I have been lucky enough to apprentice with Clary Illian, one of the best functional potters in the nation. Her focus on ease of function made a huge impact. A discovery in graduate school, however, turned my focus towards 'awareness of function'. I found that I pay more attention to an object if it's use requires contemplation. Although the beautifully functional mug with the handle that springs effortlessly from the form is something I will always chase, my professional focus has been on the object that requires some navigation. These are some of my favorite drinking vessels.