The Art of Craft. “Glas” and “Manliness”.

This morning while going through my weekly reading list of newsletters, emails, and RSS feeds, two links were brought to my attention. One dealt with craftsmanship, the other with glass production in Holland in the 1950’s. While both were in the same newsletter, they were not directly connected. They are however.

The short film on glass production is a perfect example of the craftsmanship that goes into creating any form of film, design, art, or object. The film itself is beautifully shot and edited. The subject matter shows the phenomenal craftsmanship that goes into making a beautiful piece of hand blown glass. The article is a history of the term “Craftsman”, and why craft is so important in the work you create.

“Make every product better than it has ever been done before. Make the parts you cannot see as well as the parts you can see. Use only the best materials for even the most everyday items. Give the same attention to the smallest details as you do to the largest. Design every item you make to last for ever.”

I won’t give away the film, but the first half is a direct set up for the second, and the finish. Watching the glass blowers work their magic, accompanied by fitting music and a beautiful job of editing make it hard to look away.

Calling All Designers. The Modern Craft Project.

Wallpaper magazine has teamed up with Kettle One Vodka to to identify and support today’s craftspeople (Great Britain, Germany, Brazil, and Australia only for now) who want to take their work, skills, and themselves to the next level. The Modern Craft Project is an ambitious undertaking that is open to anyone that thinks they have what it takes.

To promote the project Wallpaper and Kettle One have created a wonderful little video featuring various craftspeople practicing what they do best. While I love the idea of promoting the arts, that isn’t why I am posting this video. I’m posting it because of the editing and sound design. The look is great. Shallow depth of field, focus on the work being done, etc. The editing though, just crushes it. The cuts set up a visual rhythm that builds with ambient audio that creates a percussive musical score for the piece, and then fades into the quiet of the artisans in their studios.  If you have headphones put them on while watching, if not turn up the volume.

Here is a secondary support video that I found while trying to find production credits for the video above. The video that is loaded on Vimeo is more of a brand promotion for Ketel One, but still supports and links to The Modern Craft Project. And yes this video is really well made as well.

I’ve Gone All “Suburban”.

This Thursday a riding lawn mower is getting delivered to my house. Yes I caved and bought a rider. After almost two years of pushing the Worx cordless electric around the yard, I finally gave up. The Worx does a great job, I just want something that is easier to use, and fits the size of my lawn.

I ended up getting a 42 inch Craftsman mower with an automatic transmission. I figure if I am gonna go all suburban on my urban lawn, I should get the automatic. And since the mower has a cup holder, having an automatic makes it easier for me to drink beer while mowing. (no shifting gears) I went with the Sears brand after doing some pretty solid research on quality, and who manufactures Craftsman mowers for Sears. The product is solid for the price, and the mower has a ton of attachments that are available for it. Things like a snow plow, which I will probably buy this fall before winter sets in. Yes I am tired of shoveling snow, and a snow plow blade is cheaper than a snow blower.

Next Friday or Saturday I’ll post a first impressions review of the mower, and the mulching kit.