BONNERS FERRY — Boundary County Library Director, Craig Anderson, has ideas that begin like small ripples in a pond. As he implements them, those small ripples spread outward as the idea gains momentum. The latest project is already spreading through the community, although it is still in the fledgling stages.
“I came up with it because I wanted to find a way to attract people into our nonfiction area where all the how-to books are,” said Anderson. “That is really how this started.”
There is a large dark wall that runs along over the shelves of books that Anderson wanted to do something with. The idea was to create a Maker Wall, celebrating the creativity in people, the desire to “make” something, that Anderson believes that we all have in common.
“It is an idea that has been kicking around in my head for a while,” said Anderson. “So I am getting it off the ground and more and more people are wanting to take part in it, wanting to take pictures and send them to me, or have me take pictures of them.”
The project will be a photo montage, both on the wall in the library and also online on their website. The photos will feature people and their projects.
“It is going to be a wall full of people who make things,” said Anderson. “It doesn’t matter what side of what fence you are on — we are more alike than we are different, because we all have this desire to create, to make. The idea is, when the people in the community see each other, we will value each other.”
Anderson thought that people would visit the nonfiction section if there was a photo of themselves on the wall. Then he hoped they would see other people’s pictures and their creative projects that they had done or were working on, and maybe be inspired to create their own versions or to learn more.
“The more I thought about it, the more it snowballed,” said Anderson. “Just snowballed and snowballed and snowballed. As it turns out, pretty much everybody makes something.”
Gini Woodward is among the first to be part of the Maker Wall project.
“When I have fibers, fabric, or paints in my hands, I am filled with comfort and joy to share with others,” said Woodward for her Maker statement.
Anderson’s small ripple has spread. While attending the Idaho Libraries’ Futures Camp in Caldwell, Idaho, he spoke about his Maker Wall idea during a question and answer period. He was approached by someone that wanted to know more about the idea, only to find later that person was part of the Royal Library of Denmark, and that he was interested in using the idea in his library.
“We are going to see how many people we can get on this thing. It is going to be awesome, a celebration of the community and all the people in it, because everybody makes something,” said Anderson.
The Boundary County Library will be represented at the upcoming fair, and Anderson hopes to reach out to people while he is there, since there will be many exhibits featuring “made” items, but Anderson insists that people do not need to be artists to be a part of the Maker Wall.
“One person said to me, all I can make is a mess. I said no way — you are making a difference,” he said. “Some things aren’t as physical as others, but they are huge, so there is room for everybody in this boat.”
“No matter where you come from or what you do, we all have this in common,” said Anderson. “We all have this desire to create. Let’s celebrate that. That is all we have to do. It’s that simple.”
People interested in being a part of the Maker Wall or learn more about it are encouraged to stop by the library, visit them at the fair, or go to their website, www.boundarycountylibrary.com.
Anderson hopes to start putting the project up shortly after the fair, but it will be ongoing and ever growing — ripples in a pond.
“Putting the unity into community,” said Anderson.