Take Stock Of Where You Are
Good morning. This is the start of a new project, using this blog to establish an ongoing learning resource for spoon carvers, an apprenticeship of sorts. My plan is to do a post every day that I am working on my book, which is generally five days a week. They will be short, just a few minutes to read, and will be designed to give you something to take to your spoon carving practice to make it better. If this sounds like something you would enjoy getting in your email each day, there is a subscribe button on the homepage of this website. If you ever have questions or thoughts you'd like to share, please feel free to send me an email or a DM through Instagram, but if you're willing to make the conversation public, that would allow it to help other people and the best place to do it would simply be to make it as a comment on one of my most recent posts on Instagram, where I will almost certainly see it in a timely manner. Let us begin.
The place I want to start this is the place we always start anything, which is to assess our situation. This will be different for each of us. For some, you will have been carving for years, for some you will be just starting or just thinking about starting. Some of you are looking to buy tools and wondering what you should get and what you can afford. Some of you have tools already and are wondering if they are holding you back. Or know that they are holding you back, or know that a lack of skill or understanding around sharpening or some other factor is holding you back.
It will be different for each of us. But the best thing to do is to take stock of where you are and to ask yourself what you want, what you need to make that happen, and what time and money you are willing to spend to get there. The answers to these questions will show you what path you should take. Maybe it's buying the cheapest thing possible to dip your toe. Maybe it's upgrading some tool that you know is holding you back. Maybe it's putting more effort into getting better quality wood. Maybe it's investing more time into teaching yourself how to properly sharpen the tools you have. Maybe it's committing more time to actually practicing carving.
Usually, we know what we need to do in any moment, if we take the time to do this. But often we are stuck because we have hit a roadblock and stalled out. So this is me, telling you to start up your engines again, figure out the path through or around your particular obstacle, and get moving.
I'll see you tomorrow.
10/21/2020 05:45:00 am
I’ve found getting past roadblocks is as simple as finding a partner in crime. Join a carving club or invite carving friends to your shop. The company and shared ideas usually ramp up the energy.
10/21/2020 06:34:31 am
A great start Emmet and I look forward to this series. As a former tech project manager who was called on many times to enter into an existing project that was floundering this was always my mantra "Start where you are at". Sounds simple but most don't do it. They dive right into the crisis at hand (or lack of progress spoon carving) without the assessment phase. In order to Start Where You are At you need to know where the heck you are. Equally important is a simple statement of where you want to go, what is the desired "end" result? I have dabbled with spoon carving, have all the right tools, but have not made the forward progress i want. I look forward to your daily tips and tricks in this blog series to jump start my spoon carving. My immediate goal is to have at least 10 "cookers", simple and plane, ready for Christmas gifts in 2 months. Let's start! - Frank
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My blog has evolved into a series of short essays on the nature of entrepreneurship, craftsmanship, and their overlap. If either of these topics is something you think about, you will probably like this.