Wilson graduated from Texas Tech and is now a design lead at Clayton & Little. He participated in the Land Arts of the American West studio and spent several years in Central America, where he ran an off-the-grid camp in Panama and worked as a designer at Vida Landscape Architects + Planners in Costa Rica. Wilson also participated in the Immersion Workshop in Vermont with Rick Joy, Frida Escobedo, and John Pawson.
There’s no undo or delete with the type of work I do:
Any little slip-up only warrants a redo.
I slow down and find my focus, forget those other distractions:
No double-tasking, surfing the web on fancy devices or contraptions.
The clank of my ruler, the scratch of my pen:
A rhythm that I enjoy again and again.
Those computers — so fancy! Boy, they’re just neat!
They’ve got little worlds in them. People think they’re a treat.
But I don’t trust tools that make work so speedy;
With three people on them, computers, they’re so needy!
So I stay put at my desk, with my ruler, straight edge, and pen.
I draw my slow lines one at a time, measure twice, then again.
I can’t help but wonder who’s smarter than who:
That fancy program that’s beeping, or that person on YouTube.
No YouTube over here; I’m the jack of my trade.
I’m in charge of what’s drawn, or what’s rendered, or made.
The joke may be on me, as I’m buried in trace.
I can’t find my pen; things are all over the place!
But I don’t want to be neat, tidy, put-together;
This mess is my creation, my druthers, my splendor!
No way in the world would I change what I do;
I love drawing and sketching and thinking things through.
I wish more people would join me, in this old analog art;
They might just learn something to set them apart!
They might learn a little bit more — you know the ins and the outs,
A new way of thinking, to alleviate their doubts —
Doubts of how things work, what direction to steer,
How things stack, and align, what goes here, what goes there.
’Til then I’ll make sure to leave them some space,
To join in my craft, one I hope they’ll embrace.
It might be fun to draw things out, to give that mouse a break,
Set a rhythm, make your pen scratch, give your ruler a shake.
Who knows? You may find your freedom, hiding in these simple tools,
Free from programs, free from procedures, and all those silly rules.
And the next time you’ve got an idea, you’ll go ahead and draw it out,
Leaving others wonderin’, “Dang! How’d they figure that out?!”