Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Restoring and Preserving History...

When I'm out I'm constantly looking for story ideas, especially while working on other assignments. Some of my favorite photo columns have come from finding them while on other assignments. This one was no exception. I met Michael McCormack while I was covering a gun show. I got a photo of him looking at knives, and when I was getting his name he handed me his card, which said he did architectural stained glass. So, we ended up talking about that for about 10 minutes. He told me about how he was currently restoring a stained glass mural for a rural church in Ira.
So, I called him about three weeks later and set up a time to come out to shoot him working. I was thinking it would be just a story about him restoring stained glass. Well, the first hour I was there, I think I may have shot one photo. Most of the time was spent talking, that was ok, I'd cleared my whole schedule for the morning and afternoon to shoot this. Well, after talking I found out he was also a history buff and one of his other hobbies was collecting antique rifles (I guess that would make sense since I met him at a gun show) and taking part in historical reenactments. Then he told me, he takes the discarded lead from the windows he restores and melts them down to make bullets for his guns!
I think the story would have been cool just telling about him restoring and creating stained glass windows. However, after hearing about him making bullets with the discarded lead, that just made for an added twist to the story that you always hope for. It was also kind of funny, he called me a couple days afterward to thank me and told me that his girlfriend always gave him a hard time about always giving out his cards, he laughed and said now he's got proof of why giving it out all the time works. I'm glad he did. The story I wrote for the paper can be read here: Preserving History


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