I Love Badasses

I love badasses.

Badasses get shit done. Period. Its part of their make up. I see it a lot in creative folks and entrepreneurs. They are consummate problem solvers because they have the desire to do a thing. It might not be pretty. It might not be perfect, but it gets DONE!

I personally know of craftsman who’ve made do with what they have. Cobbling shit together because they couldn’t yet afford to invest in a forge, or a proper torch or a pottery wheel. But the desire to create pushed them to make do.

We can’t always start with the proper tools, but that doesn’t mean we can’t START! Don’t fall victim to the “I can’t because…” trap. Instead, think about what you CAN do to make it happen. Remember that most of this isn’t new. It’s been done – in some form — for centuries.  People have been painting, smithing, weaving and selling for millennia. They just did not have all the cool shit we have today.

It’s really a mindset of sorts. The “Make shit happen somehow” mindset. The inspiration and the information IS out there. The whole of the internet is a vast treasure trove of badassery. Reach out to someone who knows a little more. Don’t be afraid to get inspiration from other crafts and fields. That different perspective will inspire new ideas or ways of looking at a problem. (which is really what being creative is about anyway).

More on this later. But, for now, lets channel that badassery and Make Shit Happen!

Launching a Custom Leather Video Tutorial Series and other updates

So, I finally (it took like a year) got my crap together and have started pulling together a custom leather video tutorial series that explain how to make a basic leather pouch. And, while its not a very large pouch, the idea is that many of the concepts, skills, and techniques one would need to learn leather making are covered at a basic level.

Stitching an item by hand!

Ideally a person would have at least a pretty good idea how to make a bunch of different things after watching these episodes and using the techniques. I am still editing the other videos (and learning some basic video-editing in the process), but I should be able to drop an episode every week or so.

Additionally, I plan on some basic videos on things like tools, leather dyeing, leather in general, and some other techniques and projects as I figure out what people want to know about. Here is the first episode of the custom leather video tutorial series. This one features some basic about selecting and using leather for a project:

UPDATED: Here is Episode 2 which discusses using a patterns and cutting leather. I cover the basics of using a pattern and some design stuff. I also cover cutting leather and share some tips, techniques and tools that make things easier.

In an other angle, I am considering operating a Patreon or Patreon-like page so that supporters have options rather than just buying items or can support at a level they are more comfortable with. Ideally, a steady stream allows me to focus on the more artistic and fun aspects of my business. More on that after I am done polling my audience to determine if this has enough interest.

I will be just looking to add more content, well, everywhere. More content in my blog, videos, facebook, etc. More items in my etsy shop, exploring additional e-commerce sites (maybe Amazon Hand-made?) as well as some a store on here, as well. I am already collaborating with some folks on content. More on that as it develops.

Lastly, collaboration is something I hope to amp up as well, and working on collaborating with some other entrepreneurs to team up to create awesome products that benefit us both!

Welcome to Dodson Designs Handcrafted Leather blog

Welcome to Dodson Designs’ inaugural post. This blog will be about many things. It will, of course be about the creative handcrafted leather goods we craft and leather in general. We will discuss creation, construction, techniques, and even tutorials. I will share my builds and my process, too. You will see what goes into making our products.

 Handcrafted Leather Vertical Messenger Bag
10 x12 Vertical Messenger Bag

But I will also share the passion that goes into what I do. I love to create things and make people happy from that finished outcome (Nothing beats a great testimonial!). In the end I am an artist and creator first; leather just so happens to be my medium of choice.

You will also discover that I love making not only well crafted, handmade leather bags, but also creative “geeky” items in the steampunk, cosplay and “Renn Faire” genres. Some of my items are just for that other cross genres and can be used every day! First and foremost, I love art that is practical.

Custom Hand-tooled Journal Handcrafted Leather construction
Custom Hand-tooled Journal

I am also going to discuss the business of being a working artist and a veteran. I am often in the position to help and coach others in building their business when business is not their thing. Artisans aren’t always good business people, so I will share articles and such on social media, marketing, and tech that makes the business part a little easier and a little less complicated.

Well, hell, the reality is this blog is going to be a lot of different sh*t. Oh, yeah, I might use some strong language from time to time. I am a veteran and swearing is in our blood. Seriously though. I hope to share knowledge I have gained, promote what I do and the cool shit others make, too. So with that, enjoy! And go make good stuffs!