France | Brittany

The shoemaker

The shoemaker made wooden clogs — a job that was generally poorly paid, even though it called for great skill. The shoemaker might live directly in the forest or have a small workshop in the village. After selecting the wood he would use, the shoemaker would then polish the piece, outline the shape of the clog, cut away the excess and start carving. When the piece attained its final form, the shoemaker might decorate it with nails and leather, or leave this task to his customers, who would tweak the shoes to their liking.

[peinture #00179]
Clog Maker
The man uses a knife to shape the outside of the clog. The tool is attached to the workbench with a ring on one side. A fire burns in the hearth in the background.
France, Brittany, Ille-et-Vilaine, near Saint-Aubin-du-Cormier, near Fougères
Study, gouache, on white paper
Credit: Frédéric Back
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