I’ve been tasked with creating 10 mugs and have managed to produce a single worthy piece. I most likely could have skated by with the 3 I trashed, but I’d like to produce 10 great mugs. That’s 10 less Christmas gifts I have to purchase. I’ve been throwing so far, but I’m going to attempt a few hand built forms. If they don’t go my way then I’ll get back on the wheel. I’m interested in making a variety of designs for different purposes. I’d like to create bottom heavy and narrow opening mugs for travel. I also want to explore making decorative mugs with a narrow foot. I figure that those will be my extremes and I’ll try to bridge the gap with hybrids. The 1st I’m satisfied with is a mean.
I’m fairly satisfied with my progress this week. I’m glad this current project assignment has afforded me the wiggle room to make teapots. I’ve watched many video tutorials on creating the components needed to assemble a functional teapot. I’ve learned that galleries become more difficult to create as the height and width of the vessel becomes larger. Taller and wider means more fragile and less stable. So, I’ve managed a small, Japanese style, teapot. I need to throw 4 small and simple tea cups to complete the set, and I’m confident that it will be a successful build. The pot has all the aesthetics needed for a table piece. If I can produce at least 4 small cups to compliment the pot, I’ll be very satisfied with my first attempt.
This week has been both challenging and rewarding. My challenge is to throw and assemble 10 chalices, or goblets if you like. I’ve only managed 3 thus far, however they are yet to be assembled. I’ve decided to postpone making more until after I’ve assembled these 3, as I’m sure I will fuck something up and learn from such mistakes. The rewarding part of week 4, apart from Brian’s amazing and stimulating instruction, stems from the joy I’m given by making gifts for my friends. One is for the mother of my childhood friend. She reached out to me wanting a yarn bowl. She told me she could buy one from a local craft shop, but, after seeing my work, insisted that she wanted one from me. Also, I’m proud to have made gifts for my friends departing for their home countries in the very near future. 2 of which are forms I’m familiar with, bowl and mug. The third is a form I’ve never attempted which is a mate. As in, Yerba mate. A very small vessel for drinking intermittent amounts of Yerba is a very challenging form for gorilla hands. I’d like to believe that I managed well. I’ll report their reactions next week.
I’m satisfied with my progress this week. I managed to create 10 unique mugs. There is a great variety in size and shape displayed in the collection. I’m worried the teacup may have too thin a handle to withstand glaze firing, but we’ll see. I’m very satisfied with the largest mug. It has already received offers from those who drink far too much coffee. I’ve learned that I need to pay more attention to the size relationship between mug and handle. Also, I need to better gauge the area within the handle needed for fingers. I have very large hands and I’d do better to remember that the average person does not. Furthermore, I need to leave myself a thicker clay body at the bottom end of my handles. A few of them became very thin at the base connection. Otherwise, I think I’m looking at a promising batch of vessels made for hot beverages.
I’ve managed to create 3 more completed forms that are currently in the green state. I feel that my handle connection sites are gaining a smooth transition from handle to pot. I plan on attaching a few handles without a smooth transition and allow for a more separated appearance the form. I’d also like to make a large shallow mug that could be used for soups or cereal, possible even with 2 handles. I recognize that I need to pay closer attention the the foot width as one of my mugs may end up being a bit top heavy probably needed a wider base for stability. Overall I think I’m off to a good start and I’m excited to have 10 new mugs.