Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Written Patterns vs Video and the People Behind Them

Which type of pattern do you prefer?  Do you like a written out pattern or one that is fully photo or fully video?  I think there is a happy medium.

Personally, written patterns with graphs or diagrams and/or a few progress photos are my preference. BUT I do like links to technique videos for those harder skills. These make it easier for people to dive into more intricate skills, especially if they don't have access to someone local to teach them on something they might otherwise pass up. 

Of course for GoodKnit Kisses I do this in all of my patterns, but I also make some patterns full video tutorials as well.  Even though the pattern is video I'm making an effort now to put the pattern on Ravelry or a digital store like Vivaloom.com or Etsy. In doing this I hope my video heavy audience will make the effort to leap into patterns for themselves.  

Since teaching on YouTube, obviously video works for myself and my audience. I find that we dismiss, as a whole, the auditory learner. I understand there is a discussion on Ravelry right now and some circles to dissuade and bad mouth videos in general.  I have not read these discussions or been dragged into any (only told by a few there are these discussions happening).  Honestly I don't feel the need to go into forums and justify what I do.  It's not for everyone.  However, some need to put auditory and visual moving cues together to tactically become aware of how to manipulate stitches. Many around the world do not have access locally or even regionally to a person or place to teach them advanced skills. Photos and videos do assist well for those people.

For me starting out I had no idea where to go.  My Local Yarn Store (LYS) that was still in business at the time was extremely rude to me when calling because I was loom knitting.  When searching for information on loom knitting I really didn't know what to search for.  All I knew was to search for the brand I was using. At the time I wasn't proficient at all how to use Google to my advantage and search for things.  My life in Interior Design and Commercial design, then floor covering, was completely unrelated.  No one near me had a clue and even craft stores at the time looked strangely at me.  At the time it was random to get a YouTube or any video to appear in search results.  Happily, a video popped up and I devoured watching it.  It was terribly done but really helped me.  I started clicking on and watching the few I could find.  As I learned terms and resources I gobbled up what I could but had this desire to help others who may need help like me.  You see, I also had a memory issue.

Back in 1995 I sustained a head injury which caused memory issues ever since.  Retaining skills and translating things from books into tactile knowledge and working the stitches over and over required more than repetition.  It caused a real NEED to see it over and over again.  There was no one to help me.  I would work on converting needle stitches over and figure it out but the next day would completely forget what I did or what the notes I had written meant. I started making videos to help myself and putting them online.  Knitting was becoming a therapy not only for my memory but was also helping me with post-partum.  I took it up after being inspired when reconnecting with an old friend on Facebook now living in another state.  She was knitting with needles but I had carpel tunnel and so the loom worked well for me then. Feeling worse then the "baby-blues", I took up arms strong in the knowledge I was crafty and smart.  "I can do all things!", I said to quote a popular scripture (Philippians 4:13).

I could talk all day about how I've progressed through the years and learned and even gained healing in many areas but its strays too far from the point in this article.  My point is, videos help people of all backgrounds and strengths.  SO when you go forward, think about what makes you uniquely you.  Think about how others may need to learn different because they are special in a different way as you are.  However, if you are someone like me who really does need that movement of video and audio working harmoniously…would you take the time to save the pattern, read through it and make an effort to learn?  Challenge yourself to new heights and even find more difficult things to learn.  You may discover a new part about yourself and LOVE it!  Besides, there will always be a community of people along the way who understand and can encourage you.

Much love to you all this Valentine's week.  Please comment below and let me low your story.  It is in sharing our own lives that we enrich others and even heal!

Happy Yarn Crafting everyone!

Kristen Mangus

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