My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond #197: Teaching Through Videos

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Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 12-17-2010 02:28 PM 4644 reads 3 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 196: Did Anyone See Wednesday??? Part 197 of My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond series Part 198: Making Some Headway »

Sometimes all it takes is just one person to ask a question for me to be inspired. I believe that is why networking and interaction with others who have similar interests is very important.

There are many small bits of information that we have learned from our daily woodworking and other related crafts and after years of doing things, we take them for granted. I believe this is true for all of us. In the process of creating, we have performed these steps so many times that they become second nature and we don’t even have to think about them. We just know it is part of the process.

Those of us who have had children may have at times had the experience of having one of their kids come into the shop and watch us work. When this occurred, we may have been surprised (and some people annoyed) by the barrage of questions pertaining to even the simplest part of the process. I personally never found it annoying. To me, it indicated both an interest on the child’s part and also it made me acutely aware of just how much I had learned and could offer someone else. Perhaps it was the beginning of me wanting to teach. It gave me a sense of purpose and accomplishment to help others develop their own skills and creativity. I wanted to share the good feelings that I experienced and found that one of the most satisfying ways I could accomplish that was to contribute to helping someone else.

We are all teachers to some extent. Whether it is by helping a new co-worker learn the ropes at your job, giving advice on which tool to buy, or even sharing a recipe, teaching is part of our everyday lives.

People typically learn in three different ways: The auditory learner learns from listening to instructions. The visual learner learns from seeing something done. And the kinesthetic learner benefits most from getting involved and actually doing whatever the task may be. Most people are a combination of all three types. I believe that is why some people do fine with written instructions, such as books or patterns only while others do better in a classroom setting using lectures and videos and still others like hand-on experiences.

We are fortunate enough to live in a time when we have a wealth of information right on our desktop in the form of our computers. Never before have we had so much learning power and information right at our fingertips. Not only can we find written information, but we can also write our own curriculum and tailor our own personal ‘classes’ to suit our needs and purposes. Much of the information is free and available for anyone with an interest. It truly is an incredible thing when we think about it.

As many of you know, I have began making some short videos in order to teach others and share what I have learned in regards to scroll sawing. I also paint a bit and I have found that many, many woodworkers have the desire to paint and finish their projects also. This may not entail fully painting them, but as with many things, even small parts of the process can be pertinent and applied to many different aspects of their work. Since it is difficult to make videos based on each individual question, I feel that by showing the process of creating a painted piece from start to finish will encompass many different steps that are useful to all types of woodworking and painting projects.

Yesterday Kelly (rivergirl) asked me a question regarding transfer paper and transferring a design. When I read this, it was one of those times when I realized that it was something that I took for granted everyone knew. Although I am in “elf mode” making my Christmas gifts, I was caught up enough to switch gears and continue on with my videos. I felt that it would be more effective to show her (and everyone else) rather than just explain the process. Since I was going to do these anyway, it gave me a shove in that direction. I am still rather nervous doing videos and it is difficult for me to get up the nerve to do them, let alone post them. But after I get rolling, I was not unhappy with the results and I felt they got the point across OK. I know there is lots of room for improvement, but at least this is a start and I hope you like them.

I began with a video on how to transfer designs to wood. Even though this was done on a small scale, you can do this with any size piece or project. Following is the first video:

I went on to the basecoating process. The base coat is the first step in any decorative painting (and also the last for many people who don’t like to paint!) I found that many times people get impatient and try to do things all at once and as a result make a mess and get quite discouraged. As woodworkers we know that most times when we make a project, it takes several small steps to complete a project properly. The same is true with finishing and painting. By laying a good foundation and doing the basic steps properly, it is easy to obtain great professional looking results.

In the following videos, I show the basic process of basecoating. These videos came out a bit longer than the prior ones because during the process I discuss several important and basic things you can do to make the process go smoothly for you and be succcessful in your painting. I initially was going to cut away and come back, as I will probably do in subsequent projects, but I do feel that by watching me paint in real-time you will be able to see all the small issues that may come up and also how to correct them.

The second video was part one of Basecoating The Snowman:

And here is the second part:

Once I got rolling, I forgot the camera was there and I just continued on. The last one was a bit long, I realize, but you can always skip over it if you wish. It is funny, but they didn’t seem that long when I was making them. Probably because I was busy and in my element.

I realize that I don’t have what is categorized as ‘strong voice’ and I know I need to work on that. I usually sit here and have conversations with my cats and they don’t listen anyway so it is normal for me to just talk on and on. Sometimes they answer, but I secretly think they are probably telling me to shut up so they could get back to sleep. I don’t understand “cat” as much as I pretend that I do and I like to think that they are telling me that I am really rather interesting. Who’s to argue anyway?

As always, I do appreciate your comments. I had some nice Mozart piano concertos playing in the background, but I kept the volume very low knowing that my voice is not loud and I didn’t want it to interfere and be annoying. I do think I could have raised the volume up just a tad though to fill the dead space a bit, but perhaps I will next time. I think I may just be getting picky.

Editing the videos and getting them posted took the latter part of the day. I am getting to know the software a bit better, but it is still slow and uploading them took a bit. Needless to say I didn’t get any painting done on the sewing box. That will come today. :) I am still “on schedule” if you will and all is well.

Thank you Kelly for asking a great question and inspiring me to do this. Every video that I get under my belt gets easier. By March when I have to speak in front of real people, I should be a pro! (YAH! Right!!)

I hope you enjoy them and maybe even learn something from them. Have a GREAT day everyone! :D

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

7 comments so far

View BigTiny's profile


1676 posts in 2887 days

#1 posted 12-17-2010 03:17 PM

Hi Sheila.

Glad to see your videos are coming along so well. Keep ot up and you’ll have your own talk show on the telly!

-- The nicer the nice, the higher the price!

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4159 days

#2 posted 12-17-2010 03:53 PM

I’ve said this before – I like your voice and I think you give just the right amount of information!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View brunob's profile


2277 posts in 4168 days

#3 posted 12-17-2010 04:39 PM

I agree with Ms Debbie. I like your voice. Sounds ‘homey’ and that’s a good thing. Keep talking to the cats.

-- Bruce from Central New, if you'll pardon me, I have some sawdust to make.

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3114 days

#4 posted 12-17-2010 09:26 PM

the music in the background was a nise add :-) and I agree with you a tadd more on the volume
but this is allso something you can play with in voice over to change it up and down or lieve it out
when the time comes to that
for now its great just to have the basic tecnic learned till you have comfort with the media
and you are do good already :-)

have a nice weekend Sheila

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18271 posts in 3675 days

#5 posted 12-18-2010 09:08 AM

your videos will be popular, trust me :-)

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View rivergirl's profile


3201 posts in 2837 days

#6 posted 12-19-2010 12:13 PM

I commented here a few days earlier, but the cyber monster must have eaten my comments? Suffice to say that the video was great! And thanks for the transfer tips! It was nice of you to do that for me. :)

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View Handi75's profile


377 posts in 3473 days

#7 posted 12-22-2010 11:37 PM


Very nice Videos. I enjoyed them. Very Educational. I used to do the Carbon one you explained in your First Video, taking a Pencil and Scouring the back of it with the Graphite Pencil to imitate Carbon Paper.

When I was in School and I know it was Kinda Silly, I used to Draw Designs on paper like that, Then Wet your Skin and stick that paper on your Skin and wait for a second or so then pull off and the Design would Transfer to your Skin like a Graphite Tatoo lol.

Them were the days!


-- Jimmy "Handi" Warner,,, Twitter: @Handisworkshop, @HandisCreations

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