How to Make a Textured Square Mug on the Potters Wheel


Mugs are one of my favorite ceramic forms to make (and use) and seem to be about all I make lately. I got lots of inspiration for new mug forms at last week’s NCECA (National Conference on Education for the Ceramic Arts) Conference and can’t wait to get back into the studio to play around.

For those of you out there who like mugs as much as I do, or those who weren’t able to attend NCECA, I thought I would share a fun little mug-making video today. In this quick clip, an excerpt from his video Altered Forms with Textured Surfaces, you’ll learn how Bill Wilkey makes his sweet altered and textured mugs on the potters wheel. –Jennifer Harnetty, editor.

PS. Bill covers the entire mug making process in detail from start to finish on the full-length DVD!



This clip was excerpted from Altered Forms with Textured Surfaces, which is available in the Ceramic Arts Daily Shop!

To learn more about Bill Wilkey or to see more image of his work, please visit

  • I liked it quite a it. Much better than watching what you already know at real time. And if you don’t like the music, turn off your sound. Easy to do.

  • Sure, the sound can be turned off, but the video is too speeded up to be of much use: no chance at all to absorb anything that’s being done with the clay. If this is the style of the actual video, I certainly won’t be buying it. If it was just done this way to make a clip, I found it neither helpful as a learning tool nor attractive (or helpful) as a way to decide whether to buy the video.

  • I agree with Phil and Shelly. Much too fast video, with expectations that the audience will also read the sub-titles and relate the text to the video content. Each facet of the clip was helpful on its own (video part and text/sub-title part), and I may have learned a new technique. Thank you.

  • I liked the video. Quick and simple, with a great end result. It sounds like the video is full length. Thanks Jennifer and Bill! Very inspiring!

  • Maybe just a bit slower so the technique wasn’t missed while the subtitles were read. Had to turn the sound off myself.

  • Interesting technique, but there was something going on with the rim of the mug that was not addressed in the video. It looked like the inside of the rim was texured with the rasp too. That narrow rasp that he used on the bottom of the pot looks neat, I’m going to get one of those. I turned off the music & watched it twice, got what I needed.

  • I write in response to the negative comments to this video. The techniques demonstrated here by Bill Wilkey are wonderfully useful yet self explanatory once viewed. It seems to me there is nothing here that requires greater detail for either beginners or skilled potters.Slow detailed videos are greatly appreciated but in this case the style seems perfectly suited to the subject. Thanks to Bill and all the artists who contribute greatly appreciated and valuable information at this site.

  • Totally agree with you Shelly. I also was wondering if the video is like this too. Won’t be buying it. Where’s the fire slow down all potters aren’t at the master level.

  • I agree with a number of the positive and negative views expressed regarding the “rapid video” clip. I think it is fine as a quick “start to finish” teaser/trailer, which I believe was the intension. But I also value a true “video clip” segment from the actual video, which If I recall correctly, is how they labelled this video. Personally, I would like to see both. Make both available and label them correctly, then everyone can be happy.

  • Me too, it was so nice to not have to sit through things I do a thousand times a week or try to guess where to fast forward. The music was fun! Great tutorial!

  • I really appreciated the speed, it was so nice to not have to sit through things I do a thousand times a week or try to guess where to fast forward. I love this website for ideas that I can put my own twist on and this is definitely one I’ll incorporate. The music was fun! Great tutorial!

  • I loved the pace of the video and the music. It was so refreshing after watching some videos where it takes five minutes to center the clay. Those I usually fast forward until something worth watching is available.

  • I so like Bill’s forms…tried a covered jar after his PMI article…even bought a round rasp! Was looking for a video on casserole lids today, but sure liked this video…will try one this afternoon…thanks!

  • WAY too fast to apply anything seen. Please make demos real time with camera clise ups on the hands not far away on artist. Thank you for valuable and generous education. Close ups and slower speed appreciated. Life is too fast already.

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