Fair Woodworking

November 25, 2011

But what will I learn?

There are many types of wood workers as there are many types of people.

Too assume that everyone works to achieve the same goals in woodworking would be shortsighted. Although it would seem that it’s about building stuff, taking wood and working it into something, be it a Bombe Secretary or an Ash Tray, it really is either a destination or the journey kind of thing.

So what kind of woodworker am I?

There’s no question that I care more about the journey than the destination. The part of the journey for me is that I am honing skills that are the building blocks for new skills down the road.

How many times have you seen plastered on the cover of magazines, “(Insert topic here) the easy way!”, or “learn how to (insert activity here) in a weekend!”. Inside the cover you will find articles that show you about a great new jig, or a clever cheat to shortcut the journey and get you to the destination with less muss, less fuss, and almost no bother. And what is wrong with that? Could be nothing, but what if that great new jig or cheat stops you from mastering a simple skill that is mandatory in a more complicated project? All that time you saved by doing it the easy way could have been your ticket to a more skillful you.

Now if you are a destination type, I may sound like a bit of a wing nut. I know of a guy that loved to build bird houses. Not exotic bird houses, just regular garden variety bird houses. He’d developed all the skill he needed to do what he loved to do.

Good for him! We all have our passions.

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