Clays available at our studio
I have these clays available at the studio. They come from Laguna Axner in Oviedo and I encourage you to buy from them. They are a Laguna clay distributor. They have more options and their prices are better. With Axner you have to place your order a few days before you want to pick it up. They'll call you when it's ready. They're a warehouse, not a retail store.
You should also check out Florida Clay Art. They are in Sanford. Carole, the owner, is great and her store is a retail operation. So you can go by during business hours and purchase things like you would at a regular store. She's a stocking distributor for Standard Clay and for Amaco Clay and Glazes, among a million other things.
I offer clay in 25 lb bags. If you’re experienced you know that stores sell clay in 50 lb boxes, so if you’re just starting out this may be helpful. It lets you get started with less investment. They are all $3.00 per lb ($75/bag). The difference is that when you buy clay from me, I include firing in the cost. That’s why the prices are higher. This is a good option for people who don't plan to produce a lot of work.
Terms of firing if you buy clay from me: You have 90 days to have your work bisque and glaze fired. Use the firing calendar to see when we are firing bisque and glaze, and put yourself on the schedule. You will bring back your bone-dry green ware and I will bisque fire it for you. Then you’ll take it home and apply glaze(s) to it. After the glaze(s) are dry, you’ll return your bisque ware to me for glaze firing. The rest of the terms are the same as for Kiln Rental, except for the pricing. Make sure you review the terms before bringing over work.
B-Mix 5's smooth, porcelain texture is a pleasure to throw and form, and it fires to a cream color in oxidation.
Mark’s notes: I've been using B-Mix a lot the past few months. I like it. It’s my go-to for functional ware. It's "porcelain-like" in the way the slip feels.
A very fine grog makes for a more forgiving body with a slight texture and minimal speckling.
Mark’s notes: This is what Angie uses for teaching handbuilding. It's also nice for throwing if you like a little tooth in your clay. The grog is very fine so fairly easy on my hands.
A speckled mid temperature, smooth, porcelaineous stoneware that is very plastic and workable. This clay prefers slow drying and ample compression on rims and bottoms to avoid cracks.
Mark’s notes: I've been reading some issues online with this clay bloating above Cone 5. I haven't had a chance to use it personally, but it's worth noting. If you want to try it, make sure you let me know when you fire it, so we get it into a glaze load that's firing to Cone 5, not our regular Cone 6.
Stoneware favorite. Light sand color with fine specks. Excellent cone 6 throwing body which enhances glaze colors and effects. There is no better all around throwing body available for the stoneware look. Fine speckling shows through glazes enhancing the piece.
Mark’s notes: I love throwing this clay. The speckles will burn through a lot of glazes and it’s taken time for me to figure out which glazes work well with it. Even fired at Cone 6 I feel like it’s pretty porous so make sure you glaze the bottom of your mug by cutting a nice foot. The speckles are less prominent at Cone 5.
This clay is compounded to be a stoneware clay with specks that bleed through the glaze, giving the appearance of iron burning through, typical of reduction glazes and clays. A very popular throwing clay for production potters who want to add the speck dimension to their ware.
Mark’s notes: This clay is a little groggy but not objectionably so. I’m not sure if I will use it for delicate functional ware. I've been making large bowls with it. It throws nicely and can be pulled pretty thin. It’s less speckled than 50 and it fires more tan. I especially like it for slab work and making plates and platters.
A good wheel and handbuilding clay body, dark in fired color at Cone 6. Iron colorants in body enhance most glaze color developments.
Mark's notes: We have been using this clay to make plates and handbuilding Christmas ornaments. I love the way it fires to a dark brown. It looks like gingerbread. I haven't thrown with it yet.
Terra cotta. A medium texture, plastic red body. Compounded with fireclay and medium grog. Ideal for large sculptures and hand built work, may be thrown on the wheel.
Mark’s notes: This clay seems like it’s out of production but I got several hundred pounds recently. It’s terra cotta like but not technically terra cotta because it’s mid fire. I plan to use it for flower pots and growing structures for our orchids. After testing I found that it's quite vitreous at Cone 6 -- enough that plants may be too wet unlike traditional terra cotta which is quite porous. This is good news if you're making functional ware!