Thursday, August 20, 2015

Tutorial photos v Reality photos

I'm not sure which of these images to show first.
I wanted to make my own "stretch fabrics gauge" from cardboard.
One of the photos is taken when I got the thought "I should document making this".
While I was making it, I had fifteen pens, a few rulers, two cutting mats, blade, spare blades, green pouch to store blades, instructions for how to draw the gauge, red cardboard, red cardboard remnants and probably a cup of coffee strewn all over my desk (only some of which is captured in the picture).

The second photograph is taken after I realised "I didn't use a lot of the equipment that is strewn all over my desk" and tidied up the desk and put things away.

So which is the more useful image to demonstrate how I went about making this for myself?
Often when I follow a tutorial, it recommends "2B pencil, L-Square, Clear-Grided-Ruler..." - I don't have these items! Or I do and I can't find them, so I pull out what's to hand and instead of having a tidy list of 4 items, I have a mishmash of items that I'm making do with.
It can get very disheartening for a learner to see an online video or a blog tutorial with really tidy photos and neat point-by-point directions, no hiccups, no lines that don't align and all equipment spick-and-span, unbroken and exactly what is required for the job.
Have you ever seen a pencil sharpener in an online tutorial?!
(Have you ever rummaged to look for a pencil sharpener *during* a tutorial?!)
On the other hand, the tutor has to consider the most effective way to instruct the reader/viewer. And clutter wouldn't be helpful. But I think it is fascinating to see the contrast and to see how marketing and "the perfect image" can block us and be an obstacle to following our own haphazard make-do creativity.

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