without Compromise

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"Orion" obverse side view in 440C high chromium stainless steel blade, hand-engraved 304 stainless steel bolsters, Rio Grande Agate gemstone  handle, hand-carved leather sheath inlaid with frog skin
"Orion"

Photography

It's all about light

I picked up my first camera at 13 years old. It was a cheap twin lens reflex, and I took pictures of pets, storms, flowers, family, and friends. I graduated to a 35mm, 120mm, a 4 x 5" view camera, and then digital.

When I started making knives, I realized that in order to keep a record and to ultimately sell my knives, I had to produce good photographs of them. I quickly learned that knives are some of the most difficult objects to photograph. This soon translated to view cameras with perspective control, and ultimately my own darkroom, lab, and processing equipment. The digital revolution changed much of this, but I still manage to work on some photo processes and techniques with light and prints.

Knives and photography go well together for me. During my career, I was lucky enough to be exposed to many processes and jobs that amplified my photographic skills and exposure to new techniques and fields. I've taught photography, advised law enforcement on photographic techniques, photographed other artist's works, and studied strange and unique properties of light. I've even photo-etched test waveguide filters for the largest radio telescope in the world, using photochemical milling processes I've developed. My photos have been published in dozens of magazines and publications. I've accompanied the military on their training missions, and have some of my photography hanging in  the United States Air Force Pararescue School at Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Currently, my knife making career and backlog prevents me from taking on many new photographic jobs and excursions, but I still keep the darkroom stocked and my lenses clean for the occasional field trip. Of course, nearly every knife I make is photographed, and I've managed to create an immense multi-disc compact disc album set of my works available on my site here.

Here are some of the processes I've been lucky enough to work in over the decades:

  • Photo retouching and restoration
  • Reprints
  • Enlargements
  • Black and White Processing
  • Copying
  • Contact Printing
  • Color Manipulation
  • Color Negative Processing and Printing
  • Lithography
  • Digitizing
  • CD ROM Photo Archiving
  • Color Transparency Processing and Printing
  • Darkroom Manipulation
  • Matting and Mounting
  • Archival Printing
  • Handmade Frames
  • Printing on Media: Glass, Ceramic, Fabric
  • Toning Photographs
  • Photo Etching
  • Photochemical Milling
  • Photo Electroforming

"Doll's Eyes" my photography published in the Double Gun Journal James Duval, old friend, actor, mid 1990's photo shoot in New Mexico "The Faceless Cowboy" Muleshoe ranch, New Mexico, mid 1990s "Pontiac Sunset, New Mexico: 2006"
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My Knifemaking History       Handles, Bolsters, Guards  
My Family       Knife Handles: Gemstone  
What I Do And Don't Do       Gemstone Alphabetic List  
CD ROM Archive       Knife Handles: Woods  
Publications, Publicity       Knife Handles: Horn, Bone, Ivory  
Letters and Emails       Knife Handles: Manmade Materials  
Funny Letters and Emails, Pg. 1       Knife Sheaths  
Funny Letters and Emails, Pg. 2       Knife Stands and Cases  
Funny Letters and Emails, Pg. 3 Knife Embellishment
Funny Letters and Emails, Pg. 4       Knife Maker's Marks  
Funny Letters and Emails, Pg. 5       How to Care for Custom Knives  
Funny Letters and Emails, Pg. 6       Knife Making Instruction  
        Larger Monitors and Knife Photos  
  Copyright and Knives
        440C: A Love/Hate Affair  
        ATS-34: Chrome/Moly Tough  
        D2: Wear Resistance King  
        O1: Oil Hardened Blued Beauty  
Knife Blade Testing
        Cities of the Knife  
Heat Treating and
Cryogenic Processing of
Knife Blade Steels
        Knife Shop/Studio, Page 1