HOW I GOT THE SHOT: This photograph is what I call a "spontaneously preconceived" picture. Working on a photo essay featuring a variety of shofars – generously loaned to me by their collector, Dr. Ari Greenspan, who is also a terrific dentist! I was looking for ways to vary each shot to give an essay of inanimate objects a little more life. (View the entire essay here: Shofars.) What I had pre-visualized for this shot was a set up that emphasized the texture of the horn. I knew I needed a background that would complement, but not overwhelm, the subject. Spontaneously searching Dr. Greenspan's porch, I found a round wooden stool that initially appealed to me because its shape paralleled the curve of the horn. In the end, I cropped the edges of the stool in favor of a tighter composition that accentuates the action of the lines in the wood grain. A simple and effective choice. May we all be blessed with a year of health, peace, and clear vision for all our choices in the new year. Shana Tova.