AT THE 2002 CALGARY STAMPEDE
by Lee M. Boyle
CALGARY -- home of the 1988 Winter Olympic Games and the Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth: THE CALGARY STAMPEDE AND EXHIBITION. Think of it as your local country fair magnified one hundredfold or more! It encompasses ten fun-packed days of Western heritage celebrations commencing with the grand parade featuring spectacular floats, music, natives with their colorful and exquisitely beaded costumes, antique vehicles and horse hitches, and Canada's famous Royal Canadian Mounted Police horses. That is followed by ten days of scrumptious caravan pancake-and-sausage breakfasts; toe-tapping fiddlin' and square dancing; world-famous Country performers and entertainment; rodeo events complete with all the thrills and spills you can imagine from the tiny tots ridin' and bustin' sheep, to hardy cowboys rough ridin' broncs, and to hilarious clowns wrestling bulls; fast-action chuckwagon races; heart-stopping, stomach-churning rides and exciting carnival games; world show band competitions; theatrical and musical grandstand stage show extravaganza; fantastic laser light and firework displays; traditional native teepee village complete with educational activities and colorful, swirling native dancers to astound you; international market place of food and products; and a large variety of agricultural and livestock displays and competitions, including one of my favorite displays, Ted Braunworth's cute and cuddly baby chick hatchery and exotic fowl exhibits.
Since 1972, a large group of volunteers have dedicated themselves to "the presentation and preservation of Western Heritage through an exciting and quality exhibition of individual talent, showcasing Western life, culture, and traditions to the world." Those exhibits include: Arts and Crafts demonstrations (including the Make It and Take It craft projects sponsored by local businesses) and displays, Kitchen Theatre demonstrations featuring local and celebrity chefs, International Photo competition and displays, Artisan booths featuring unique quality crafts, Floral Artistry displays and competitions, the Western Art Show featuring original works of Western-themed art, bronzes/sculptures, and auction, and the popular Creative Arts and Crafts and Cake Decorating Competition. For more information on the Calgary Stampede, go to the web page.
Hundreds of entries are accepted in the Creative Arts and Crafts Competition from around the world. To have your entry accepted and then displayed during the Stampede is an honor in itself! There are seven major Divisions: a Master Division (entrants are professionals or have been Section winners twice in the past five years), Charity Division, Junior Division (entrants must be 12 years old or younger), Cake Decorating Division, Nursing Home Division (entrants must be residents of an nursing home), Open Division (entrants must be over 18 years old), and Seniors Division (entrants must be over 65 years old). The Open and Seniors Division both include a number of major Sections encompassing numerous competition classes, including knitting, crocheting, sewing, quilting, stitchery, cross stitch, beading, ceramics, calligraphy, decorative painting, china painting, spinning and weaving, rugs, wood working, dolls and toys, framed paintings or drawings, holidays of the year, and assorted handicrafts (which includes mirrors and glass, basketry, metal work, leather work, modeling compound, dry plant material ornaments, sculpture, jewelry, paper tole, mixed media, and eggery). For more information as to on-line registration, entry fees, and related matters, go to the web page.
Aside from traditional Pysanky, eggart remains but a rare art in Canada. All forms of eggart are judged together in one class for 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and Honourable Mention ribbons. Entrants are permitted one entry per Class. Thankfully, Judges have been open to accepting eggart in some other classes. As with all the classes, unless an entry is deemed worthy, no level of ribbon may be awarded, regardless of whether or not there is competition in that particular class. Unlike the American egg shows so many of you are familiar with, we do not have professional eggers judging the eggery portion of the competition, but we do have Judges who are well experienced in all areas of arts and crafts. Personally, I have found it helpful to attach a short note to the entry explaining the technique and materials utilized to the Judges and noting that the entry is fragile. After the classes are judged, the 1st place entry in the Eggery Class is then judged against 16 other 1st place entries in the Assorted Handicrafts Section for 1st (including a medallion), 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th place ribbons. The Section ribbons are comparable to "Best of Show" awards. In many cases, the Judges take the time to write wonderful comments and even suggestions on the back of each entry form which is then returned to the entrant.
