What is more useful or simple than a mug. A vessel to hold hot beverages with a handle so as not to over-heat the fingertips. Making handles with mugs has left me with a new appreciation for the art and skill required to make such a useful piece of pottery.
A mug can say much about its owner too. I mean, after all, don’t each of us have a favourite cup we reach for, whether at home or at work? Something about the shape, size, colour and texture of a mug speaks to us, and to my mind, a hot drink sipped from a well-appointed vessel appropriate to the beverage just tastes better.
Here then, are my first handled mugs made of earthenware at the Gardiner Museum. Glazes are all Spectrum Low fire cone 05-04 glaze. These mugs were all thrown on the wheel. When leather hard, the bases were trimmed and pulled handles were applied and embellishments added.
Fig. 1. Peachy Mug, belly shape, size small.
A note about Phoenix Red glaze: I have issues with this colour. It has not looked even remotely like the Spectrum tile sample. Instead of a stain finished deep red flecked with black, it seems to fire rather as a pale weather-beaten red-orange that is flat with sandy black flecks that are rough and unpleasant. To correct the textural issue, I added a nice shiny and smooth glaze, Nectarine, overtop and it has smoothed out all of the Phoenix Red’s stubble.
First Glaze firing:
Inside: Nectarine, poured application
Outside: Phoenix Red 2x, Nectarine 1x
Second Glaze firing:
Inside: additional layer of Nectarine to add depth and even out the colour
Outside: no additional glaze.
Fig.1. Peachy mug. Belly shape, smooth handle, Ganesha stamp.
Fig. 2. Prairie Grass mug.
The satin texture of this mug, subtle colour shadings and textural interest all remind me of prairie grasslands.
Inside: Old Copper 1x, Light Grey
Outside: Old Copper, Stardust, Iceberg lightly brushed, Midnight sky sprays to mirror the grassy etching.
Prairie Grass mug. Soft shades of blues and greens on an etched surface reminiscent of prairie grasslands.
Fig. 2. Prairie Grass Mug, inside.
Fig. 3. Midnight Sky Mug
Mid-size mug with a thicker lip, rolled and folded the rim on the wheel.
Sakura flower on the base of the handle.
Inside: Old Copper, Iceberg,
Outside: Midnight Sky, Old Copper, Iceberg, one coat of each,
Teal was then sprinkled over the entire surface, inside and out, with a stiff brush.
Midnight wide rim mug with sakura blossom.
Midnight Sky mug detail of handle showing the Sakura Flower stamp detail.
Fig. 3. Little Up-belly Mug. Shades of blues and greens
Multiple glaze firings for this one.
First Glaze Firing:
Inside: Stardust 1x, Iceberg pour, spots of Turquoise
Outside: Green Bean 1x, Blue Crackle 1x , Iceberg fan brushed
Second Glaze Firing:
Outside: Lime, Denim
More Iceberg and Evening Shadow along the rim.
Fig. 3. LittleUpBellyMug. Side view.
Fig. 3a. LittleUpBellyMug.ganesh stamp detail on the handle. Note the pretty waterfall blending of the glaze colours on the handle! Colour is true in this photograph.
Fig. 3b. LittleUpBelly.mug. Interior detail. The Iceberg pools beautifully at the base. Ombre effect along the side walls beginning at the stardust shaded rim. Colours are true in this photograph.
Fig. 4, Medium Belly Mug with Hazelnut Rim
Inside: Polished Armour 3x
Outside: Gunmetal 1x, Tarnished Silver 1x, Old Copper lightly applied
Fig. 4. Medium mug with hazelnut edge.
Fig. 5. Blackened Green, Classic Mug
Simple clean lines, softened rim, pulled handle, Ganesha stamp at the base of the handle, and deep shades of blackened green.
Inside: Gunmetal, Denim
Outside: Gunmetal, Franciscan Grey
Rim: Leather, tarnished silver
Fig. 5. Medium sized mug in blackened green with Ganesha stamp on handle.
Fig. 5a. Blackened Green, .classic mug interior. Pool of Denim blue at the bottom of the mug.
I hope that you enjoy these photos and that the glaze notes may assist you in your own pottery adventures!
Until next time, live with joy!