That's my son, Jack, holding the sword. I knew I could count on my Jack's help -- especially when I mentioned the words sword and fire. I would have liked a more interesting full body shot of him doing something interesting with the sword. Unfortunately, we had no appropriate looking outfit for Jack to wear (armor, chain mail, etc.), so we just went with just his forearms.
Jack is 19. He recieved this sword as a gift when he was about seven. His best friend Max's mom took a trip to somewhere in South America. She brought back swords for both Jack and Max. I am not sure a) how you are allowed to board a plane with two four foot long swords as carry-on items (even if this was pre-9/11 and the decorative swords have no edge), or b) why Max's mom would ever think it was a good idea to give swords to a couple of knuckle-headed 7 year old boys. Jack's sword has hung in his room since then.
We wrapped a section of 1" x 2" lumber with a rag and, using thin wire, tied it to the back of the sword. It seemed like a reasonable idea to try to shoot this in our backyard rather than have Jack waving around a flaming sword in some more public place. However, when we stepped out the back door I could hear plenty of conversation over the back fence. They seemed to be having a backyard barbecue with friends. I didn't know these neighbors well, but I thought the 6' privacy fence and ring of tall cedars might shield us. However, when we doused the rag in lighter fluid and lit the sword it threw off a lot more light than I expected. After a few moments I noticed that the lively conversation over the fence had abruptly stopped. Then, from over the fence I heard, "Is there a fire over there?" I just shot back in a calm voice, "Oh, everything is fine over here" and we wrapped up the shoot pretty quickly after that.
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