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Utsushi and Yugen - Ford Hallam Videos

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#1 Ford Hallam

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Posted 13 December 2010 - 09:42 PM

Utsushi - the search for Katsuhira's tiger

Some of you have already seen this short documentary film but I've just uploaded a High Definition version with Japanese subtitles onto YouTube.

You'll find details about the film maker and links to alternative text translations of the audio in the description below the film screen.

You'll find part one here.
and part 2 here.

You'll see the default quality setting on the play bar is usually 360p (on the right just below the screen). The film can be viewed in higher quality (up to 1080 High Definition ) by selecting a higher resolution setting. At the higher settings you can watch it in an expanded view to fill the screen.

Please feel free to download the files for your own use. You'll need to use RealPlayer software to do this. It's available for free here.

If you're interested you can read more about the project the film follows and how it came about here, on my blogsite.

I hope you enjoy it.

best regards,

Ford Hallam


#2 Jean



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Posted 13 December 2010 - 10:25 PM

:clap: :clap: :clap:
Jean L.
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#3 loui


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Posted 13 December 2010 - 10:40 PM


#4 watsonmil


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Posted 13 December 2010 - 11:01 PM

Dear Ford,
Very informative, beautifully executed, ... and simply a privilage to watch. I'm presently working on duplicating a Serpentine for a Matchlock, .... and although technically not nearly so demanding difficult enough for an amateur like myself. The one major difficulty is for people ( customers ) to realize the time and labour involved, .... and it is therefore difficult to make any profit by taking on these commissions. It is in my case at least the satisfaction I derive by repairing these old Tanegashima and seeing the delight when the others excepting the owner cannot find the replacement part. Would I aspire to the heighths you have taken your craft/profession. Thank you for this wonderful glimpse of your Life and Art.
... Ron Watson
PS> My wife was as enthralled as I.

#5 drdata


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Posted 13 December 2010 - 11:20 PM

Ford, thanks for posting. Truly inspirational.

Best regards
Another nube doing the Nihonto thing..

Harry R.

#6 Stephen



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Posted 13 December 2010 - 11:22 PM

close to tears at your craftsman ship.
Make that Mastercraftsman. :bowdown: :bowdown:
:clap: :clap:
:beer: :beer:

                    Stephen C.

            USMC DEC 63 APR 73

     I can see for miles and miles from this vantage point!


#7 Grey Doffin

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Posted 13 December 2010 - 11:38 PM

Hi Ford,
Thank you.
May I ask; what happened to the original dai? How did they get separated?

#8 Martin


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Posted 13 December 2010 - 11:49 PM

Hi Ford,

I have just seen this very skilled and tastefully made film together with my wife and we were simply speechless.
One can really see the passion you put into your work and it simply is a joy watching the birth of this masterpiece.
Thanks so much for sharing this.


#9 Curgan


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Posted 14 December 2010 - 12:12 AM

I had the burden to wait for a year or so for this, being intrigued by mr Hallam. I had beed expecting the joy of seeing this with anticipation.
But I was wrong...

It was even better!!!

:clap: :clap: :thanks: :clap: :clap:
John C.

Her high mountains eagle-shaped, rows of vines at the volcanos and the houses more white near the great blue's edge...

Odysseas Elytis - Axion Esti

#10 Amon


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Posted 14 December 2010 - 12:32 AM

Thank you so much Ford for sharing this!
One word, Amazing

Kind regards,
John Amon

#11 tony edmunds

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Posted 14 December 2010 - 12:40 AM

Genius is an oft abused superlative but in this case I think it inadequate.


Kindest Regards

#12 ububob


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Posted 14 December 2010 - 01:26 AM

Brilliantly conceived and flawlessly executed. The film spoke to me on intellectual and spiritual levels.
Thank you. :thanks: :clap: :clap: :clap:
Bob H.
"ἓν οἶδα ὅτι οὐδὲν οἶδα" Socrates

#13 Lee Bray

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Posted 14 December 2010 - 02:51 AM

A great film. I've watched it a few times on DVD now and still gobsmacked every time I watch it.

#14 Wickstrom


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Posted 14 December 2010 - 03:25 AM

I must say Mr. Hallam, the magnitude of craft you put into this piece is astounding! Especially cutting all the stripes of the tiger individually, wow. :clap:
Andrew Wickstrom

""Do not sleep under a roof. Carry no money or food. Go alone to places frightening to the common brand of men. Become a criminal of purpose. Be put in jail, and extricate yourself by your own wisdom." - Miyamoto Musashi

#15 Ford Hallam

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Posted 14 December 2010 - 10:07 AM

Thank you everyone for the fantastic response.

I'm a bit rushed right now so will reply in more detail to your very kind comments as soon as possible.

Ironically, as soon as the 2 separate files were uploaded my account was upgraded to allow me to load much larger files. This means we can provide the film as one single file. To do this we need to delete the first 2 though. The swap is underway and should be completed within the next 4 hours. Apologies for the inconvenience.

I'll post an announcement and the new link as soon as it's ready.

thanks again,




#16 IanB


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Posted 14 December 2010 - 06:45 PM

Ford, I think I have already fallen at your feet, but in my opinion you cannot be lauded sufficiently (is lauding the same as being rubbed over with goose grease or is that larding?). :badgrin: :clap: :clap: :clap:

Grey, Whilst I have not really been involved, I do know a little of the background. The daisho pair was originally illustrated in the catalogue for the exhibition in Los Angeles in the late 1960's. Somewhere along the line from then until now, the dai became separated. The catalogue lists the contributors but not what the contributed. I put out a couple of feelers on Bob's behalf and learned that there were some original contributors still extant but couldn't learn who had loaned the tigers. So for the moment, the whereabouts of the dai is a mystery nbut no doubt it still exists.
Ian Bottomley

#17 Ford Hallam

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Posted 15 December 2010 - 11:47 AM

Youtube is driving me crazy!!!

