At a certain point, after you’ve put mounds of passion and time into a thing, it begins to take on a life of its own. Especially when there is a potpourri of dynamic (often quirky) people involved. Far from being solely the direct product of Jim and my prodding and shaping, the shop has begun to shape itself. I walk in some days to discover new faces, new projects, even new rearrangements of the shop. This kind of bustle, brimming with creative energy, is a delight.
Seeing how the shop has evolved and is evolving, I can’t help but notice a resemblance to my design process. It rarely begins with a crystal clear end product. It begins with some intrigue. A shape, a piece of wood. Perhaps several curiosities or thoughts, disparite as they might be. And I put them together. Turn them around. Stand them on their head. I go, “hmmm.” And it begins to take shape, just ever so noticeably, before I spin it around again or add another element. And go “hmmm” again.
The shop started with a few upstart tinkerers, a barren room in a killer space and a handful of second-rate machines. Then similarly curious people started rearing their heads wanting to dive in and make.
Folks from other organizations started saying “hmmm” too, and popped in for a visit and some fiddling, like Max B. here from Clark Fulton Development corporation, who caught the “cutting-board-bug” on a trip to the shop.
Some folks were taking the plunge all the way, looking to utilize the shop’s evolving resources as a home base to carve out careers in making. These folks have made a home indeed, and are turning out some pretty sweet schtuff.
Jim and I kept and keep plugging away, turning the shop on its head and going “hmmm.” And in turn, I’m pretty certain it’s started shaping us. Jim’s found his way over to the lathe and, boy, do those two get along!
I’ve gazed on, giddy, as I see the work getting created around me. To the chagrin of my fellows in the shop, this means I have about 30 different “ideas” that have begun in some form and find nooks and crannies in the shop to reside until I pull them out again and go “hmmm” with a new eye or inspiration.
So, what’s new with the shop these days? Well, you might just have to ask it. It might make you go “hmmmm.”