The weekend at Kindrogan with the Scottish Potters was great fun. Absolutely beautiful place, seemingly miles from anywhere, and the weather was fantastic. Such a relief to feel some warm sun on my skin. The demonstrations went well - no major collapsing disasters and I didn't embarrass myself at the Ceilidh (I don't think).
Back home and it's straight into clay body preparation for my next firing. This is clay making the hard and slow way.
The clay I'm preparing today is a carbonaceous clay from Devon that is like a rock. I have to crush it first, then slake it with water. This softens it but fails to make it plastic, so I have to re-crush it later. It is too coarse to go through the pugmill - and I am making relatively small batches as I don't have that much of it. I'm not blunging and sieving it as I want the variation in the clay that its unground texture gives in the firing.
Sitting here after a few days of this I can hardly move my right hand (left hand typing!)