A craftsman is a person that practices a craft and aims for very high technical perfection in that craft. Many professional craftsmen in period would work within the guild system.
The term craftsman should not be confused with the term artist although the two are closely related and interchangeable to most people. A craftsman concentrates on the high craft of an object while an artist tries to elevate that object to an art object status. Not all art is well-crafted (such as Leonardo Da Vinci's Last Supper fresco which was well-painted but started falling apart soon after it was completed), and not all well-crafted objects can be called art (such as a well-crafted spoon). With that same logic, not all artists are craftsmen and not all craftsmen are artists.
However, a well-crafted piece of art (such as an inspiring icon that has lasted for over 500 years) can be said to be made by an artist who is also a craftsman.
Examples of crafts:
- Creating paintings, sculpture and frescoes
- Making of jewellery and clothing
- Smithing of armour, weapons, tools and cutlery