Digging for pottery clay

Finding your own pottery clay

My ceramics class and I went digging for clay.  I was surprised to find that you can harvest your own pottery clay and that there was a seam all along the east coast of Ireland.
We walked for a short while out of Greystones and down to the beach.  The clay was almost perfect directly from the cliff and all we needed to do was remove the sediment it had picked up.  I’m told that once fired it would be  a terracotta colour and smooth however  I’m not sure whether the locals would be happy with art students undermining the cliff walk:)

Clay

Primary source -cliff clay

Me harvesting clay

Packing

The best way to carry it
Laying out the clay to be dried
Drying clay
After the clay has dried we sieve it to remove any sediment then mix with water and sculpt and fire.  The clay from this seam is a light terracotta when bisque fired. 

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