I'm part of the Society for Creative Anachronism, which is a historical recreation group that studies the Middle Ages and Renaissance. Today was my kingdom's Arts and Sciences Championship event. I brought along my camera, because I had planned to make a blog entry with all of the lovely items that folks had come up with. But, well...I never did get to see the entries. When they are being judged, the general public isn't allowed in the display room. And just before they opened it up for public viewing, I was called away to a meeting that lasted for more than an hour. By the time I got out, the display had been cleaned up. So, I really have no idea what was entered this time around.
However, I still had a marvelous day, and I'm going to show you pictures of all of the unofficial artsy stuff that went on. This is what the rest of us did to amuse ourselves while the judges were busy with the official business of the day.
To start off, we got there while the King and Queen were holding their court, where announcements are made and awards are given. I was pleased to see my apprentice get recognized for his artistic ability. (He is an awesome bard, and also does map making and teaches how to make drinking horns.) In this picture, the King is about to present him with a hand illuminated and calligraphied scroll suitable for framing. The scribes in our group work hours and hours to create individual works of art for all the award recipients.
After court, the judges went off to do their thing, and the rest of us looked for ways to pass the time. The rapier fighters and the heavy armored fighters both held tournaments that were fun to watch. Here is my champion in the heavy tournament, just an instant before he delivered a blow to his opponent's leg. Good clean shot! The armor, costumes, and weapons are hand made. (They're wearing more armor under the tunics.) You can't just go to WalMart to get a helm these days, you know?
Speaking of costumes, everyone who attended the event was in some sort of costume. Most had made the outfit themselves. Some of these get very elaborate and accurate to the time period. This is my daughter's friend, in a dress she designed and sewed based on a portrait of one of Henry VIII's wives. Isn't she spectacular?
Back inside, we had various musicians playing the afternoon away.
Lots of people brought some sort of handwork to do, and to teach others.
And, there were some items on display that weren't in the actual competition.
All in all, it was a marvelous day. I'm still a bit put out that I didn't get to see the actual competition portion of the day...but I spent my time surrounded by good friends, beautiful things, and people who were more than willing to share the neat arts that they were passionate about. How can you go wrong?