Friday, January 29, 2016

Playing With Powdered Period Pigments

I'm teaching again!! It's been years, unfortunately. 

In early April you can take my "Playing With Period Pigments" class at the Bellewode Heraldic Scribal and Dance Symposium in Kirksville, MO. It is a safety and hands-on class, teaching paint production from natural earth powdered pigments. You'll take home the safety supplies and paints you make.

Would you care to see photos I snapped in 2010 of the same class? I just have two.

6 Ladies in medieval clothing working powdered pigments at a table
Calontir Scribes Playing with Powdered Pigments

Three Ladies in medieval clothing at a table making paint
Making Paint From Powder
My Messy Studio
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                What do I do to prepare? First I must clean out my neglected mini-studio. Poor thing has been ignored for a few months since I got hooked on blogging. I'll take stock of my handouts and supplies. Then I'll cajole/invite a few Lonely Tower scribes to take a condensed practice class.
20 raw rock samples in their display case
My Raw Rock Mineral Collection
                                                                     Each time I teach a class it's different. New, this time, you will see and hold my raw mineral rock collection. Ground to powder and added to a binder, these rocks make paint used in manuscript illumination . Some are used in paint to this day.
Getting started, wouldn't it be great if my studio were self-cleaning? I'd be ecstatic! You know, cleaning is usually last on my to-do list. There are so many crafts and computer things I rather do.                                                                                                                                                                                                      

Sunday, January 17, 2016

SCA Melee Skill Practice at Winter War Maneuvers

This was the moment he most loved about tourneying, that first glorious sortie with banners streaming, trumpets blaring, and the earth atremble with pounding hooves as hundreds of knights came together in a spectacular clash of sound and fury. 
― Sharon Kay PenmanDevil's Brood
Have you ever seen Medieval-style fighting? Recently I saw SCA warriors preparing, so they could soon feel the spectacular clash as Penman describes. Calontir's army and guests thrash each other in melee skill practice, for the learning experience. This was at Mag Mor's Winter War Maneuvers.  
Many medieval style current fighters practicing skills.
Melee Warm Up

Pole armed fighters paying attention to instructions.
Listening to Instructions

You see apparent mass mayhem punctuated by "ring-side" instruction.
Small groups of standing armored fighters listening to directions
Fighters Gather for Group Directions

Field Court

Meetings and Court break up the day.    
Knights Swear Fealty to HRM Matsu

Another Melee Round Supervised by the Marshall 

Followed by more inspiring (or perspiring) melee practice.

On the sidelines, you saw children playing with crafts.
 And adults playing as children. 

Sharp sewing, eager embroidery, chipper chatting, spinning, lace making, eating, and various furtherance activities went unphotographed.  

At the final Closing Court, you saw His Majesty Matsu give out honors and make announcements. Unfortunately, I was already on my way home. 

Saturday, January 9, 2016

One Word Challenge 2016

Have you heard of the One Word Challenge? I recently discovered it. You pick one word as your year's focus. A positive challenge that fits with My Atypical 2016 Chuck-It List concepts. Easy. (I like simple.)

The first thing I did was google the phrase. Just in case, it was more complex than it seemed. I learned there are only two basic steps.
  • Thoughtfully select one word reflecting the possible future you. Examine all the aspects of your chosen word. Do you truly want those traits? Is that the person you want to become? Would this change your life?
  • Use your word every way you can: calendars, post-it notes, journaling, social media, art, hobbies, prayer, friends, quotes, bookmarks, to-do lists, doodles, decisions, chalk-boards...  For the coming year, focus on your chosen word daily.
That's it. Very simple.

The web pages promoting the One Word Challenge (and their products) tout its life-changing ability. They talk about the few years they have done this and the results. Is it worth a try?

Have you ever done a One Word Challenge? What were your results? Please, let us know in the comment section below. 

For my 2016 One Word Challenge, I have chosen the word "Enthusiasm". Do you think I will stay on point for the whole year?

Sunday, January 3, 2016

12th Night 2016: Barony of Lonely Tower's Midwinter SCA Festival

The Barony of the Lonely Tower delivered another striking Twelfth Night mid-winter SCA fete, January 2, 2016. Calontir Steel and Armored Combat fighters wielded weapons in multiple diverse contests.

Two fighters compete with faux swords
Armored Combat Competition

Lonely Tower's annual event kick starts the years event calendar. It delights Calontir's warmhearted, non-fighting populace with day-long friendship, fun, and festivities. 

The annual revelry presents all-ages activities, classes, and crafts.

Children playing with an adult watching
Children Share Activities

Lonely Tower's annual silent auction sells numerous thrifty SCA related items funding its local, weekly activities. 

Medievally dressed man looks at auction item
Graf Volkmar Considers Auction Item
HL Clare Supervises Silent Auction

At day's end, Calontir's rulers present the deserving populace awards, prizes and moving announcements.

Audience wait for court to begin.
Court Will Start Momentarily

Competetion Prize Presentation During Court

Lonely Tower's winter festivities enliven the dreary winter, providing fighters skill practice, others learning experiences and everyone friendly social exchange. Calontir is my extended family.

Friday, January 1, 2016

My Atypical 2016 Chuck-it List

It's New Years Eve and I home with my fur friends, relaxing with a glass of wine. I have my day's responsibilities completed and look forward to the coming year. Time to make resolutions. Have you made resolutions for 2016?

My resolutions are not normal or typical. They are things I don't want to do again before I die. An anti-bucket list, some call a “chuck-it list”. (Others use a more colorful name.) Whatever you call it, it is a thoughtful list of things that deter living a happy, content life.

This 2016 I don't want to...

Funky dressed old couple dining out.
Living A Vibrant Old Age
  • care what other people think about me. This is a tough one as I “mature”. I want a vibrant old age, for sure. I want it for me, not to avoid others labeling me “old”. My fine, thin hair and missing nouns are me, now. I will embrace them.

  • stress about completing my to-do list. I am a can-do person, therefore, I have an active “to-do list”. I will continue to get things done. What I will give up is caring about items I miss. They are the less important ones, after all.

  • be negative. Regret, guilt, pride, heartache, depression drain creative thinking and fulfillment. While I can't stop them, I can take part in joyful activities that impede them.

  • be apathetic. I have things I want to do. Being almost 70, means the future may have less remaining active time available. Giving up apathy is taking control and using your available time. It is less being lazy, and more attitude.

Elderly woman appears to tell off older man inside a mall.
Publicly Sharing Opinions
  • care about society's expectations, what “they” think I should do. I am a Boomer. Revamping common collective assumptions is our nature and brand. Keeping myself and others safe, I will remain independent, an individual, and think for myself, as long as I possibly am able.

This is my 2016 broad-brush chuck-it list. A personal mission statement providing a crutch for strength and a future adventure handshake. 

I could include specifics to avoid like heights, snakes, filth, and political campaigns. There are other possibilities. Have you thought about making a chuck-it list? What would you put on your list?