The Clay Pits

We're raising a generation of potters that think you just peel back the sod and there is a perfectly plastic wrapped 25 lbs of de-aired clay ready to throw. I just spent the morning with some local clay that needed to be slaked for a lovely iron rich slip and I'm drying some out in a plaster mold to use for throwing. My aunt and uncle used this clay for their throwing body. We would slake it down, pump it thru a screen to take the rocks out and fill these large row boats with slip. The ice would come to the surface of the boat over the winter and my uncle would take the sheets of ice off in spring to have a pretty nice throwing body. If I was overly rambunctious he would have me foot wedge the clay in the boat. This would tire me out and I'd sleep like a dog that evening.


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