Manta Ray Mug


Art by BigToe, in collaboration with Nat Komes

Availability: In stock

SKU: WMugMRayBlue Category: Tag:

Limit one Manta Ray Mug per person.

For our first mug release since opening Wilfred’s Lounge in November of 2021, Proprietor Nat Komes worked with Southern California-based, world-renowned artist BigToe to create a mug honoring the manta ray, one of the largest, most majestic creatures in the ocean.

Found worldwide, this gentle giant of the sea has a long history in island culture and represents wisdom, grace, strength and flow.

Our Manta Ray Mug features an eye-catching abundance of marine life in remarkable detail. Finished in a lustrous, multi-dimensional glaze of watery blue tones. Commissioned from the world-famous Tiki Farm, made with the highest-quality craftsmanship.

  • Capacity: Approx 20 ounces
  • Dimensions: 8″ tall, 7″ wide, 4″ long
  • Material: Glazed stoneware ceramic
  • Artist: BigToe, in collaboration with Nat Komes
  • Production: TikiFarm
  • Release year: 2022

Our tiki mugs are handmade, handpainted and fired. Minor color variations are possible, and capacity may vary slightly.


Q: How were you first approached with Nat’s idea for the Manta Ray Mug? What was your reaction?
A: I was approached by my long-term collaborator, Holden Westland from Tiki Farm. He tapped me as the designer for this project, knowing that I am an “ocean person.” He told me that Nat wanted to do a mug that featured a Manta Ray, and I immediately fell in love with the project.

Q: What inspired you in creating the Manta Ray design?
A: I have traveled to the South Pacific for many years, and right away was inspired by seeing rays swimming over tropical reefs in Tahiti to flesh out the vessel of the mug with a tropical reef teeming with local sea life…and the fishhook tail seemed like a fun addition for Wilfred’s, as it symbolizes for Hawaiians an affinity to the ocean.

Q: Tell us about your artistic process.
A: I typically sketch front view options for client review in pencil. Below is a drawing of the stubby, first round sketches I submitted to Holden for Nat’s review. Based on comments, particularly to make the mug taller to make it a more practical daily use mug, I then make adjustments, then sketch a set of tight turnarounds for sculpt direction. In this case, I stylized a lot of different specific sea critters, so I also sent photos of all the different animals. This mug was sculpted digitally, and there were a number of review rounds to nail the look of the mug, the legibility of the animals, the gesture, size and shape of the vessel to make it practical for bar use. Another unique feature of this mug is the crosshatch texture on the back. I use texture to “catch” the glaze and add depth to the surface of the mug.

Manta Ray Mug - Front

Q: How long was the creation process from initial discussion to mug release party?
A: I started sketching in early November of 2021 and the release party was late September of 2022. It’s a long process!

Q: What makes the Manta Ray so special?
A: For me, the manta ray is an amazing, majestic animal. I have seen massive rays feeding on schools of fish in Hawaii, and it’s breath-taking. They look like alien spaceships gliding through inner space! They just seem like super chill monarchs of the sea.

Q: Anything else you’d like to share?
A: I was just so stoked to work on this project. It was a great opportunity to work on a fun mug that wasn’t my usual goofy subject matter. Definitely a labor of love that was almost an instantaneous inspiration when Holden asked me to do it. It made the process much smoother that Holden is a saltwater aquarium geek…and I was so stoked that Nat was on board with my concept! We had so much fun at the mug release party. Wilfred’s is an amazing jewel of a tiki bar. And the drinks, food and hospitality were 10/10!

Artist BigToe
Artist BigToe at the Manta Ray Mug Release Party at Wilfred’s Lounge in Napa


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