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Re: Heraldic help

Poster: Dan Mackison <DanM@skantech.com>

Kai Scheppe wrote [many good things snipped short]:

> A) Anybody who is not in some fashion called a Herald should STAY AWAY from
> blazoning anything.  If you are submitting a device, chances are you are
> relatively new to the SCA and may have walked past a good work of heraldry,
> but no more.  DO NOT BLAZON, even if you think you know what you're doing.

My opinion is quite the contrary. Since any device will be passed based
soley on how it looks, a blazon on the form can only ADD to the quality
of the submission, not detract from it.
> B) Submitters should make their best attempt to depict what they want to
> show.  This means making use of new technology, i.e. clipart and copies of
> actual pictures.  Cut, paste and enlarge are powerful drawing tools even to
> the most inept artist.  Any goat you find, that is drawn by a professional,
> should do, for example.

I would warn against "good art - bad heraldry". Again in my opinion,
heraldic figures should be slightly "cartoony". They should have a
strong outline and be distinct from a distance. I once saw a dragon
handed back by the herald for a redraw because the art was too good -
the artist drew each scale of the (argent) dragon with his pen, causing
it to blend in with the dark background at a distance.

> C) This is the most important suggestion, which I employed myself with
> success.  Draw lines away from each item on your submission and LABEL it in
> PLAIN english.  Say what it is, what color it has, what orientation or
> anything else that is necessary.  It's a big form with lots of room.

I don't know that this is most important, but I would certainly file
that suggestion under "couldn't hurt to try".
> D) Point out the obvious.  The submitters has thought over and over again
> about his device.  The Herald will see it for the first time on the
> submission form.  What is clear to the submitter may not be clear to the
> Herald at all.

I don't remember which herald told me this but I do remember one local
herald saying that the first thing she does is pin the form on one side
of the living room and then look at it from the other side of the room.
Having the submitter do it with her eliminates many devices submitted
that are "too busy" or have "charges drawn too small."
[good suggestion snipped]
> F) If, after all this work, which is done solely by the submitter, the
> Herald still has a question, a phone call would be more than justified.

For the local herald, I would agree. Expecting Triton or Laurel to call
each person with a poor form is a bit much for the volume of work those
officers do.

> G) Lastly, include a return post card with the submission forms, prestamped
> and prewritten, that can be sent back to the submitter when the submission
> has reached a certain point, i.e. Herald's meeting or some such point in time.

That is an EXCELLENT suggestion that I have never heard voiced before.


| Dan Mackison                          | Occasionally   |
| dan.mackison@pobox.com                | known as       |
| http://www.geocities.com/Athens/1824/ | Thomas MacFinn |
+---------------------------------------+ and            |
| Hilda Jarvis                          | Vicountess     |
| hilda.jarvis@pobox.com                | Vincetta       |
| http://www.geocities.com/Paris/6400/  | duJarvain      |

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