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A variety of earthy materials formed by the decomposition of granite.


The art or work of making objects out of clay, such as pottery and sculpture.

Stages of Clay

1. Plastic
2. Leather hard
3. Greenware
4. Bone Dry
5. Bisque


The ability clay has to be flexible, yet retain its shape when formed into other shapes

Leather hard

Clay that feels cool and moist but is firm enough to hold its shape; it is best to carve designs and form at this stage; clay can still be attached; cannot change or mold form


The state of clay before it is fired; can be recycled with water

Bone Dry

Unfired clay that is completely dry. It is most fragile at this stage


Unglazed clay that has been fired once


A thin coat of minerals that fuses to the clay when fired in a kiln. When heated to a high temperature, the glaze forms a thin, permanent glassy surface


An oven or furnace used for drying, firing, and glazing clay objects.


The exposure of clay to high heat in order to change it chemically and harden it permanently. This can be done in a furnace, hole in the ground, metal garbage can, etc

Creating with clay

1. Handbuilding
2. Modeling
3. Wedge
4. Pinching
5. Coiling
6. Slab


The process of building pots or sculptures without the use of a potter's wheel.This method includes pinching, coiling, and building with slabs. TEXTURE is the surface quality of the clay and important to consider; visual and tactile.


The manipulation of clay or other sculptural materials with the hands to change its shape.


Kneading the clay to remove air bubbles and to even the consistency of the clay.


The act of squeezing plastic clay between the thumb and finger to form a pot or sculpture.


A method of forming pottery or sculpture form rolls of clay welded together to create walls


The use of flat pieces of clay with even thickness to construct the clay form.

Attaching/ Joining Clay pieces

1. Scoring
2. Slip
3. Weld


To make rough indentations into the clay with a fingernail, tool, or toothbrush as a step before joining two pieces of clay.


Clay diluted with water to a creamy consistency and used to join two pieces of clay.


Joining two pieces of clay by using fingers or tools to smear and smooth the clay back and forth at the joint so that no seams shows at the connection point.

Two Methods for building 3D form

1. Addition
2. Subtraction


To build up or assemble from serveral pieces


To carve or cut away from main form.

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