Wednesday, September 5, 2018

The Arts And Crafts Jewel of Calontir: Queen's Prize Tournament

2016 Queen's Prize Tournament
I'm bummed. Calontir's Queen's Prize Tournament is just around the corner, a month away, on September 15th. And I won't be able to go. 

Queen's Prize is Calontir's Medieval arts and crafts treasure. An event you don't want to miss even if you aren't entering. A competition that's inspiring for us all, whether you're a mentor or searching for a learning opportunity.

Intended for new and budding Calontiri, it is a great first Kingdom level competition even if it's your fifth time entering. "Why?", you ask.

Queen's Prize is fun. It's an encouraging friendly competition with built-in positive feedback conversations.

If you're new to competitions it offers you a personal friendly critique opportunity. You get to sit with three experienced artisans and discuss your thoughts on your project's process. What you've done and possible ways to take it in the future.

If you've entered time and again it offers you a different opportunity. A reason to go outside your creative Medieval arts and crafts box, stretch your Falcon wings and try something completely new to you. It might be so new you don't even have it fully finished, a work-in-progress.

A work-in-progress entry offers you a different QPT viewpoint. Intentional or not it includes three others in your creative process. Discussing your work before its finished can give you new direction or remove a roadblock to your effort. It's like having friends over and saying to them "Lookie here. What do you think?"

If you've already received an A & S Grant level award, like a Calontir Lily or Silver Hammer, your opportunity is in encouraging others. While you can't actually enter you can inspire and sponsor entrants. Sponsor friends, family, or a friend you haven't made yet. 

As a sponsor, you might help by coaching, if you're asked. Perhaps with the entry form, loaning necessary tools or advice on the next project step, but without doing the project yourself. You also provide a small gift or favor for an entrant who is not your "sponsoree" so all entrants go home with a prize.

I've learned so much just attending Queen's Prize events. The first was upon receiving my Calon Lily and shockingly discovered I could no longer enter. I was actually crushed. And crushed again because I'd already begun my entry for the year. 

No biggie. I just put it in the judges' group prize basket, a yearly donation amalgam presented to the Judges' Choice recipient. I've done that most years I attend the event.

I've also learned there are so many Medieval things to recreate I'll never be able to get to do them all. From Medieval fishing flies and Chinese fake fingernails to common prayer roll recreations. 

There's much to spark your creative juices at Calontir's Queen's Prize Tourney. Even just looking at the entrants' explorations. They are others' wildest dreams.