This weekend I will be sanding by hand 8 of 31 maple tiles for a new flooring idea. I enjoy the process of sanding wood by hand as it allows the mind time to work through other ideas and thoughts, whilst physically working towards a beautiful finished piece. While mechanical sanding is a lot quicker and very useful for shaping and precision lines etc I have not been able to get the organic shapes I want only with a machine. I also love the connection that the hand work offers me. As someone who loves the sensory stimulation gained by touching and feeling materials, the tactility of handwork like this offers immense satisfaction. I like the way my hands and arms feel tired after this work and the occasional blisters! I feel that it also offers me a small insight into the times when machines weren't so readily available, if at all for this kind of work and for the effort that went into producing a fine finish on old furnitures etc.
The tiles in the picture are maple, although they are not the tiles I will be working on this weekend.