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Thinking With My Hands

Posted September 25, 2013 | 11:49 am, by nadine

Hey blog, its been a while. Truth be told I got kind of distracted by summer and went traveling for a bit. Then I sort of took some time to ride my bike and smoke some ribs. Summer is the season I usually bugger off. But seeing as its fall, and I’m starting to get back into things, I figured I should revisit you.

Lately I’ve been contemplating my hands. They really are marvels, your hands. Evolution has done a fine job of giving us such adaptive, and expressive appendages. They are, in short, some of the best tools around. I find it a bit of a shame they don’t seem to get as much attention as our brains.

Sure, our brains do a lot of things, even in our sleep. But I like to think of hands as an extension of your brain, as opposed to something your brain just operates.

This fall I’ve pretty much jumped back into fabrication. I decided on metal, so most things I’m looking to experiment with are welding, casting, milling, carving etc.

jaggedring

carving wax for a ring design

Amazing ring workshop space

Amazing ring workshop space

Silver Band

Silver Band [hammer, soldering, press]

Its given me a renewed appreciation for physical problem solving, and how immediate the feedback of “Does this work, will this fit, will this survive [x], does this need modification” is. Even something as simple as working on my old beater bike gives me these insights.

derailleur

Cleaning and fixing an old derailleur.

Its also given me a renewed sense of patience when it comes to learning things. I tend to give myself a longer lead when it comes to learning physical things or doing physical work, and I’m hoping that attitude translates over to digital learning. I find I think I should learn digital things really fast, then get frustrated when it doesn’t happen quickly. I then toss myself into a “Oh I should know more by now” spiral, which, frankly, is self-defeating.

Central Tech's machine / welding shop

Central Tech’s machine / welding shop

Its been a little while now since I took a break from web design, and I still don’t miss it, but I do concede that I’m not always sure where I’m pointing. I’m hoping that some fabrication experience will round out my knowledge pot and help me start to solidify a direction.

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