Friday, August 30, 2019

young hands, young minds.

I've noticed in my teaching that it's often difficult for older adults to grasp things that come easy to to the young. It's best not to become discouraged when trying to emulate what I do. I've been making boxes and furniture for over 40 years and before that had studied woodworking in junior high, then pottery in college, and my dad bought me a shop smith for my 14th birthday. Facility with the hands and mind are best developed at an early age in which they are fresh to the world.

Getting an early start in your creative work gives you an advantage. Children learn quickly what it can take adults years to learn, and that they'll never grasp quite so easily or completely as the young. This applies to both hand skills and to what are thought of as "skills of mind," and it's idiocy to think that they are actually different things.

When we listen to a well trained pianist we are not instantly convinced that we can do the same thing. He or she will make it seem easy, but it will indeed not be as easy as it appears. It takes practice, and those who arise to the highest levels of the art, are most often given a very early start.

Woodworking takes place at a slower rate. That you can actually see the hands moving more slowly does not mean that practice was not required. In other words the same rules apply. It's best to get an early start.

I had made a suggestion in the blog and to some experts that the Quipus used by the Incans to record transactions and history were to be read not only by looking at but also by running one's fingers through the patterns of knots and thereby sensing the vibratory patterns they present. Quipus were, after all, described as talking threads. Were earlier scholars taking a purely intellectual approach not listening? Now some experts are exploring this idea based in part on interviews as to how they were read. Unlocking their full mystery will be a challenge for untrained hands.

I have been asked by Fine Woodworking to be an instructor in their 2020 Hands-on Tampa Event. The maple dining table is upside down and ready for the lag screws connecting base and top to be drilled and installed.

Make, fix and create. Assist others in learning likewise.

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