I enjoy working with different types of clay. The first clay I tried was B-Mix with grog. I don't know exactly why I chose that one. Maybe I saw all the other beginners choosing Soldate 60 and decided to try something different. I remember thinking it felt coarse like sandpaper which is funny to me now since I think it feels relatively smooth compared to other clays. Over the next several blogs, I'll discuss different types of clay bodies and share some of my experiences with each one. I know that potters are working with clay from many sources, so the names of these clays probably won't mean much to most of you. But I also think most of you are using stoneware and porcelain clays that are similar in composition so you may still find my discussion useful. As a side note, let me mention that I've heard and read several Europeans and Japanese complain about the lack of plasticity in North American clay bodies and how grateful they are to have better clay bodies to use in their own countries. I suppose this is based on their experience of both, but I can't speak to that since I've only used clay from North American sources, namely Laguna and Aardvark. It does make me curious, however, and I hope someday to try clay bodies from other parts of the world to compare them to my own. But for now, clay from Laguna and Aardvark is all I have to work with. In the next blog, I'll begin my discussion of different types of clay with three very dark stoneware clays: Black Mountain, Jamaica, and Dark Brown.
I began potting in January of 2012. Because I'm so new to potting, I think I understand the challenges of beginning potters and hope this blog will be encouraging to them and a source of helpful information and comment. I hope you'll join the conversation!