The cello was wrapped up a few weeks ago, and has been happily tanning in a friend's light box. Varnish always looks better over wood that has a nice tan instead of freshly worked, and the preferred way to do that is with lots of UV light. Natural sunlight is ideal. In order to get 6 months of tan in the span of a few winter weeks many makers will build light boxes with standard black light bulbs. The effect can be very impressive. Here is a photo of the last violin I tanned with a white violin for comparison.
I took a short break after finishing the cello, and now I'm back to working on the violins that are in progress. This morning was spent having portraits taken of my latest violin, the same one shown in the above picture. Photographing varnish can be very tricky, with shadows and reflections causing all sorts of problems. I met a wonderful photographer while having my portrait taken for the school's new website, and she took some wonderful pictures of the violin. They will be uploaded soon!