Photo Friday: 18-9-7. “Happy is the man who has found his work.”

Let’s see what we can all come up with on this theme: an individual at work, either looking happy about it or looking intense, concentrating, “in the zone.”

Is it your own photo? Then perhaps tack on some background and some photographic specifications.

Is it somebody else’s photo? Then perhaps let us know what you can about its provenance.

For example, the photo above I took with my shiny red Canon PowerShot on AUTO and two filters. The near filter was an 1860 windowpane with drippy glass; the outer a crummy storm window from the 1970s that had not been washed lately. These careful choices lent a look of authenticity and presence to what was actually happening as the neighbor was digging a trench for us with his backhoe 4 feet from my office window.

If you are feeling timid about dealing with images, fear not! Here is an essay about including images in comments; here is another, on resizing images; here is a third, on aligning them. How did I find these? I nosed around in the right sidebar, found the section called “META”, clicked the link named “Knowledge Base” , and scrolled through it. You can do that, too, because hey, it’s free.

I like the contrast and sharp shadows in the photo above. The orbital sander in his hand is fighting back! The result is the fuzzy look of the right hand and arm, as well as the furious gadget. This photo was meticulously planned to emulate classical Japanese painting, in which almost everything is careful and perfect, with one thing imperfect just to set the perfection off.  Did it work?

The man in the image above is cutting some Burmese jade, while simultaneously putting on a Rembrandt show. It is dark all around, with a delimited lit area in the center. The windows give natural light, while the spotlight is LED, much nicer than the fluorescent shoplights, which fortunately were off that day.

Rembrandt painted this, not I. It is The Night Watch.

What is this guy doing? Preparing a court case? Studying for a big exam? Researching for a newspaper article or a book?  We shall never know, since it has been 80 to 100 years since my grandfather took this portrait, and he left no notes. I am pretty sure this is not Mencken. Wrong city.

Notice the bright oval area in the center, with dark all around it. iPhoto calls this the “Matte” effect. Framing a photo with an oval matte was fairly common in decades past, assuming my family collection is representative. I wonder if the effect is a crude version of the Rembrandt look: a dramatic effect by a master painter turned into a trope for mass participation.

Not all the world is chiaroscuro, thank goodness. Look at the bright airy light in this machine shed and heifer barn! With proper technique and good light, ruminants can undergo abdominal surgery in field conditions with great success. The bucket is converted into a surgery table. A calf with umbilical hernia is sedated and has anesthetic, with hernia repair taking place within a sterile field. She is doing great, growing sleek by leaps and bounds, after her herniorraphy, although she has expressed no gratitude for it.  This was taken with a late-model smartphone.

One more and then it is all your turn. Can you believe this guy? The chainsaw is a good five feet long with twice as big an engine-end as a farmer or homeowner’s chainsaw. At this point in the tree surgery he is pushing that trunk over while holding the saw in one hand.  Sure, the blade is supported some by the cut, but still.

With the slightest encouragement I could root around here and find the photo with the combined mass of the saw and his upper body leaning more than 90 degrees over the edge of the bucket as more, surely more, than the mass of his lower body below the edge of the bucket.

There are more examples, always, but now I’d love to see your photos of working people “in the zone”.  Who has a memorable image of a Navajo or a Mohawk walking a skyscraper beam? How about a Basque sheepherder standing on his horse’s saddle, alone among thousands of sheep in Montana grassland? That latter image I saw some years ago and cannot find again. Help me out here?

7+

Users who have liked this post:

  • avatar
  • avatar
  • avatar
  • avatar
  • avatar
  • avatar
  • avatar

48 thoughts on “Photo Friday: 18-9-7. “Happy is the man who has found his work.””

  1. Good post, jzdro! I am surprised that there was no disclaimer though. “None of the humans in these photos were harmed in anyway.”

    2+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
  2. What lovely photographs!  They convey the great blessing that work can be in our ordinary lives.

    3+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
    • avatar
  3. Great post! Happy farmers growing food; happy construction workers building shelter; happy garment industry making clothes: where would be all be without them?

    Inventors creating labour-saving machines; medical people helping people be well; entrepreneurs creating jobs: how much they add to all our lives!

    I could go on and on, but won’t! 🙂

    3+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
    • avatar
  4. AQhw:
    What lovely photographs!  They convey the great blessing that work can be in our ordinary lives.

    Hi, AQhw,   Well, what does a person need and want most? I’d say it is to be efficacious in this world, hence to exercise your powers and be self-reliant – to know that you can take care of yourself.

