Mixing Clay Bodies

Studio Space

Busy beavering away in the studio the temptation to go back to old routines and ways of doing things is a real pull. To help me resist temptation I’ve been challenging myself to use different clay bodies or to make un-familiar items. The results so far are exciting and I’m now eagerly anticipating having a kiln full of work to fire so that I can see the finished results.

Yesterday I mixed some porcelain and stoneware clay together and then attempted to make ‘large’ objects on the wheel. It didn’t go well; the grog in the stoneware stung my hands when throwing and the clay was not agreeing with me. I changed direction halfway through and decided to slab build the prepared clay. The result was 2 plates and my highlight was decorating them with some of my old slips. I have been painting (on canvas) recently and I could see the transferability of this skill when painting the slips.

One of my next jobs is to experiment with some new slip colours. It’s a big job, but as ever with ceramics waiting to open the kiln when testing new colours is well worth the effort.

I would like to recommend a really good You Tube video that is a great help when mixing two clay bodies together. It’s by Simon Leach and he gives a really clear demonstration of how to wedge and knead clay. The link is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWFsruNTG1Y. Providing both clays fire to similar temperatures all should be well and work.

The above images are some wheel thrown porcelain pots that I made that were decorated with slips.

 

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