Thursday, August 2, 2012

Thursday's Featured Artist - The Alchemist

Good Morning,

Thursday has arrived and I am out of Featured Artists, again.  I was the last person in the Blog Ring to be listed for a post.  I can't very well post about myself, well I could, but the blog features The Alchemist (that would be me) every day.  So what's a girl to do?

Instead of talking about myself, because that could lead to questions about the state of my mental health, I think we'll talk about what every artist uses as a tool, the hands.

Hands are amazing things, they are the first tools we learn to use.  Dexterity does not come naturally, your hands must be taught to move and cooperate in concert with each other, whether they are holding a pencil or strumming a guitar, they must be trained to do what you are asking of them.

Hand and wrist health (especially for Maillers) is very important, if I hurt or injure my hands I can not work, it is just that simple.  I require both the left and right to do things, pick up beads, hold pliers and other materials, to string, solder, bend pieces, etc... all steps in making a piece of jewelry require that I use my hands.

Before I begin any piece or long sit at the workbench, I exercise my hands, I stretch them, spread and flex my fingers wide; roll, twist, bend my wrist gently to loosen up those muscles.  Small repetitive movements can cause injury to the muscles and worse Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.  Here is a link to some exercises for your hands
Carpal Tunnel Exercises.  I highly recommend these for anyone that has to type, use tools or for jewelry makers.

Remember to work in a relaxed position.  Stop every half hour or so and check yourself.  Are you tense, are your shoulders up around your ears?  Are your hands hurting or achy.  Stop!  Stretch.  Relax.  Deep breath. 

You do not need to hold a Death Grip on any of the tools you use,  that tool is only going to do what your hands tell it to, a loose grasp will hold the tool, your hand movements do the rest.  

Treat your hands with kindness and they will serve you for a long long time.

Thank you for stopping in and having a read.

The Alchemists Vessel would like to wish you a pleasant day.

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