    3+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
    • avatar
  5. John Walker:
    Replacing a roof

    I see no harness. They had better stay in the zone.

    Are they taking off old shingles? Is this prep for putting on the same kind of roofing as is on the left – the material that looks like round tile?

    3+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
    • avatar
  6. jzdro:
    I see no harness. They had better stay in the zone.

    Are they taking off old shingles? Is this prep for putting on the same kind of roofing as is on the left – the material that looks like round tile?

    They are installing a new roof on the building.  I don’t know the date of construction of this particular building—most of that part of the village was rebuilt in the 1830s following the fire of 1832.  Almost every building has a tile roof.  The original roofing has been removed, and the workers are removing the underlying material prior to inspecting and repairing the wooden support material below the roof.  As part of such a job, new and better insulation will often be installed below the roof.  If the building is old, you can often recover the cost of a roofing job in five years due to reduced heating costs from better insulation.

    In this case, they may have removed the existing tiles before this phase of the job and plan to re-install the good ones later.

    When a similar job was done on the pump factory at Fourmilab, the existing tiles were removed and any defective tiles discarded.  Even though the building was built in 1974, the tiles were of poor quality and around 40% had to be replaced.  It’s common, when a roof is installed, to store around 20% extra tiles in the attic for eventual replacements, but in my case we needed more than that and had to re-roof 1/4 of the roof with new tile.

    I’ve never seen Swiss roofers use a safety harness.  They put up a scaffolding all around the roof, with a catch area for people who slide off.  You can see that in this photo.

    5+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
    • avatar
    • avatar
    • avatar
  7. Slate roofs are the echter thing in our area. As with the tiles you describe, it is wise to keep extras around and stay friends with a good slate-roofer. Every winter a chunk of ice will crack a slate. A good roofer lays ladders across the roof and walks and crawls around on those. A bad one walks on the slate, and always breaks more.

    3+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
    • avatar
  8. All these photos remind me of one of the most wonderful scenes I’ve seen in a movie, here :

    A few weeks ago, in Bruce Schneier’s site about cryptography, in a comment about Yet Another Security Risk, someone (*not* me, though I sometimes think this way) boldly wrote something like “The more I’m reading about these problems, the more I feel a Luddite” (I’m too lazy to try and search the exact words in Schneier’s site, but I do not betray the idea).

    Now, *Witness* is my idea of Luddite. 😉

    2+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
  9. Blumroch:
    All these photos remind me of one of the most wonderful scenes I’ve seen in a movie, here :

    A few weeks ago, in Bruce Schneier’s site about cryptography, in a comment about Yet Another Security Risk, someone (*not* me, though I sometimes think this way) boldly wrote something like “The more I’m reading about these problems, the more I feel a Luddite” (I’m too lazy to try and search the exact words in Schneier’s site, but I do not betray the idea).

    Now, *Witness* is my idea of Luddite. 😉

    I met Harrison Ford’s brother in Japan. He is a cook. Harrison Ford became a star late in life. His day job was being a carpenter.

    3+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
  10. Jzdro, this person called me to complain about your post title. It doesn’t seem to be inclusive enough. He is not happy.

    2+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
  11. Did search “luddite” using search engine provided by Bruce Schneier (yes, *should* have done it before). When commenting upon “Traffic Analysis of the LTE Mobile Standard” published on Pungenday, Confusion 37, 3184 YOLD, a “PeaceHead” wrote :
    “But yeah, these types of things do bolster the inner Luddite of many of us.
    Computers are the achilles tendons of us all.”

    Oddly enough, there are many neutral or positive references to “Luddite” there. 😉

    1+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
  12. Is it me or do all the pictures in the OP look like the models were all playing in the same gene pool? DNA on arrival!

    1+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
  13. YAFQ, which seems appropriate (author is Sacha Guitry, man of wits and spirit) : “L’homme qui mange n’est pas toujours beau, l’homme qui pleure est parfois laid, l’homme qui aime est souvent grotesque, l’homme qui meurt est d’ordinaire affreux, mais l’homme qui travaille n’est jamais ridicule.” i.e., approximately : “The man who’s eating is not always a pretty sight ; the man who’s crying is sometimes ugly ; the man who is in love is often grotesque ; the man who is dying is ordinarily terrifying ; but the man who is working is never ridiculous.”

    2+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
  14. 10 Cents:
    Jzdro, this person called me to complain about your post title. It doesn’t seem to be inclusive enough. He is not happy.

