"Do what you love for those who love what you do"

Industrial Arts

When I was in Jr. High School and High School (1959-1964) there was a term in constant use for shop class. It was called Industrial Arts. Here is a dictionary description; “a subject of study aimed at developing the manual and technical skills required to work with tools and machinery”.

In junior high, boys had to take wood shop I and II and metal shop I and II. Also print shop (hand typesetting) and general science. Unfortunately Industrial Art bore the stigma of being a less than lofty pursuit as by high school age there was a split into vocational school and regular high school. Regular high school was further split into academic study and scientific study. I chose the scientific path to follow.

I never lost interest in the shop work, being born and raised with tools in hand; I was actually quite disappointed we were not permitted to do both. Since the schools were physically separate, there was no way to cross train. This separation was a shortsighted crime of our post WWII education system, though it was done and still exists with the best intentions. My high school had the shop rooms and tools but they were closed and locked.

After my Viet Nam era Navy service where I was trained in electronics, I attended 5 years of pipe fitter apprentice training (two nights per week) at Choffin Vocational school in Youngstown, Ohio. At last my lust to make things was being fulfilled. I also continued my HVAC engineering studies with help from the industry manufactures. I was always top in every class, vocational and engineering. I eventually left the family business and went to work for one of the manufacturers, Lennox Industries.

Before Lennox, I spent nearly 20 years in a ROTARY (business person) club. I was strongly adamant and highly pleased the Boardman (Ohio) Rotary Club spent much effort in honoring students equally from both career paths.

Today, some academic and scientific trained adults are forming clubs and buying tools and machines to bring back the skills and art of working with metal, wood and other materials. They have discovered there is more to the good life than using just the mind for fulfillment. Others think being active in sports and athletics is the solution, but that doesn’t work for all of us. What is created in the mind and produced with one’s own hands is to me, as great and noble as any other physical pursuit.

For that reason, I have created this Dimensional Art Studio blog to showcase my personal “Industrial Art” in the sense that it is art with form and shape. My art is anything I make, made any way I see fit, so it is the finished (or unfinished) item that is important and displayed. I have other blogs for displaying the how-to dialogs.

I am reminded that pure art is in the eye of the beholder. I see many things poorly done and “labeled” as art that in my mind are anything but... so let it be so here. You get to decide for yourself.


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