Today we started workshops. I chose woodcarving, and the top portion of the picture above is the design I chose. It is the white conch, which is one of the Eight Auspicious symbols; the first designs students learn to make. The white conch symbolizes the deep, far-reaching and melodious sound of the Dharma teachings, which being appropriate to different natures, predispositions, and aspirations of disciples, awakens them from a deep slumber of ignorance and urges them to accomplish their own and other’s welfare.
Tibetan Wood Carving is a tradition dating back to the 7th century. They utilize iconic motifs, following standard representation (white conch). It is not a religious art, but popular motifs used have religious significance. The most common symbols are Tashi Targye, or the Eight Auspicious symbols. It is taught through observation, so the student watches as the Master carver works, and then copies what he does.
Later that day we attended the Hill Hacks Unconference. The concept was odd to me at first, technolgy in the woods. There were musicians there as well as a videographer, Malik, who was filming a documentary to raise awareness about this event. Rebecca and Chris gave talks, and I learned a lot about type and things related to text that I didn’t even know existed. The talk Chris gave was about his process which I thoroughly enjoyed as it is something I am giving more thought to in my own work as well.