We uploaded the film in 2 parts to meet Youtube's requirements on file size. No sooner is it all live and we're informed that my account has been upgraded to allow for the full file to be loaded as a single file.

This can only be done after the original separate files are deleted....which we dutifully do. Now the account has reverted to it's previous capability and we're told the new, single film is too long!ok...deep breath and I must go to Cape Town to collect the new files and start the upload from the start again. Normal service will hopefully be resumed sometime this evening. Central African time.


#18 Lorenzo


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Posted 15 December 2010 - 11:49 AM

Take it easy Ford :thanks:
Lorenzo Amati
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#19 Ford Hallam

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Posted 16 December 2010 - 10:43 AM

Apologies to all for the false start....talk about going off half cocked :(

Anyway, thanks to te wonders of South African internet technology ( sarcasm enters the room ;) )
The film is now back on-line.

We've had to revert to the original 2 part format.

You'll find part one here.
and part 2 here.

Thanks very much to everyone for your very kind compliments. It really is great to hear that all the "exposing" of what I do is appreciated. It helps to reassure me I'm not too much like one of those annoying kids who are constantly shouting "look at me!" :glee:


#20 Eric H

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Posted 16 December 2010 - 01:59 PM

Hi Ford,
Your "oeuvre d'art" is in any aspect outstanding and perceptively adapted to the Katsuhira Tsuba... and bravo to the film adaptation :bowdown:

#21 raaay


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Posted 16 December 2010 - 07:19 PM

Hi Ford

Oustanding work :clap: :clap:

love the video clips. more please.

Best Regards

Ray :)

#22 gudis


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Posted 16 December 2010 - 09:47 PM

WOW, amazing... That is true art in its best form....
//Niclas Gudmundsson

#23 Brian



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Posted 16 December 2010 - 10:09 PM

Bunch of collectors here got together at my house today to eat, drink, be merry and watch the DVD.
I'm guessing the stunned silence said a lot about your work Ford. :shock:
The one thing that went through my head was : "Wow! You are insane Ford!"
I don't know how someone develops the talent, patience and stamina to tackle something like that, but I am not exaggerating when I say that the DVD is astonishing and amazing. It is brilliantly presented and expertly rendered. I thought I had an idea what I would be watching, but the end result was so far superior to anything I had imagined that I cannot express it well enough. This changes a lot of what I had imagined about the making of tsuba..and explains even more. I think this DVD is destined for TV and greater things, as is your career.
Hard to really express my amazement. Those that watch it will understand it. Those that haven't seen it yet..make a plan.


- Admin -

#24 Gabriel L

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 05:49 AM

Ford, this was fantastic, thanks for sharing. I am using this to illustrate the kind of labor and attention to detail these fields demand (as well as the delight and beauty the items themselves hold for us), for friends of mine who are unacquainted with Japanese metalwork. I am also impressed at the production quality of the video; the cinematography and editing were excellent.

Great work!

#25 Ford Hallam

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 10:04 AM

Thanks everyone for the very generous compliments and comments of appreciation. I'm really pleased we've been able to add something of value to the understanding of how this art form is/was created. :)

I would like to add that this whole project, the commission for the tsuba and the filming ( 24 hours of footage) was only made possible (and at great expense) thanks to the support and vision of Bob Morrison.

Brad Schaffer, the film maker, was also something of a lucky break for me. We rapidly developed a very good rapport and working relationship that allowed me to completely trust his judgement on how we presented the project and most importantly, allowed me to feel relatively relaxed in front of the camera. I'll be sure to pass on your compliments on the filming.

Going on the reception this film has received we may have a few more in the pipeline. You'll be first to know.

Ian B. You're very kind with your praise....even if it might result in me looking like I'm about to swim the Channel :roll:

thanks again everyone.




#26 bjmoose


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Posted 17 December 2010 - 05:09 PM


Just wanted to add my congradulations (and adulations) on the masterful work done on this project (both the tsuba and film). Having done a few videos in my past (shooting, directing, editing), I must say the production qualities on this are first rate.

I'm always fascinated by the creative process involved in works of art - and love to see the transitions from raw materials to the finished piece. I have a copy of Yoshindo Yoshihara's "The Secret World of the Japanese Swordsmith", and now I can add your film as another cornerstone to Nihonto creation.

Thanks so much for sharing this with us.

- ian
Ian J.

#27 Curran



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Posted 17 December 2010 - 10:34 PM

This is too impossibly good of a film. Mind boggling project. Having only seen an image of the original, I had not realized the striped were inlaid.

Brian, okay to cross link it in the Tosogu section? (Done - Admin)
I almost missed it in this section.

Michin nom Curran

#28 Ford Hallam

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Posted 18 December 2010 - 09:33 AM

Ian, Curran

Thank you for your kind words. I'm glad you enjoyed it and that it provided a little glimpse into the world of kinko tsuba.




#29 Gilles


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Posted 19 December 2010 - 02:09 PM

Dear Ford,

A really impressive work which makes me speechless. I can use the french term "oeuvre d'art". :clap:
Gilles A

#30 Pete Klein

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Posted 19 December 2010 - 04:58 PM

I learned so very much today. Thank you!

“It's no wonder that truth is stranger than fiction. Fiction has to make sense.”
— Mark Twain

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