It's not often that one takes an item and really studies it, observing every curve, surface, and texture until they could be accurately drawn from memory. When I was young, I would memorize a drawing, basically a complex symbol, and reproduce it to impress my friends. I learned one angle, one small view of many animals, vehicles, and more. It didn't really improve my understanding of their three dimensional forms, or their nature. I improved my ability to draw what I see, and I improved my visual and kinesthetic memory. Now, I am studying three dimensional objects, not just two dimensional images. Also, I am studying them with the intention to understand how they were designed and manufactured, not just to be able to impress people with accurate representations. I want to know how things fit together and how they work, not just what they look like. Too many designers focus just on the surface and styling of objects without paying attention to the underlying idea. That has parallels in every field, I'd reckon. I've noticed that in comics, advertisements, and movies; heck, just about any media is prone to creative deficits.
In my modeling of this knife, I had to figure out how every grinding of a surface was applied, and in which order, because that was basically how I was able to construct my digital version. Instead of grinding, I just created a surface and clipped away a portion of the solid or split two regions. Here you can see all the surfaces I used to do this. One cut would create the geometry necessary to create and apply the next, and so on down the line until it was complete. I can tell that the creation of this knife was very labor intensive compared to your typical mass-produced kitchen knife. A premium knife uses better materials and has much better craftsmanship. In studying this object so intensely, I gained a greater appreciation for the work of those who created it. That's not to say this is exactly how I'd design a knife. Oh, no. I'm a much bigger fan of Leatherman tools than I am of fancy kitchen knives. I'd love to design a folding knife/multi-tool sometime. I'd get a chance to use the FEA add-in in SolidWorks to test parts to make sure they bend or spring in the right ways. That sounds like a good portfolio project.