Sunday, July 14, 2013


It has been a great week.

Winnie dropped me off at the hotel in time to meet the judging team for dinner.  We had a chance to get to know each other, relax a bit and get some organizational items addressed for the task on Thursday of judging the fashion show entries.

The organizing team had everything set up, a system in place and our job was to examine the entries and try to quantify them for the awards.

And there were plenty of awards!

The three judges were compatible with a varied enough background that at least one was knowledgable about each technique being presented that we could consult about any perceived issues and the assigning of awards went fairly quickly.  But there were 60+ entries so the jurying literally took all day.

Any judge/juror worth their salt will carefully consider each entry and I can confidentially say that we did.

There are many reasons for entering a juried show.  There are the awards, of course!   And there were lots of those, too.  We agreed to spread the largess around, as much as possible.

Another reason for entering a juried show is for the considered opinion of the judges.  It is a way to get constructive feedback from the collective wisdom of the pool of judges.  Whether or not you agree with their assessment you will get feedback, one way or another.

In this instance one of the judges did a seminar sharing her thoughts (and no doubt some of the discussion we all had) with the participants.  It was an opportunity for the participants to get in depth feedback, not just on their own entries, but on all of them.  A great way to learn in a very short period of time.

When entering a juried exhibit you have to be prepared for the jurors to notice and comment on those tiny little 'flaws' that every piece has.  Noticing them allows the judges to separate two very close items, adding up those tiny little issues to see which has the fewest so that awards can be granted.

Entering a fashion show means that weavers should keep in mind that a garment will be seen at a distance as well as close up.  Jurors will consider distance impact, which tends to be a lot more dramatic than an intimate scale, as well as interest close up.  A garment that 'works' at both an intimate as well as at a distance is going to be deemed more successful than one that only works at either, but not both.

Essentially judging boils down to personal opinion, but by and large, a reasonably educated opinion.  If you receive feedback that you don't agree with, remember that it is *just* an opinion, after all.


Kerstin på Spinnhuset said...

I'm *so* glad to hear about jurors who take the time to give feedback! From the not very many (6 or 7?) juried exhibitions I have entered, I have never got more than "empty words" back, regardless if I was accepted or refused... *any* kind of opinion is so much better than "a wonderful piece of weaving" followed by either "but" or "congratulations".
IMO, of course.

Laura Fry said...

Much depends on the organization sponsoring the exhibit. Some require feedback, others don't. NEWS wanted the feedback. :)