Today, with the sophistication of computer aided manufacturing the traditional methods of creating ornamental woodwork can seem obsolete. In many cases that may well be true, but there will always be a place for the work of human hands.
There is a difference in the final result of machine work and hand work and while not every observer can appreciate that difference, many do. I think of it like seeing a human face and the face of a mannequin. One has life, one doesn't.
It might seem that wood carving is about the skill of using carving tools, and it is, but just as important is the skill to sharpen them. They both take many hours, if not years of practice, and the guidance of a master along the way is essential.
Most important of all though, is knowing how to see the subject of the work. Understanding the elements of a design should be the starting point for any carving.