Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Adopting Kaizen

My desk this morning

I read a post yesterday by Amy Crawley and in it (near the end of the post) she mentioned the Japanese philosophy of "Kaizen". Making small changes or improvements on a regular basis. I love this idea. And I think adopting and adapting it to fit my life would work wonders. 

Green bits, parts of class demos, pieces of abandoned work

In my jewelry making I often get stuck when looking at the big picture.  The end product. As you can see by all the bits and pieces I hold on to forever in little trays.  Bits and pieces just waiting to become... something.  Anything.

Ancient fired and polished treasures - forgotten and forlorn

So I've decided that I need to start giving my bits and pieces new life. It's my one a day challenge to myself. Each day, I'll find some time to take one item and move it to the next step. Take an unfinished piece of greenware, complete and fire it. Or take a fired bit and make a piece of jewelry. Lord knows I have enough to keep me occupied for a good long while.

And on another note... I fired the first batch of student produced bronze last night.  Huzzah! It all came out beautifully.  Not colorful, but sintered, which is the important thing. And can you see the pencil mark on the pendant below? We marked the greenware at the center to know where to drill hanging holes and darned if they weren't still there when I pulled them out of the kiln! Graphite is carbon based isn't it? So of course, if it was buried in carbon it wouldn't be burned away. Fancy that! Another fascinating new discovery about bronze clay firing.

5 comments:

Angela said...

Wow ! Do you have a bench full of goodies !!! I love those trays, they look super practical to organize stuff while having everything at hand. The one with the shiny stuff looks ready to go ! Good for you ! Great resolution !

Ag alchemy said...

I LOVE this idea! I have SO many trinkets of the "unfinished" and finished variety that would benefit from this! Thank you!

susan

Amy Crawley said...

Hi Lora,

What a great way to begin using the concept of Kaizen. Yea for small steps and small successes!

-Amy

Anonymous said...

Wow Lora, that's it! I'm joining you in this. My bits and pieces are all over the place, not neatly organised like yours. First task is to organise!

Thanks for the inspiration!
Maggie

Patrik's Studio said...

Kaisen...HI!