Elevate your style in three dimensions with the Bradley Element. Angled slopes mark the hours with a mountainous terrain of smooth, coal-black peaks. The Bradley Element is crafted from highly durable, scratch-resistant ceramic that is coated with PVD plating for extra resilience. The timepiece is finished with a stainless steel mesh band for a look that’s as top-of-the-line as it is down-to-earth.
The Bradley Element is unlike any of the other Bradley models. We sat down with Eone’s Lead Product Designer Nick Gu to discuss the design process and reengineering The Bradley with new materials.
Eone: What was the inspiration behind the new watch face design? Why did you decide to reconfigure the tactile surface?
Nick Gu: The inspiration was based on our goal of integrating the hour markers with the watch surface’s form. Our watch is about tactility and three-dimensionality, so for the new Bradley Element, I wanted to integrate the surface topography with those protruding hour markers, making it even easier to feel the time.
The original Bradley design presents a clear distinction between the surface of the watch face and the marker system — the 12 protruded line segments that indicate the hours. In design, this is known as ‘addition’ — you start with a clean surface and add raised markers onto the surface, creating the abrupt level contrast. The marker system for the original Bradley design is based on how traditional watch dials are set up, with the addition of protruding markers on the clean surface.
But this 3D design explores the potential of Eone’s watch surface. Other watches are limited to two dimensions because they have a flat piece of glass on top. But we have a unique opportunity to exploit the top surface expression because our watches are designed for touch as well as sight. We have the opportunity to radically redefine what a watch should be, even in the watch’s fundamental properties, such as how many dimensions the surface has. It’s very liberating in terms of design. The Bradley Element eliminates the traditional boundary between the watch dial and our sense of touch.
The design process is pretty technical: the hour markers/watch surface integration is made possible by both geometrical tessellation (those triangular shapes) and double curvature surface manipulation (the transition from triangles to the overall circular form).
Eone: Why did you choose ceramics as the primary material for this model? Are there any benefits of ceramic watches?
Nick: Ceramic is a great sculpting material. Used on many sculptures, ceramic can express forms easily, and it allows for intimate control. So this material has been a perfect match for the new Bradley Element design. The ceramic is mixed for 48 hours before forming, and we use advanced and precise technologies to ensure the highest quality. Ceramic is actually highly durable. It’s even more scratch-resistant and corrosion-resistant than stainless steel. It also gives you a warmer feeling (with higher heat capacity) when you touch it, which makes it perfect for a tactile watch.
Eone: The new Bradley Element is coated with PVD plating. Can you explain to our readers what PVD is and what its benefits are?
Nick: PVD adds an extra level of durability. Physical Vapor Deposition is a coating that adds a very strong but extremely thin protective surface for metal materials. This layer allows for much better scratch and corrosion resistance.
Eone: Other than the new tactile design and materials, is there anything else we should know about this new model?
Nick: The weight of the new model is more substantial, which watch aficionados often love. Ceramic plus stainless steel definitely gives you a more solid feeling than our previous models. The Bradley Element is a ‘must have’ for any collection!