My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond #316: Sharing Through Teaching

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Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 04-21-2011 01:23 PM 4890 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 315: Two Short Videos for You Part 316 of My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond series Part 317: An Unexpected Post »

I am very pleased that you all liked the short videos that I posted yesterday. It shows me that there are lots of people who are interested in scroll sawing and would like to learn more about it. It also makes me want to do more teaching and help people understand how much fun and how relaxing scroll sawing can be.

Earlier this week, I received some wonderful pictures from my friends Erwin and Edith (Bearpie here on Lumberjocks.) While I was away, I had received a message from Erwin that he was planning to have a visit from his grandchildren and was having trouble finding a simple scroll saw pattern that he could use to help teach his granddaughter Evelyn to scroll saw on.

Being fresh from the show, I immediately thought of the design that I had used in my lectures to demonstrate many of the basic aspects of scroll sawing. Since I still had the file with me for the printout, I sent it to Erwin to see if he thought it would be appropriate for them to use.

Upon my return home, I received a beautiful note form he and Edith, telling me about their experiences with their granddaughters. It made me so happy to think that I was able to help in a small way and I felt so proud of the girls and also of Erwin and Edith for sharing their love of creating and teaching their grand children.

I asked them if I could share the pictures here and they said I could.

This is Evelyn’s finished bunny dish. She is only 8 years old and did a wonderful job on it.

From Erwin's Grandchildren's Scrolling and Painting

Evelyn was getting her footings on the saw and made the back of the bunny a little more ripply than the original pattern. She said it looked more like fur that way. You know, I think it does too! I like her version of it much better!

Here is Evelyn with her bunny all painted:

From Erwin's Grandchildren's Scrolling and Painting

I think her smile says it all!

While Evelyn was busy scroll sawing, Edith was busy painting with the other girls.

Silvia (age 5) really liked painting and did a beautiful job. She painted this figure from the skating pond set that I had designed and did a wonderful job with it:

From Erwin's Grandchildren's Scrolling and Painting

Even seven year old Gretchen did some painting. That is her tree along with more of Silvia’s artwork:

From Erwin's Grandchildren's Scrolling and Painting

If you want to read more about Erwin’s experience, he wrote a blog of it HERE. I know his story will inspire you!

Spending time with children and teaching others is one of the greatest ways you can share your creativity. Several years ago when my grandmother passed away, while going through her things, we came across a card that I made her when I was six or seven years old. It was an Easter card with a bunny on it. It was made on pink construction paper and had a white cut out bunny on it with an orange carrot. Each of the pieces were cut out of colored paper and glued on the card. It had “Happy Easter” written on the top with purple crayon and a white cotton ball stuck to the bunny for a tail. And of course, there was a speckling of silver glitter in the grass.

Seeing that card brought back memories of my grandmother telling me that “The best gift I get from you would be a home made card.” I remember asking her what she wanted for this occasion and that and it seemed that was always the answer. I also remember thinking at the time that I didn’t understand why such a silly thing would be a good gift for her.

I do understand now.

I attribute much of my creativity to my upbringing. Not only to family members who encouraged me to draw and paint, but also those in my young life who encouraged other forms of creativity (my neighbor, Mrs. Kuba, who taught me to embroider on dish towels on her front porch when I was a young girl comes immediately to mind.)

These activities may seem trivial at the time, but I do feel they make lasting impressions on children. The connection you make with them, along with the sense of accomplishment they feel is a wonderful self-esteem builder at a time when they are perhaps unsure of themselves. Don’t underestimate its impact.

Perhaps that is why I choose to do what I do. I don’t just consider myself someone who sells patterns. I try to teach in every pattern I produce and share the joy of accomplishment with others. Nothing gives me more pleasure than accomplishing that.

I want to thank Erwin and Edith and all the rest of you who have encouraged me to continue to teach. I maintain that I still learn from you all too every single day, and together we enrich each others lives and make this world a little happier.

Have a wonderful day today and share some of your skill with another. It will surely make the day even better.

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

8 comments so far

View patron's profile


13606 posts in 3366 days

#1 posted 04-21-2011 02:22 PM

and here we are still
thanks for teaching

i like the cookies and milk
and being tucked in
for the nap

great gifts with the girls
the smiles do say it all

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9231 posts in 2945 days

#2 posted 04-21-2011 02:39 PM

Make mine double stuffed oreos! :p


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

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3140 days

#3 posted 04-21-2011 02:54 PM

great blog Sheila
thank´s for the lesson :-)
a morfar nap wuold be nice
but toooo much to doooo
I have to hurry but don´t worry
I know where the cookkie´s are
so a handfull go´s with the coffee
and I can hold a few hours more

have a great day all of you
take care

View spunwood's profile


1202 posts in 2861 days

#4 posted 04-21-2011 03:26 PM

Wonderful story. Thank you for sharing.

-- I came, I was conquered, I was born again. ἵνα ὦσιν ἓν

View Bob Kollman's profile

Bob Kollman

1798 posts in 3216 days

#5 posted 04-21-2011 03:28 PM

Love it….

-- Bob Kenosha Wi.

View Bearpie's profile


2601 posts in 3043 days

#6 posted 04-21-2011 04:28 PM

What a nice surprise to waking up and seeing a post dedicated to my grandchildren and to us, it warms my heart! Thank you. You have a wonderful sense of design and knowing what would be good for children. When I searched for suitable patterns appropriate for an 8 year old, all I could find were either too simple, too complicated or subject matter not suitable. The minute I saw the pattern you sent and suggested, I knew it would be perfect for Evelyn. Apparently she thought so too as evidenced by her smile! So again, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for making a project with my granddaughter even more memorable!

With love, Erwin, Jacksonville,FL

-- Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

View lumberdustjohn's profile


1263 posts in 3192 days

#7 posted 04-21-2011 05:07 PM

Thanks for posting this.
Young people can touch the heart like no other.

-- Safety first because someone needs you.

View William's profile


9949 posts in 2868 days

#8 posted 04-21-2011 08:07 PM

I’m headed over to check out Bearpie’s post now. I love seeing kids getting shop time. Most of you have seen me write it many time, the youth are the futue of wood working. Without them, our craft dies with us.
And you’re write about her bunny. She has an eye for details. Noone says she had to follow the pattern exactly. I tell people often that scroll saw patterns are like road maps. Just because there is a road on a map doesn’t mean you have to take it. There is usually more than one way to reach a destination. One road may get you there. Another road may get you there with more scenery.


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