Get a Grip on Yourself!

I decided it was time to start restocking my mug collection.  Mugs are definitely a staple of pottery, but I don’t make a lot of time to throw them.  I think I stress myself out when making them.  I’m not sure why – I enjoy throwing them, making the handles, and the finished product.  I think it is the actual attachment of the handle to the body that makes me tense – this is the step that gives the mug it’s soul.  In the end, they usually all turn out great (except when I have a case of the Mondays!), so the tension was for naught.

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This time I started with a collection of more tradition styled mugs, with an S-shape and pulled handles.  I am very happy with how these turned out and how they feel in my hand.

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I also experimented with some more non-tradition styled handles, including some slab handles.  Once I tried these ‘grips’ I immediately fell in love with them.  They feel super comfortable, and look great on different types of mugs.  I think I will glaze a couple of these soon during a test firing, just to see how they glaze and how they actually work for use.

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My favorite part of pottery and trying something you haven’t done before, either through experimentation or happy accidents.  I don’t do a very good job of trying to throw repetitive forms – I am constantly trying to tweak and change my throwing shapes.  It feels great to have something work out like this!  Now, how can I change this to make it better…

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Winter Wonderland

Well, we’ve gotten a series of snowfalls the past few days, which convinced me to throw some of the white clay I had lying around.  I had a couple boxes of Hi-Fire White stoneware from Continental Clay left that I decided to use up.  This is probably my favorite clay right now – if feels great while throwing, and turns a wonderful white once fired.  As I use up the large collection of red clay I have (Mid-Fire Red from CC), I think I will transition over to the white. 

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The last pieces I made with the white clay was some faceted bowls.  I always enjoy making faceted bowls – it tends to be one of the more relaxing things I make.  I like using the white clay for these bowls, as some of my glazes break nicely over the piece. 

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This winter has been a busy one, but luckily I’ve been finding quite a bit of time to work on the wheel.  My plan is to continue making pieces until mid-March.  Then I will transition to glazing/firing my pieces, so that I can be done with everything before the busiest season of landscape design hits.