I pulled the door this morning on the last firing of 2016, and am pleased with the results. I had a couple of small tests in the kiln, prompted by some accidents in previous firings. One of them is worth pursuing (see below) and reminds me of all the birch trees I see out back on my walks out back of my property. It seems like I have been doing nothing but glazing and firing of late, and I'm ready to switch gears and jump back on the wheel. But, as good tests have a tendency to do, I want to pursue this new pattern soon, not a whole kiln load by any means, but certainly some larger pieces. As I write this, I remember a work of art I saw at a show I was in back in '79 or '80. It was a batik of a birch forest. That memory has stuck with me, and maybe now will have an influence on future works.

Happy 2017 to all that might read this. Do what you can to make it better than you think it might be if you do nothing at all. I wish that peace, good health, and prosperity come your way.