Craftsmanship in the Digital Age
For all fields, the digitization of manufacturing constituted a revolution. Manufacturers have employed digital methods from the initial design stage to the final dispatch of things. Each strategy has been developed and modified to increase efficiency, reduce waste, and stay current with market developments. For the client, more efficiency means simpler access and lower prices. We can understand and celebrate the value of professional building and design abilities, even though we frequently forego true craftsmanship in favor of ease and cost.
Nonetheless, we look to be nearing the end of a time of exceptional craftsmanship. From furniture design to the fashion industry to the food and drink we eat, products honor their handcrafted, artisan beginnings. Handcraft has had a slow but steady revival as a result of a rejection of mass manufacture and infirmity.
Traditional craftsmanship has recently received a lot of attention, but its influence on design has always been present, although in the background. In the design field, Eames, Ercol, Hansen, and Knoll are all well-known names. Many of their pieces are considered to be one-of-a-kind in terms of design and utility. While digital methods help them generate many of the things they do now, they are all companies associated with excellent craftsmanship, with traditional craftsmen's talents often playing a part.
It takes a lot of effort to become a competent artisan. It takes a lot of time, patience, and effort to do it right. To become a true artisan, you must be committed to continuing to improve your trade. Apprenticeships with masters of the profession who came before them have traditionally been how craftspeople acquired their trade. The reduction in demand for individualized, handcrafted items that preceded it, on the other hand, resulted in a considerable loss of peer-to-peer information and skill sharing.
It's crucial to realize the worldwide impact that this loss of skill may have had if it weren't for the artisanal competence's recent resurgence. Craftsmanship includes more than only making one-of-a-kind goods and commodities; it also includes preserving familial history.
From Scotland to Papua New Guinea, each continent, nation, city, town, and hamlet has its own distinct legacy that has been passed down via stories and abilities. This is how cultures and their history are kept and understood. When a skill, such as a language, is lost, so is its history. People are no longer perplexed as to why we make carpets the way we do. What is the significance of the form of our teapots? Why are our dwellings' roofs so steeply pitched? With time, the rationale, as well as the powers used to build it, disappears. Cultures lose their identity and history throughout time. They lose their uniqueness.
Without craftsmanship, the knowledge of materials, techniques and ingredients is also lost. Craftspeople explore the intricacies of the materials they deal with on both the inside and outside. For example, a furniture manufacturer will know the exact tensile strength of the wood they are bending, much as a brewer will know the right temperature to get the proper taste and consistency. This information is priceless in terms of inventiveness. Innovators might discover new methods to push the limits of source materials or produce different results by knowing their limitations and capabilities. This is how we, as a civilization, advance and find new things.
That isn't to imply that modernizing, digitizing, and improving efficiency would destroy the planet, halt development, and leave us without a past; it won't, at least not right now. Almost everything has been documented in some form or another in the age of the internet. In most circumstances, digitization is quite beneficial and has a significant influence on waste reduction. By understanding the importance of craftsmanship, apprenticeship, and legacy, we may have a better understanding of why we should support craftsmen and their crafts, and perhaps even learn a new skill to pass on to future generations and keep the trade alive.