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Mother Nature's Porcelain - From a Cretaceous Dust Storm!

Notes

Plainsman Clays did 6 weeks of mining in June-July 2018 in Ravenscrag, Saskatchewan. We extracted marine sediment layers of the late Cretaceous period. The center portion of the B layer is so fine that it must have wind-transported (impossibly smooth, like a body that is pure terrasig)! The feldspar and silica are built-in, producing the glassiest surface I have ever seen (despite this, pieces are not warping in the firings at cone 6). I have not glazed the outside of this mug for demo purposes. I got away with it this time because the Ravenscrag clear glaze is very compatible. But with other glazes they cracked when I pour in hot coffee.

Mother Nature's Porcelain - From a Cretaceous Dust Storm!

Clay and dinosaur country in southern Saskatchewan

Clay and dinosaur country in southern Saskatchewan

This is the Frenchman river valley and is the home of the "Whitemud Formation" and two of the mines of Plainsman Clays. The Whitemud layers are clearly visible on the badlands side of the valley (half way down on the left). However the Plainsman quarries are on the rolling hills side, where many places can be found having much less over-burden above the white layers. These materials were laid down as marine sediments during the Cretaceous period. Below the Whitemuds are formations from the Jurassic period. A complete T-Rex, dubbed "Scotty", was found nearby and can be seen in the T.rex Discovery Centre in Eastend, Saskatchewan.

Links

Materials B Clay
Glossary Vitrification
The term vitrified refers to the fired state of a piece of porcelain or stoneware. Vitrified ware has been fired high enough to make it very strong, hard and dense.
Articles How to find and test your own native clays
Some of the key tests needed to really understand what a clay is and what it can be used for can be done with inexpensive equipment and simple procedures. These practical tests can give you a better picture than a data sheet full of numbers.

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