I took the day off of writing yesterday because I wanted to really make a dent in the new projects that I have been working on. Sometimes I find myself getting lost in the ‘social media’ part of the day and it leads me down a path that sometimes may not be very productive. I don’t worry much about this, as I feel that I do make up for my time spent fooling around with my friends and customers on the computer. Besides, there usually isn’t a day that goes by when I am not working on something for my business, so I feel little guilt when enjoying myself with my fellow creative friends and family.
I did however want to dive into the new project that I mentioned in my last post. For those who may have missed it – I want to do a series of patterns geared for those who may be newer to the scroll saw and just learning. It had recently dawned on me that as my own skills have been improving, many of my projects have increased in difficulty as well. While there is nothing wrong with this at all, I did begin to see the need to balance what we had to offer our customers with some designs that were technically a bit simpler so that even new people could accomplish them, as well as learn from them.
I was amazed at the responses that I received from that blog – both publicly on the many places where I post this blog and privately through emails. It seems that I hit a nerve here and that there is a bit of a demand for these types of patterns. Now the challenge for me was to make patterns that were not particularly difficult, but also attractive and desirable.
I also wanted to come up with a unique name for these types of projects so that customers can easily find them among our many patterns that we offer. We have so many patterns on our site that they could easily get lost in the shuffle of things, as many of our nice patterns tend to do.
After much consideration, I settled on the name of ”Early Inspirations”.
I didn’t want to use the word “beginner”, because some of what I plan to include will have skill levels that will fall into what I would categorize as “upper beginner to intermediate”. I want these patterns to be somewhat like stepping stones which a newer woodworker would be able to accomplish and will help them advance their craft and ability. In order to advance, we need to push the envelope a bit and while these patterns aren’t going to be difficult, they are hopefully going to be a step beyond what is typically thought of as “beginning” scroll sawing and they will encourage the sawyer to try some new things and learn new techniques – one small step at a time.
What will also make these patterns unique is that I am going to be very explicit on my instructions. Those of you who use and purchase my patterns already know that I take great care to write my instructions so that even a beginner scroll sawyer can accomplish the pattern. This has been a practice that I have followed from the beginning of my design career. However, the patterns in this series will be even more specific on their instructions and really focus on explaining things fully so that those newer to sawing can be guided through the process. Of course, those with more experience can still enjoy the designs, and may only need to skim over the instructions, but I want the information there for the newer people, and perhaps the more seasoned woodworker will learn something new as well. I see it as a win/win for everyone.
That being said, below is a sample of the drawings that I worked on yesterday:
They are samples from each of the eight new patterns that I am introducing. As you can see, I decided to focus on wildlife for the most part. I think it offers a great variety of subjects which will appeal to many.
These are only half the drawings, as each pattern will contain two complementary designs. They will offer them in two sizes (8” x 10” and 5” x 7”) so they can fit in standard, pre-purchased frames. I think that the larger pattern will be the best to begin with, as it will be a bit easier to cut and the smaller version will be the next step in one challenging themselves. The patterns will offer a variety of options.
I think I am going to take the day off today for the most part. At least take a short rest from these. I have some other loose ends of projects that I want to work on for myself personally, and I think I need a day. Tomorrow we are heading to my dear friend’s house in Digby for an Easter dinner and celebration. Here in Canada, we also celebrate “Easter Monday” and most businesses are closed. I look forward to getting out and having a nice visit.
I hope you all have a great Sunday. For those of you who celebrate Easter – I wish you a Happy Easter. May you all have a wonderful day!
-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"