Every potter should be able to make mugs, and good ones. It’s so nice to hear a customer tell me that the mug I made is their favorite and that they use it every day. Also, they are the gateway drug to more hand crafted items, especially pottery. I can’t tell you how often I’ve sold a mug to someone who comes to me later and buys a casserole, a vase, or even more mugs. Mugs introduce people to the potter’s craft. They use and enjoy the mug and realize that they would like more handmade pottery in their lives or that a similar mug would make a great gift.
Mugs are relatively inexpensive and thus accessible for the customer. That also means that I can’t afford to spend a month working on one mug that will sell for $25. I have to be able to make a well crafted and beautiful mug fairly quickly. This isn’t about shortcuts or settling, it’s about competencies and practice. It’s also about knowing when to throw a piece into the scrap bucket. It’s about balance.
Sometimes we want to create a beautiful and elaborate work of museum quality art, sometimes we want to create a beautiful mug to bring pottery into people’s lives.
Check out the gallery page - Future Relics Gallery by Lori Buff