Watch these underrated maker competition shows – you won't regret it
I can bet a hefty sum of money that you would have spent some of the last 18 months watching trashy TV, or spending more time trying to decide what to watch on Netflix, versus actually watching anything.
So you took to Google, searching high and low for a well-reviewed show.
The shows below all have less than desirable ratings online – and I think they deserve a chunk of your time.
Many TV critiques judge the production, the presenting, and the commercial value of a show. Those factors are of course important, but these shows have one thing in common that makes them stand out from other programmes: they all showcase some incredible artwork, created with love and passion by some truly talented artists.
That in itself is enough to make you turn a blind eye towards the reviews that complain of predictability and bad production.
Ellen's Design Challenge
'Furniture designers receive the chance to compete in designing furniture with a twist.'
This unique design competition show stopped airing in 2016, unfortunately, partly due to flopped ratings. But fear not, fellow design lovers: the show is back, sort of, as Ellen's Next Great Designer.
Seven furniture designers were selected to participate in challenges from the comfort of their workshops, shipping their designs to Los Angeles. There, the judges decide which designer should be eliminated, bringing the others closer to winning the $100k prize.
These designers are no amateurs; many have designed furniture for world leaders and big celebrity names, and are judged harshly by some of the biggest names in the industry. Scott Foley hosts, alongside fellow judges Brigette Romanek and Fernando Mastrangelo.
All That Glitters
For those of you who, like me, have a thing for sparkles in the form of jewellery, tune in to this BBC show.
'Eight talented jewellers bring the bling and aim for a glittering career as Katherine Ryan searches for Britain's next jewellery star.'
It's not often that we jewellers have the opportunity to shine on TV, and the fact that this competition is based out of a workshop in Birmingham's Jewellery Quarter makes it all the more worthwhile.
The jewellers have to create 'bestselling' pieces, working with the likes of gold and glittery gemstones, and the best part? The competition is open to both professional and amateur jewellers, so the Next Big Thing could very well be discovered on this show.
They should receive praise just for the puns in their official description, don't you think?
Another one for the pun lovers, this reality show 'features glassblowers from around the world competing to be the best.'
Challenges included creating a piece of art that reflects who they are, using old photos from their past, and creating glassy robot prototypes which will 'perform' chores. The prize package was the equivalent of $60k.
Season 2 premiered in January this year, with Katherine Gray, a highly experienced Canadian glass artist and associate professor at California State University, being the chief judge.
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Give the artists a chance by tuning into these shows, and check out their work on their social channels. At worst, you'll have managed to pass the time with a TV show you haven't already seen too many times.
At best, you'll have discovered new creators, and maybe even a new passion for their art.