Tuesday, August 2, 2016

What's An Award Scroll's Purpose?

In the SCA we devote hours to award creation and giving. Whether entry level or the highest awards , from start to finish, their total creativity hours are in the thousands for each six-month reign. With all that consumed time, what's their purpose?

Their obvious purpose is to acknowledge the recipient's accomplished efforts. Whether novice or peer, we celebrate together and mark their exclusive occasion.

I've received recognition at work and other clubs with a piece of paper and a handshake from my supervisor or club president. While I was pleased to receive the attention and their notice, my SCA honors mean more to me than any others. 

The SCA goes over the top with their recognition process. They beautify the awards with art, sometimes very original and detailed. They present them with memorable, entertaining style and grace.

In Calontir they identify the recipient as part of a larger, august group. You are whole-heartedly welcomed as its newest member.   

I couldn't believe it when I received my first award for illumination. I was having fun painting pictures from the Codex Manesse. I gave each one a new twist, relating it to someone in the SCA, painting a metaphor about the people receiving my art. I was abundantly surprised to be honored for having fun. 

The award made me aware my art mattered, as did the award I'd just received. It isn't only one moment in time. The award lasts. ... I have mine framed and it memorializes my joy every time I see it. It beautifies my home.

Awards express dreams. My Laurel scroll physically expresses my long-held dream realized. And, my new beginning.

There is more to awards than receiving. Award creation also gives their creator purpose. 

Whether composing text, lettering or painting, scroll creation is the reason I keep learning. There are multitudes of new skills and manuscript history still to explore. And teaching on-going classes takes my learning to a new level and a scary direction. 


 Scroll creation is how I express a fantasy, myth or noteworthy life happening. As with my Manesse Codex twist, there is sneaky pleasure including personally relevant motifs in a scroll, like those I included for HL Beatriz.   

There is also meditation in scroll painting. When I paint, on stopping I often realize hours have unknowingly gone by. I loose myself in time and the world falls away. 

Award scrolls have more important purposes than their obvious intent. We teach, learn, honor, share, beautify, and take pleasure through their giving. They give purpose to my life.