‘By Hand & Eye’ the Holiday Special

You’ve read the book. Now see the movie.

Animator Andrea Love and Jim Tolpin, one of the authors of “By Hand & Eye,” have produced a charming stop-motion video that explains the pre-industrial design process explored in the book. If you like the Rankin/Bass Christmas specials from the 1970s (“Year Without a Santa Claus” and “Rudolph and Frosty’s Christmas in July”) you’ll dig this video.

In it, Jim’s puppet explains how to design a stepstool using the size of your body, basic proportions and a little humor (I love the Vitruvian Dog).

It’s a great little film that Andrea and Jim have been working on for a long time. Enjoy!

— Christopher Schwarz

About Lost Art Press

Publisher of woodworking books and videos specializing in hand tool techniques.
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30 Responses to ‘By Hand & Eye’ the Holiday Special

  1. jmuhaw says:

    It is a great little segment….Well done!

  2. George Lucas should have contacted Andrea for the Star Wars Christmas Special. Best thing I’ve seen all week!

  3. ant11sam says:

    I bet this “movie” will be nominated to the oscars (at least the woodworking one’s)!
    Great video!!!! thumbs UP!!!!

  4. Gene ORourke says:

    That’s awesome! I’d love to see the animation of “Grandpa’s Workshop” or “Calvin Cobb!”

  5. snwoodwork says:

    Darn entertaining.

  6. ironmike7707 says:

    This vignette took work and patience and creativity. Which made me think about all the people I see involved with PW and Lost Art Press. I see not only vast amounts of historical skill and wisdom being cultivated and shared by this group of artisans and teachers. I also get glimpses of a certain positive energy and can-do spirit that seems less and less common in other areas of our society today. I appreciate the subtle but frequent reminder from this outfit that there is still hope for us.

  7. rdwilkins says:

    I’ve got to ‘hand’ it to you, that’s a great video.

  8. cmhawkins says:

    The content, narration, animation and music all are 1st rate. And as a bonus, it’s fun to watch. And now it’s time to return to my exercises in the book. They aren’t trivial for me. This is a good sign that I’m learning.

  9. woodworkerme says:

    I have done stop motion years ago ( not well by the way) so I can really appreciate this work. it is a great way to explain the info.. I would love to see a 30 minute video on some woodworking project done like this..good work very cute.still just a kid at hart.

  10. Matt Merges says:

    What Ironmike said. And thank you for the time spent on this project, and for generously sharing it for free.

  11. m46opie says:

    Loved it. Reminds me of Davy and Goliath.

  12. 52woodbutcher says:

    THANK YOU, Andrea, Jim, and Chris! I’ve watched the video 3 times in the last 15 minutes, and I can’t stop grinning! Chris: New poster suggestion: “The Vitruvian Dog”!
    Regards, Wes Faulkenberry, Jr.

  13. I really enjoyed this. thanks for sharing.

  14. toolnut says:

    Put a smile on my face. Thanks.

  15. meanmna says:

    Excellent. I second the T-Shirt idea for the Vitruvian Dog.

  16. jenohdit says:

    Blake’s images isn’t god or God, it’s Urizen who is generally believed to represent the demiurge. Depending on whose interpretation of that you want to go with he’s either a good guy or not. See also Prometheus or in some systems Lucifer, who has become associated with Satan by some Christians.

    The idea isn’t so much the creation of order out of chaos, it’s giving material form to the ideal. That has been a very important idea in architecture since the Middle Ages. That subject became more complex in the Renaissance and Baroque eras as the role of the architect shifted from being an on-site master builder to that of the creator of images that in turn guided professional non-architect builders.

    The Vitruvian man as depicted by Leonardo was about as far as you can get from simple geometry or whole number rations. That images shows the ideal man as the solution to the ancient unsolved problem of squaring the circle.

    Another ancient problem, doubling the square was fundamental to a lot of traditional proportioning systems. It’ called variously by that name, quadrature or rotations of squares. All it means is drawing a square and constructing a second square around it with the vertices of the first square at the center points of the sides of the second square.

    Once that done, repeatedly if desired, an huge range of proportions are generated. The interesting ones are not whole number ratios. The ironic thing about that video is that the proportions of Blake’s image are at a glance obviously 1 to the square root of 2, exactly what doubling the square gives. Even the ancients didn’t need a compass to multiply by 2 or 3.

    This essay give a good overview of traditional proportioning systems in Northern European architecture. http://www.intbau.org/archive/essay10.htm Regulating lines are the key. The first illustration is particularly good a showing how the skeleton of a proportioning system gets fleshed out..

  17. randomrog says:

    I have visited Jim’s new shop several times and Ms. Love has captured Jim, Ottie (his dog) and the shop very well. Shockingly accurate too! Random ROG

  18. Kinderhook88 says:

    That was the best three and I half minutes of learning I have had to date. Thanks

  19. enjoyed the video, thanks!

  20. abtuser says:

    Very nice way to end the week.

  21. chazlip says:

    Nice job, guys. Enjoyed this.

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