A group of brave Fowl Eggers took on that challenge this year, and I must admit they have certainly astounded the Judges with their talent and creative genius in both egging and non egging classes!
Our wonderful Fowl Eggers mentor, Doris Lockerbie, who remains so young at heart, with a gleaming twinkle in her eye as she tackles each new intriguing challenge to successfully expand the boundaries of eggart and to encourage us all to do the same, set a new standard of excellence for the Judges in the Seniors Division. "Music Man - The Listener" won the 1st Place Ribbon in the Miscellaneous Class as well as the 1st Place Section Ribbon and Medallion in the Dolls and Toys Section of the Seniors Division, and it has to be one of the cutest, comical little fellas you can imagine. It was created using two emu eggs, with decoupaged pictures of music CD inserts on top, music notes in his ears, fimo hands and feet to keep the "beat", and a huge smile, and inside it is a handmade kaleidoscope complete with superior optics.
Doris' amazing intricate cut ostrich egg carving won the 1st Place Ribbon in the Eggery Class as well as the 2nd Place Section Ribbon in the Assorted Handicrafts Section of the Seniors Division. In addition, this spectacular carving won one of the prestigious 2002 Trinity Lodge Senior Division B Awards which are awarded to six of the outstanding entries in the entire Senior Division. A special pre-Stampede tea was held to honor the winning entrants, and representatives of the Trinity Lodge presented them with their Ribbons and $50.00 cash awards.
Doris Lockerbie, who sells her eggart and welcomes custom orders, may be contacted by email.
Louise Charko, a talented and gracious Ukrainian lady living in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, was awarded the 2nd Place Ribbon in the Eggery Class of the Seniors Division for her gorgeous geometric Pysanky rhea egg done using the Batik method. This precious egg was designed in the Spring of 2002 especially for one of her lucky grandchildren, and I'm sure that grandchild will treasure it! She has won many times for her batik form of eggart/Pysanky over the years. She has been decorating eggs for 55 years, having started at the tender age of 11 years, and she plans to hand down her large collection of her amazing work to her beloved children and grandchildren -- what a wonderful legacy for them to cherish in the years ahead!
The Judges in the Open Division also feasted their eyes on some phenomenal eggart, both in the Eggery Class and in the non-egging classes, and I can't imagine how hard it must have been for them to judge! Another of our very talented Fowl Eggers, Debbie Fodor, of Banff, Alberta, whose boundless energy and enthusiasm for eggart in all its varied forms continues to be an inspiration for us, and who continues to teach us so much about the art of carving and to share so generously with us the fruits of her labour and experimentation, won the 2nd Place Ribbon in the Eggery Class in the Open Division for her exquisitely carved and intricate cut ostrich egg. To really appreciate the skill in which this egg was carved, you would need to see it lit from below with a light base. (see photo above left) Many hours were spent by her in achieving that degree of undercutting and the smooth, high polished finish.
Fodor, who sells her eggart and welcomes custom orders, may be contacted by
by snail mail at:
To see more of Debbie's unique eggart, go to her webpage.
I felt so honored to discover I had been awarded the 1st Place Ribbon in the Eggery Class as well as the 2nd Place Section Ribbon in the Assorted Handicrafts Section in the Open Division for my first deep-relief intricate cut carving, "Heron's Moonlight Haven". This was my original freehand design carved on a rhea egg of a pair of Great Blue Herons sharing a trout snack by moonlight amongst the pond's intertwining bulrushes. To avoid the risk of stress breakage during drying, I had bleached the egg after doing the deep relief carving but before doing the cutaways, and, yes, I certainly did hold my breath while doing those cutaways!
In the Open Division, the 3rd Place Ribbon in the Eggery Class was awarded to a Calgary, Alberta, lady who created a lovely blue and white ink design on an ostrich egg, and the Honourable Mention Ribbon in the Eggery Class was awarded to another Calgary, Alberta, lady who created an intricately cut "trellis cage" golden goose egg with miniature flowers twining up the shell on the outside. Another of our Fowl Eggers, Donna May, of Calgary, Alberta, created a lovely black hinge ring jewel box containing a surprise miniature jeweled egg, and her creation was proudly on display in the Eggery Class. Another lady from Golden, British Columbia, had on display her ostrich egg diorama containing a girl doll dressed in native clothing surrounded by dream catchers. A family also entered a couple of painted and decorated hanging eggs, one with a cute miniature ballerina taking a bow.
