The rule of any competition is to know your victory conditions. You would not bring a knife to a gunfight, or an ostrich to a camel race. However, I am constantly surprised how many people don’t read the criteria for entering A&S competitions.
Some A&S entries only require a small bit of documentation, some more so, and some none at all. However all competitions will list the required rules, documentation, and victory conditions. If you want to do well in an A&S competition, read the rules and criteria.
For my general research I use my Big W Sheets. Luckily in the Midrealm a majority of the criteria is the same as most look at:
- Materials & Methods
The Big W sheet helps answer a majority of the questions within the documentation as well as the materials & methods section. I use this sheet to pin down exactly what I am going to be doing.
Once I know what I am doing, I than go and read the criteria for the items category. This is important because each individual category has some small nuisances For instance did you know that:
- For Leatherwork you should have either a picture of an extant piece or an initial design drawing of what you want to do
- For casting, the molds should be included with the entry
- Illuminations work as primary sources in instrument making
- Animal Husbandry is a mail in category
I have found that it makes writing your documentation down the line a whole lot easier if in the beginning you re-write exactly what they are wanting from the criteria. I then go through and try to answer these points very similar to answering a test from my high school days. By doing this in the begging I have half my documentation written before I even start the project.
After my projects is finished and my documentation is written, I then go back and make sure that each of those criteria points are listed in my documentation ( or in my presentation). I create a checklist using the criteria, and include the scoring which then gives me a good idea of how many points I could potentially get.
I figured these checklists could be beneficial to others, so as I make them I will upload to the site. I currently have uploaded 3 of them. I only make them as I personally need them, so if you want a particular one, just email me and I can create it. Please note, that these checklists should not be used instead of reading the criteria but used alongside it.