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Published on October 4th, 2011 | by Sam


Inspiration in Hand

Inspiration in hand

Picture your car for a minute. What kind of door handle does it have? What about your other car (if you have two)? Your neighbors? You probably don’t really remember that well other than the last one you used. I was driving to the kids’ school the other day and looked at the car next to us and saw the handle. It was one of those where you push in the the thumb. “Man that’s really a strange design,” I thought. “Why would they make it like that?” So then I thought about our car door opener. And both were different from the car in front of us. What about the person turning? Different too! As I drove I looked around and noticed there are even variations in same makes and models! So here is something that every car has to have, but the variations are endless. Now another component of these is its functionality-namely it opens a door, yet designers are still creative with the look, feel, and operation. I wonder if there is a job description for “Car door handle designer”? I even found a website with pictures of hundreds of door handles! The degree of creativity happening all around us with car door handles is staggering! When we take the ‘car-door-designers’ lead we can take a position of being extremely creative with a medium that already has been designed to the wits’ end. What can you do with a medium that has already been (almost) exhausted, like the blues, or say a 2 chord jam, or any serial compositional technique? Or maybe a different way to look at it is when you’re in a creative rut. What would the car-door-handle designer do in this situation?? It doesn’t stop there, what about the difference between all the trees in nature, or hairstyles, or windows, or lampshades, or carpets… It’s all around us.


What I imagine a ‘Car Door Handle’-designer’s resume’s key projects may look like:

1998-Designed the door handle to the Chevrolet Tahoe

1999-Designed the door handle to the Honda Civic

2000-Designed the door handle to the Jeep Cherokee

2001-Designed the door handle to the Dodge Caravan

2002-Designed the door handle to the Subaru Outback

2003-Designed the door handle to the Toyota Prius

2004-Designed the door handle to the Ford Focus

2005-Designed the door handle to the Honda Element

2006-Designed the door handle to the Chrysler Town and Country

2007-Designed the door handle to the Nissan Cube

2008-Designed the door handle to the Pontiac Vibe

2009-Designed the door handle to the Subaru Outback

2010-Designed the door handle to the Chevrolet HHR

2011-Designed the door handle to the Honda Civic

Interesting huh? Next time you’re out look at the door handles on all the cars out there. Who designed all of these? Pretty creative, considering the medium huh?

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