A first-time entrant, Donna May cried for joy upon discovering that she had won the 1st Place Ribbon in the "Article with Beads Glued or Wired On" Class with her beautiful geometric beaded ostrich egg bank. This was her first Stampede ribbon, and what a treat it must have been to have her loving family at her side to share in that special moment. Donna also had some wonderful compliments from the Judges on her carved emu angel which was entered and placed on display in the Miscellaneous Class of the Holidays of the Year Section.
Donna May, who sells her eggart and welcomes custom orders, may be contacted by email.
With the encouragement of family, friends, and coworkers, I decided to test the waters and to enter some of my eggart in non-egging classes in the Open Division, and I am absolutely thrilled with the results!
My egg, "Majestic Macaw", won the 1st Place Ribbon in the Miscellaneous Class of the Assorted Handicrafts Section as well as the 4th Place Section Ribbon in the Assorted Handicrafts Section in the Open Division. This was my original design of a Macaw created freehand by gluing individual strands of a variety of types and lengths of silk embroidery threads to a Goose Egg which had been painted black. Gwen Howe of Egger's World has graciously published a set of my detailed instructions and helpful hints relating to this technique, as well as a pattern I've created freehand for this egg, in the article "Embroidered Egg: Majestic Macaw", in the 2002 Issue 24 of the Eggers' World Quarterly magazine. She may be contacted at: GDHdesign@aol.com
"Poseidon's Playground", another of my eggs, won the 1st Place Ribbon in the Modeling Compound Class in the Open Division. It was also an original design created using a Ostrich Egg airbrushed with acrylics and cut with two circular inverted cutaways and two sets of hinged dual accordion doors on which handmade fimo tropical fish are swimming serenely amongst handmade fimo seaweed and real seashells collected from all over the world. Doors with mat board inserts fold out to reveal tropical ocean scenes. On top is a handmade fimo scene of a Belted Kingfisher snacking on a Clown Fish while sitting on a log mischievously mocking the posted "No Fishing" sign.
My miniature "Classical Cherub" won the 1st Place Ribbon in the "Decorative Painting on Ornament" Class as well as the 2nd Place Section Ribbon in the Holidays of the Year Section in the Open Division. This original design was inspired by the ancient Church's crackling plaster paintings and mosaics and was created freehand using pencil crayons and pastels on a Duck Egg that was then broken into small pieces and reassembled by gluing each piece individually on another Duck Egg painted with acrylics.
"Here Comes Peter Cottontail", which was previously featured in Emu's Zine's Easter Egg Parade won the 1st Place Ribbon in the Miscellaneous Class of the Holidays of the Year Section. This original design was created by cutting a Goose Egg to resemble a wicker Easter Egg basket hand-painted using acrylics and pastels. A hand-painted ceramic chick hatching from a rainbow colored egg is nestled in the basket amongst artificial grass and handmade fimo Easter eggs painted with acrylics to resemble traditional Ukrainian Pysanky. A hand-painted Easter bunny on a hand-painted wooden base is getting ready for his annual hop down the Bunny Trail.
My last entry was in the Masters Division. "Beware the Viper's Venom" won the 3rd Place Ribbon in the Assorted Handicrafts Masters Class. This original design was created using a Goose Egg (with an opening cut for its mouth) mounted on a plastic napkin ring, with features added using plaster cloth and gel mediums hard molding paste, and with a fimo forked tongue (reinforced with brass wire) and fimo fangs oozing with epoxy venom. The entire outside of the snake was covered with pieces of the shed skin of a corn snake, and acrylic paint and pastels were applied to resemble the markings of an Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake. It was mounted on a hand-painted wooden base beside deer antlers with hand-carved ends.
To see more of my eggart, please visit:
also sell my eggart and welcome custom orders, and I may be contacted by email
or by snail mail at:
I hope you will consider joining us for the 2003 Calgary Stampede from July 4th to July 13th, 2003!