Artists ~ Jean Cotton ~ Exeter

Artist’s name: Jean Cotton
Shop name: Making Faces Pottery
Other: #makingfacespottery

1. Tell us about your work
My mugs are one of a kind. I create each mug on a pottery wheel an from there, I sculpt the face to the front side. Every mug is unique with a variety of facial expressions and assortment of colorful glazes. Made of sturdy stoneware, they are fired in a kiln and signed on the bottom.

2. Is there a story behind the name of your business?
The name, Making Faces Pottery was the most suitable name I could come up with. Everything I've ever created in clay simply has to have a face. I enjoy coming up with as many different facial expressions for my mugs.

3. How did you come to be a professional artist/crafter/designer?
I have a background as an illustrator and product designer for several giftware and greeting card companies. I discovered pottery years ago and fell in love with it. My 2 dimensional creations had now "come to life" once I discovered sculpting. i've discovered that clay is the perfect medium for me.

4. Where do you draw your inspiration?
My inspiration for my work came about while doing some research on primitive style 19th century face jugs which were created by slaves down south. After trying my hand at it, my mugs sort of evolved from that.

5. What’s your favorite item to create?
I have a lot of fun making these silly looking mugs and especially like to hear back from folks that have purchased them. Some people have even named their mugs.

6. What’s your best seller?
I don't think there's a specific best seller. people like the fact that my mugs will put a smile on your face.

7. How long have you been in Rhode Island?
I've lived in RI for 20 years or so after living in the Boston area.

8. What do you {heart} about Rhode Island?
Rhode Island has a great community of artists. The scenic beauty, especially in South County, provides lots of inspiration.

9. Favorite place to take out-of-towners?
My fav spots are lovely Wickford and Beavertail in Jamestown. These are, by far, the best places to take out of towners to.

10. Any advice for new/wannabe makers?
My advice for anyone starting out as an artist/crafter is to surround yourself with other creative people. Their input and feedback is invaluable. Also, self promotion is half the work. Social media such as FaceBook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc are essential means of spreading the word about your art.


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