Thursday, May 6, 2010


Today I was finishing off this Cuckoo Clock, and realised that once again it had come out a wee bit (or more than a wee bit) wonky. I debated whether I should get out the ruler, measure it up and trim it down, but I thought no, I'll leave it.
As I cut everything by hand, I freely admit that sometimes my little jig saw zips through the wood of it's own accord and doesn't follow the lines EXACTLY. But I reckon it's OK to have a few wonky details. I have never been a perfectionist and mostly favour things with character and a touch of oddness. Thats not to say I would choose a dodgy product over a properly finished one, but I can happily live with imperfection and do!
How do you feel about imperfection?
I subscribe to the aethetic that many Japanese artists embrace called wabi-sabi or "the art of finding beauty in imperfection".
Just last night I was reading "Made by Hand" by Mark Frauenfelder of Make magazine and Boing,Boing fame and was in total agreement with this quote by Eric Thompson of Ramshackle Solid. "I like seems more real. It seems more like it's a living thing or has a history.... if everything's perfect it's kind of boring".
A guy who believes this and calls his blog Ramshackle Solid is a winner in my book!


  1. It looks gorgeous to me, just like all your work.

    I think there's a difference between imperfection and shoddy work. Imperfection has nothing to do with the amount of care of intent that goes into something hand made. It's just something that happens when things are created by hand (and heart). So I'm with you, there's always room for some imperfection in my world.

  2. I definitely think that it's the imperfection and the slight wonk that becomes just like the 'makers mark'. Handmade is never going to be able guarantee complete perfection, unlike a production line using computerised machinery that churns out thousands of perfect products all in a row (just like where I used to work).

  3. I love it! Just perfect to me!
    Sophie x

  4. Looks handmade, which is the point. I can't see what you would imagine is wonky, i love it!! I often go for 'eye' over ruler, hmmmm . . . i do come from a family who can NOT hang pictures straight . . . maybe ruler could be handy?? Your clock looks just fine to me. Love Posie

  5. Yes Posie,I work on the "eye" over ruler principal most of the time too!
    I like the idea that the wonkiness becomes the "makers mark" Cam.
    Yes, there's shoddy and then there's not quite perfect.Totally different Cath!
    And thanks to you for the clocky love Sophie

  6. Oh your cuckoo clock possesses its typical charm and uniqueness that one would come to expect with your totally original art. Liz I am SO with you with your work process. I totally go with the flow (quite literally with brush & ink) I prefer 'guesstimation' over exactness and I totally embrace irregularities and idiosyncrasies, these qualities bring out charm and character.


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