    Oh, that’s wonderful! Thank you, @10 cents!

    1+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
  15. Mr 10 Cents, rightly, reminded us the title of this post might not be inclusive enough.

    I guess you English-speaking people do not have (yet) the kind of madness called “écriture inclusive” (“inclusive writing” ?) devised by local lgbtiq+ (I may have forgotten a few letters here, not even on purpose) sjwS fighting for equality, parity, against patriarchy, pro-gender-neutrality and the like. I’ll take only the first four words : “Happy is the man” which is normally translated as “Heureux cet homme” (or “Heureux l’homme”). Now, according to third-rate French “scholars” (*you* in the U.S.A. still have a right to laugh here, while we in France no longer have it), most of them women or womyn, this would become (note there are a few groups advocating different usages, I’m not really knowledgeable here) “Heureux.se cet.te homme.femme” or “Heureux.se le.la homme.femme” (I don’t take into account the other variations applying to genre-neutral, genre-fluid and other, let’s say, oddities).

    I suddently wonder how this would be rendered in English.

    For those who *can* read French (I meant it) *and* who understand Swiftian irony, this, here :

    http://guerrecivileetyaourtallege3.hautetfort.com/archive/2017/03/07/carte-blanche-10-5918811.html

    may be very funny a reading, even though I’m the author. Should you want to make a French-speaking Canadian supporter of Trudeau weep, this may be the right tool. 😉

    Mr 10 Cents, may I *respectfully* ask you a question ? Do you really like *almost* all comments… or are you an automata with mustache and yellow hair ? 😉 Mere curiosity, don’t kill the cat (only 8 lives remaining).

    P.S. : Zut, I did not realize I was editing my post and not working on a quoted one. Too bad !

    P.P.S. : Thanks for quoting it in full in following post, thus allowing me to make a 10 Cents-assisted Ctrl-Z. Thank you !

    3+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
    • avatar
    • avatar
  16. Blumroch:
    Mr 10 Cents, rightly, reminded us the title of this post might not be inclusive enough.

    I guess you English-speaking people do not have (yet) the kind of madness called “écriture inclusive” (“inclusive writing” ?) devised by local lgbtiq+ (I may have forgotten a few letters here, not even on purpose) sfwS fighting for equality, parity, against patriarchy, pro-gender-neutrality and the like. I’ll take only the first four words : “Happy is the man” which is normally translated as “Heureux cet homme” (or “Heureux l’homme”). Now, according to third-rate French “scholars” (*you* in the U.S.A. still have a right to laugh here, while we in France no longer have it), most of them women or womyn, this would become (note there are a few groups advocating different usages, I’m not really knowledgeable here) “Heureux.se cet.te homme.femme” or “Heureux.se le.la homme.femme” (I don’t take into account the other variations applying to genre-neutral, genre-fluid and other, let’s say, oddities).

    I suddently wonder how this would be rendered in English.

    For those who *can* read French (I meant it) *and* who understand Swiftian irony, this, here :

    http://guerrecivileetyaourtallege3.hautetfort.com/archive/2017/03/07/carte-blanche-10-5918811.html

    may be very funny a reading, even though I’m the author. Should you want to make a French-speaking Canadian supporter of Trudeau weep, this may be the right tool. 😉

    Canada is preparing for war against US because of this post.That means 10 Mounties have gone to Tim Horton’s to eat their final meal before they cross the border to die in no-person land. “The Redcoats are coming! The Redcoats are coming!”

    2+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
  17. 10 Cents:

    Canada is preparing for war against US because of this post.That means 10 Mounties have gone to Tim Horton’s to eat their final meal before they cross the border to die in no-person land. “The Redcoats are coming! The Redcoats are coming!”

    It’s a good thing Canada is not Grand Fenwick, isn’t it ? 😉

    1+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar
  18. Blumroch:
    Mr 10 Cents, rightly, reminded us the title of this post might not be inclusive enough.

    […]

    Mr 10 Cents, may I *respectfully* ask you a question ? Do you really like *almost* all comments… or are you an automata with mustache and yellow hair ? 😉 Mere curiosity, don’t kill the cat (only 8 lives remaining).

    P.S. : Zut, I did not realize I was editing my post. Too bad !

    You caught me! The likes on your comments are insincere, Blumroch. :-)All the other comments are truly likable.

    Why do I like your comments, Blumroch?
    “Whom the gods would destroy they first make *glad*”

    1+

    Users who have liked this comment:

    • avatar

Leave a Reply