Mugshots . . .

Sometimes, I actually do the things I suggest to you, and this one turned out to be really fun . . .

My art journals are very special because they are “ME” art.

As a person whose has no day job outside of art, I make most of my art for my gallery – original watercolors, fused glass, and sterling jewelry.

A girl’s gotta pay the mortgage and feed the furkids.

But in the morning, with coffee, in the greenhouse or garden, I paint for me – whatever fun thing comes to mind and mostly chronicling my strange but delicious life.

In the evening, with wine, in the greenhouse or garden, I paint for me.

In my last post, I suggested it would be fun to paint a collection in your journal, and I thought about my coffee mug collection.

I thought about my coffee mug collection, because it falls on my head when I open that cupboard every morning. We have a three shelf cupboard that is so full of mugs, that some are actually shoved in there sideways – on top of the others. (C’mon, somebody else has done this, right?)

It falls on Mark’s head too, and is a bone of contention.

“You have to do something about that,” says he on a regular basis.

“OK,” says me in response, “I’ll start with throwing away the Pontiac GTO and Chevy mugs, and the one with the lovely hand-painted cowboy hat and lasso.”

The conversation usually ends there.

Anyway, the other morning, I took three mugs out, while filling the ONE mug I actually drink my coffee out of with my other hand.

My dear husband happened to be standing there holding the ONE mug he actually uses, and watching me.

“Need a BIG caffeine fix this morning?” he asks.

“No, I’m going to paint them,” I say.

“I actually like the color of those two as they are,” he says. “The other one could be more exciting, I guess.”

“Right,” I say, and proceed to carry the four mugs to the greenhouse..

What made the mug project so much fun was not just the baffling Mark part. I do that quite regularly.

It was the mindfulness and the memories that came up.

I really LOOKED at the shapes and colors because you have to do that to paint something, and as I looked, all kinds of backstory came to me about each one.

I started painting the first one, and really got into trying to make it look like itself. Then I wrote its story.

It was part of a set that was gifted to me in the 90’s for my first townhouse when I moved to Santa Fe. I think I remember which friend, but I might be wrong. I haven’t thought of her for awhile. I wonder how she’s doing.

On to number two, one of eight mugs in the dinner set I still use today. I remember two other friends I have not seen in years. – one of those couples who ALWAYS knew the latest thing and wanted to take you there. The Price Club (not yet Costco then) had just opened in Redwood City, CA. You had to own a small business or belong to certain credit unions to join. We all owned businesses so we got to join, and I bought this great set of dishes, which we still use today. That was in June of 1983! I eat off these plates everyday, and only painting the mug brought back the memories.

I did another three mugs the next day . . .

I bet you may even have seen those artist mugs – Mara’s work is everywhere now. Her style is so unique, you can spot her easily. If anyone knows the artist of the slab mug, I would love to know. It was a couple, actually, and I think they were from Oklahoma.

So, I challenge you to do something like this. It is more rewarding than you can even imagine. Like following a map through your history.

Glass Palette Progress

Just a reminder to be patient – I am firing palettes and shipping almost everyday. Only two more days to place your order. Then I am taking a BIG break. Maybe forever.

Link . . .

A FEW Glass Palettes Available . . .




  1. Love your idea! I’m a cup “freak” and always on the lookout for another one that’s unique, but I’ve never thought to paint them. Delightful idea.

  2. Oh my goodness! Just a minute before I sat down to read your post, my husband and I had almost the exact same conversation that you had with your husband, Mark. Ours centered around the condiments within the refrigerator door. I noticed he opened a brand new bottle of mayo and put it right in front of one that I had opened a few days ago. When I brought it to his attention, his reply was that he didn’t see it and that maybe he needs to get rid of some of the items so he can find items. I suggested that perhaps we need to get rid of some of the beer as I don’t use/drink beer. He was silent after that.

  3. HA, Donna – I sometimes think that marriages might have the same base script. “Get rid of stuff. . . but not MY stuff”

  4. That’s only one in a LONG list, BTW. But we love them.

  5. I found a coffee cup dated “1983 Jessica Wesolek Papillon Graphics”
    the coffee mug reads “Social Insecurity” Unemployed, but not unloved.
    A gentleman in his 80s was here and had a cup of coffee in this mug and
    stated he sure would like to have one. Any Idea where I might find one
    for a gift? Hope you can help.
    Thank You

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