Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Gotcha!

One of my favourite mugs was made by Basil the Jiggerman at Medalta in my home town of Medicine Hat, Alberta.  I love the thickness of the cup, it's thick rim and most especially it's one finger handle.
My dear friend Maureen Ross commented on yesterdays blog post "We always felt you should be able to hold a mug with your eyes shut." Maureen and her fine husband Don made pots for the mass market. I don't! If you write a lullaby and people remember the words then it wasn't a very successful lullaby was it? You didn't put them to sleep! If you make cups that people hold with their eyes shut then what kind of cup have you made?  I like to make cups that demand that you look at them. It is often why I undulate the rim. Pick the wrong spot and you are going to pour hot tea on yourself.
I started out today to make Basil's cup and try to please all and then I read Carter Gillies Blog and then I rewatched Pete Pinnells U-tube Thoughts On Cups https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WChFMMzLHVs and I just couldn't help adding an




element to the cup that would demand attention. A roughness on the handle that yes even an unsighted person could appreciate by it's tactility. A sighted person wouldn't close their eyes but they might scratch their head and say "What the hell was he thinking? Gotcha!!! That's all I was trying to do was to make you look and think.

1 comment:

Maureen Ross said...

Dear Tony,
So one of your favourite mugs is, as I see it in the picture, a smooth-rimmed, smooth-handled one from Medalta. I'd be willing to bet that you can close your eyes and drink from it as well.
Mugs need to have both a visual and a tactile appeal. Dipped rims and rough handles do not enhance, at least for me, the enjoyment of my morning coffee. Visual appeal has a very important place and probably elicits the initial response from the customer, but tactile appeal should not be ignored, hence our belief that a mug should be comfortable for the customer to hold with their eyes closed.
Having your eyes closed forces you to access the tactile qualities. If the response is negative the customer is inclined to walk away. When we were selling pots at a Trade Show we always gave a new customer either a mug or a beer stein to hold while they made their decision. Worked every time and we sold a lot of bowls, plates and accessory pieces because the customer liked the mug. Smooth rim and easy handle just like Medalta.