In GaryG’s view, every successful independent watchmaker has elements of a “house style” that may attract some buyers and put off others, but nonetheless set him or her apart. And, at the highest level, this style goes beyond “branding” to become an expression of the personality and artistic vision of the creator. In the picturesque Swiss town of Thun, Beat Haldimann and his small team distinguish themselves by focusing on technical virtuosity of the highest order as typified by the Haldimann H1 Flying Central Tourbillon.
I am the resident “collector” for Quill & Pad. My enduring love affair with good watchmaking began in my formative years and has accompanied me throughout my adult life. In the fortunate position to be able to acquire luxury timepieces as an adult, I am choosy in terms of quality and meaning and do not follow the mainstream art of collecting as it is primarily understood today.
I have been an active contributor to online horological fora for about a decade as I have also become very interested in learning the art of macro photography and even take lessons with wizard photographer Ming Thein. I joined Quill & Pad as the concept of talking about what interests the contributors (and therefore the readers) rather than the act of being an amplifier for industry press releases appeals to me greatly.
GaryG bought a Vianney Halter Deep Space Tourbillon and hopes that you will find his commentary on a collector’s mindset and the motivations, delights, and possible misgivings interesting and helpful. And of course there are the amazing photographs that only GaryG takes.
One of the inconveniences associated with the current restrictions on gatherings is that GaryG’s local watch gang hasn’t met in person so he hasn’t been able to borrow interesting watches to shoot. However, just prior to the lockdown in California, he did pick up an intriguing piece from a pal: the Anniversary by Vianney Halter. Check it out in every great photographic variation here.
A good friend of GaryG’s owns a cream-dialed Reference 2526, and Gary has often admired it over the years, but hadn’t really understood the role that the 2526 plays in Patek Philippe’s history until talking with him and other watch pals and doing some late-night online research. Read on to learn why he bought this special “Gobbi Milano” edition from 1954 in an exciting spur of a moment.
You can like everything, but you can’t buy – or keep – everything! Inevitably, the choices involved lead at times to regrets; for GaryG, along with many of his pals, the sadness is much more often about pieces they sold too soon or failed to buy rather than pieces they were sorry about buying in the first place. Here’s a story of shoulda, woulda, coulda.
From the torrent of really well done watch photos appearing on Instagram and other media these days, it appears as though lots of watch enthusiasts have been spending at least some of their time in COVID-19-induced shutdowns polishing their macro photography and wrist shooting. And GaryG is among them. Here he shares a few of the thousands of photos he has taken recently using a new-to-him flash style.
Is it possible to make a watch providing a novel and entertaining display of time that is wearable in a variety of settings and will be respected years from now? GaryG believes that he owns such a piece: the Upside Down made by independent watchmaker Ludovic Ballouard.
MrsG, GaryG’s charming wife, is perhaps most enthusiastic about her collection of Southwestern Native American arts and jewelry, but here Gary takes a look at her interesting watches, which include excellent examples from Jaeger-LeCoultre, Blancpain, Alain Silberstein, Audemars Piguet, and more.
Many of you are likely to have come across at least a few heated discussions of “finishing,” a topic that seems to fascinate, and divide, watch enthusiasts. Like many people, GaryG’s starting point for serious watches was with a well-priced brand long known for its expertise in developing movements, justly viewed as offering good value for money – but not necessarily for the refinement of its movement finishing, at least on its less expensive pieces. Read on to discover what he has learned since then.
The time is now, according to GaryG, for large watch brands to seize the opportunity to make a real difference to the health of the mechanical watch industry and the prosperity of their brands. He thinks that 2020 is the year for CEOs to commit to entering their best new pieces in the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG).