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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Oldest Apprentice In Town?

Possibly. Yes, that would be me. Today was the first day spent with Haydn. I learned how to cut a mount, and how to make a frame. I made four mounts, two of which went off to live with a customer as part of a framed photograph (oh yes, I'm smug...). I also practised using the machine that cuts the moulding, so that I know how to use it. Tomorrow, I'll be cutting more mounts, on the principle that practice makes perfect, and cutting more bits of scrap wood up, to get the hang of the machine.

I'm aiming for Unconscious Competence. I love this model of learning, which suggests that there are four stages. You start off at Unconscious Incompetence; you don't know how to do whatever it is, and, in fact don't know what you have to learn to do it. Then you move to Conscious Incompetence; you know that you can't do it, but at least you know what it is you have to learn (which is pretty much the stage I'm at at the moment for mount cutting, if not for everything else). Then, you move to Conscious Competence; you've learned what you need to know to do whatever it is, but you do have to concentrate hard and occasionally check your notes, just to be on the safe side. Unconscious Competence is the final do whatever it is almost without thinking about it, as when you drive for fifty miles and realise you don't actually remember doing it. I don't know how long it's going to take me, but I suspect it'll be a while. For more information about this useful wee matrix, take a look here.

What I did discover, though, is that a. I can do this, and b. I like it. I'm really excited about the thought of being able to carry out every stage in the creation of an art work, from its conception through to its framing. Watch this space for more bulletins (and even a few pictures!).

I didn't take any pictures today; the mounts I cut were for a portrait, and it didn't seem appropriate to show that here. Instead, feast your eyes on an older piece, Blue Maze, which doesn't have a frame...yet...


ZudaGay said...

Yay! for you!! It is always great to learn a new skill to add to your arsenal. Love that! Can't wait to see your framed piece when you get it done.

June said...

I'm having a serious case of envy -- and I love your four stages. They seem totally right to me. As I am wont to say (in my more vulgar moments) you can't learn to stop wetting your pants until you learn what the signals that you are about to do so are. That's the Conscious Incompetence stage.

I should find a framing workshop for myself -- it's one of those mysteries that would make me feel initiated.

Colours and Textures said...

I do some of my framing and cutting mounts does get easier. Keep at it.