By Eric Herman
There’s something very special about the people who write for WaterShapes. If you haven’t noticed already, let me point out that this magazine is written by people in the trade – folks who, like you, spend their working lives designing, engineering and installing high-end, custom-crafted pools, spas and waterfeatures.
These are the ones we chose to turn to for the content that fills the magazine you now hold in your hands.
One and all, these professionals have taken time out from their schedules and put pen to page with the hope that sharing their experience and expertise will benefit watershapers coast to coast. And it bears stating that this magazine simply would not exist without these insightful and generous contributors.
These writers have helped us organize WaterShapes as a direct, open forum in which excellence within the trade can be explained, dissected and shared by all who take the time to read the magazine and participate in the forum, however they choose to do so. In other words, this is your magazine, written by and for you and your peers.
Some of you have already commented that a publication “by the trade, for the trade” is basically a new approach, especially for pool-industry readers. As innovative as this approach may seem, it’s important to note that this is nothing new in other trades that have for years enjoyed this sort of straight-talking, on-the-level brand of communication.
In going directly to people who do the work – designers, engineers, builders, specialty contractors and suppliers – we intend to bring our content a giant step closer to the intricate challenges you face in the field every single day. It’s an inescapable fact that to know a subject best, you need to live with it, work at it and, most crucial of all, try and make a living at it. The detail and sense of immediacy gained through this real-world experience cannot be captured nearly as well in the third person.
By writing in the first person about what they do, our writers offer compelling, timely and useful testimony about what really goes on in their various specialties and fields of endeavor. They do so in the hope that reflections and discussions conjured by their words and illustrations will raise the bar for professionals participating in the forum – or at least that their words will provoke thoughtful responses and substantial exploration of issues crucial to the success of watershapers everywhere.
As we worked to develop WaterShapes and spoke with more and more of you, we recognized clearly that a trade-driven forum of the kind we’ve now opened has long been overdue. I’m certainly biased, but I think its advantages are already apparent.
Does our magazine replace other resources available to you? Of course not. We do believe, however, that WaterShapes fills a space that has been treated mainly to silence for far too long. Now that we’re here, the silence has been broken and is being replaced by voices and images gathered directly from the good people of the trade. As you tell each other your stories and share your thoughts and insights, at long last the art and craft of watershaping will be explored, first hand, in the first person.