Monday, May 3, 2010

"You simply have to participate"

When I speak to people about crafting, I often get the same response- "Well, I'm not good at making anything" or "I'm not that creative". Lucky for y'all I found this article, by the lovely Faythe Levine, that provides great insight.

What’s the role of skill in the D.I.Y. community?

By Faythe Levine

The roll of skill within the D.I.Y. craft community is varied from self-taught to well-trained makers. My personal belief is that the foundation of D.I.Y. is that there are no rules. Based on this opinion, there is no imposed system of ranking in regards to where you went to school or who you studied under. To be a part of this loose creative movement that continues to grow and change over the years, you simply have to participate.

This makes it very difficult to define and talk about what is going on within our community, especially when talking about topics such as skill and quality. I often like to remind people that D.I.Y. is not just an aesthetic, but for a lot of us, D.I.Y. is a lifestyle, a decision making process that overflows into all of our daily choices.

This past September I spoke at the American Craft Council Conference “Creating a New Craft Culture”. What I didn’t realize when stepping into the conference was that a large part of my presence there was to define and surprisingly to me, defend D.I.Y. craft. When making my film Handmade Nation, this was not my agenda. My number one goal was to produce a film about the people around me making amazing things, focusing on this incredible supportive creative community...

I have realized I do walk a fine line. First and foremost, I promote, some would even say preach, that making something with your hands is empowering, powerful and in my opinion political. I truly believe that in this day and age if people are turning off their TV’s to make a creative decision, even if it’s one I am personally uninterested in, it’s a positive exciting step in the right direction for humanity...

D.I.Y. is about community, sharing and support. The most frequent feedback I get after a screening of my film is “I am inspired to go home and make something”. That is what it is all about...

Read more here

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