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QotW: What (in a functional piece) elicits "I love this" for you?

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Hulk recently asked in the QotW pool: What (in a functional piece) elicits "I love this" for you?

Babs replied in the same pool:

Its feel in my hand .

Its "balance" when in use.

How it looks to my eye.

How it fits in my cupboard.

And

Its functionality

Not taking time to prioritize but bottom one is essential but then....

I really don't know as I could improve on her answer, other than to add. . . I often try to improve on the functionality of pieces.  As an example my honey jars with the built in honey spoon is an adaptation to keep bugs out of the honey when outside on the deck or elsewhere. I went through several variations before I came up with one that worked well, and was not too great of a time addition to the project. In the end when dealing with this I have to ask was the improvement worth the effort?

Asking once again: What (in a functional piece) elicits "I love this" for you?

 

best,

Pres

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Well, I have to go with "all of the above", as a baseline. Yet those attributes alone won't do it for me as much as when a piece elicits  an inadvertent little internal  gasp...because it's just so gorgeous.  Just don't ask me to define my ideas of gorgeous (or lucious, or sweet, or way cool, etc.). Essentially I just "know it when I see it".  Loving a piece covers a lot of territory, from craftsmanship to color to design, to form to function to whether it can earn its keep, and so much more.  For me it's intuitive, or at times even highly counter-intuitive, evoking  a kind of primal or visceral reaction--or response-- (those not being the same thing)  to the piece. I guess it's a vibe, or an energy, or a perception of something being shared, that just sparks something and connects me to the piece, and sometimes, at least peripherally, with the maker.  

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Its a blend of form and function that appeals to the user . Say in a mug the handle feels right and the form feels right as well as the color is good for that user.Everyone has a different value for this but you know when it all lines up for you. The bowl looks like it should weight as much as it does and the way it feels and works makes it just right.The foot looks and feels right and the balance is great between these aspects .

Edited by Mark C.

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On 11/1/2019 at 8:34 AM, Pres said:

Hulk recently asked in the QotW pool: What (in a functional piece) elicits "I love this" for you?

Babs replied in the same pool:

Its feel in my hand .

Its "balance" when in use.

How it looks to my eye.

How it fits in my cupboard.

And

Its functionality

Not taking time to prioritize but bottom one is essential but then....

I really don't know as I could improve on her answer, other than to add. . . I often try to improve on the functionality of pieces.  As an example my honey jars with the built in honey spoon is an adaptation to keep bugs out of the honey when outside on the deck or elsewhere. I went through several variations before I came up with one that worked well, and was not too great of a time addition to the project. In the end when dealing with this I have to ask was the improvement worth the effort?

Asking once again: What (in a functional piece) elicits "I love this" for you?

 

best,

Pres

I sure like all these answers but the one question that pops into my head when reading the honey jar story is : did you find the modification worth the effort? If so, then I would say it now is acceptable to your standard.

Folks who master a craft often produce fine precise things almost impossible to recreate by machine. Not taking away from handmade, but many things handmade are crazy precise as  a function of mad skill and a personal standard of excellence.

so In the end, did the built in spoon enhance functionality to your personal satisfaction?

I think I like both the randomness as well as skilled  intentional precision.

Edited by Bill Kielb

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2 hours ago, Bill Kielb said:

I sure like all these answers but the one question that pops into my head when reading the honey jar story is : did you find the modification worth the effort? If so, then I would say it now is acceptable to your standard.

Folks who master a craft often produce fine precise things almost impossible to recreate by machine. Not taking away from handmade, but many things handmade are crazy precise as  a function of mad skill and a personal standard of excellence.

so In the end, did the built in spoon enhance functionality to your personal satisfaction?

I think I like both the randomness as well as skilled  intentional precision.

Bill, in answer to your query, when I said lots of variation, with different efforts, this took years with gestation time in between, thinking about what would work better. The last one are better, and once you understand the process, and can throw consistently these little thing off the hump, making 20 at a shot is not difficult or majorly time consuming. They certainly have sold well.

 

best,

Pres

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On 11/8/2019 at 10:41 PM, Pres said:

Bill, in answer to your query, when I said lots of variation, with different efforts, this took years with gestation time in between, thinking about what would work better. The last one are better, and once you understand the process, and can throw consistently these little thing off the hump, making 20 at a shot is not difficult or majorly time consuming. They certainly have sold well.

 

best,

Pres

Sounds like that is your new personal standard. You continued to think about it and intentionally improved it. Good for you, credit deserved -  selling well or not.

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Pres, 

first what makes me think "I love this" is usually a good comfortable handle and the texture of a glaze. BUT your comment about keeping bugs out o honey reminded me of a honey pot I saw in a old museum in Pontevedra, Spain. There was a ridge in the shoulder of the pot for water creating a mote . It kept ants out o the honey because they wouldn't cross the water barrier. I thought it was brilliant. I loved the ingenuity of the pot.

Marcia

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First, overall impression, "gestalt" - shape, colours, texture, design; from there, feel, utility. 

For my own work, still experiencing the Frankenstein effect, where love and awe for the "monster" I've created when it first breathes fades to "what have I done?" It's getting better, however, as more are recognized as such and tossed to the recycle pile before bisque fire.

On the other hand - and the reason for the question - have found that some less positive first impressions will fade with familiarity through handling and use.

What elicits "I love this" has evolved, and will likely continue to change; I'll try to keep an open mind!

I like to see other's work, and as possible, handle as well.

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It's kind of strange I like to see the balance and attention to design in the piece but I like to feel the imperfections in a hand made pot.  When you pick up a factory made utility bowl it doesn't evoke any feelings  it is so dead feeling you could easily toss it aside and let it shatter on the floor.   When you pick up a handmade bowl  you can feel the energy.  you pour over it examining every nook and cranny and setting it down ever so gently.    Denice

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The "I love this" pieces are few and far between for me, but for me to love it, it's the feeling I get when it comes out of the kiln and it's exactly what I imagined, all of it, shape, glaze, nice looking and well-made and the feeling that that's what makes it all worthwhile, well, that and the fact that I love clay and can't be without it for too long.   I'm strictly a hand builder utilizing the coil method and lately ,because I'm experimenting with marbled clay,  slab building.  I also have to say , for myself, I like organic shapes and what I make are mostly decorative which is also a form of functionality.   I push the clay to its limits and often beyond to see how far I can take it, but at 76, I've begun slowing down.  I  never sold a lot as that wasn't my desire but I tried it for 2 years to see if anyone would buy what I made, and to my surprise, they did, and that was enough for me.  So, if it's just a soso piece, I give it to goodwill, if its acceptable in my eyes, I may gift it to someone, but if  it's really special and makes me smile, I keep it and my family will eventually have some  nice pieces made by me.  I don't know about anyone else, but when it happens, I smile, get on my good knee, and bow to the kiln goddess!

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