Woodworking for me really settled in as an activity I did out of necessity to solve problems. I need a step stool….find a design, buy some lumber, build it, finish it, use it. There was certainly not a lot of artistic influence, nor was there much in the way of regularity to the effort. It was purely a utilitarian exercise.
When I decided to get more serious about woodworking and take the time to build something nice that would last a (hopefully) long time, I started down the path of building the canoe I have been documenting in the blog.
At the time, I did not know a lot of people who were into woodworking. One friend of mine, Adam, was taking an introductory course at a vocational school so I invited him along to work on the canoe.
This was several years ago and we have managed to keep the woodworking activities going since then. We typically meet up everyone week or two on a saturday and work on our own projects or help each other out. Nothing like having an extra set of hands to rip down some plywood. Or an extra set of eyes to notice that you’re about to put your hand in harms way.
While we are both learning, we’re trying different things and get to see what the other is doing and use them as a reference. To date, most of the work has been done in my workshop, but now that Adam has his own place and is amassing tools, we’ve done a bit of work getting things set up in his own workshop.
As a result, woodworking has become a saturday activity while my family is out doing their own activities. It doesn’t always pan out each week, but getting some regular time in to do a hobby is clearly a good thing.
It’s a delicate balance between learning and doing. The doing is often still out of necessity, but I am trying to steer the necessities of life to require more development and application of woodworking techniques and even a little of that artistic side of me that gets less attention than it should.