Over the years I have been a willing entrant in my local show. It all started many years ago as a bit of friendly high school competition. We all started with coconut ice. Every year myself and my friends would all cook up a batch and enter. On the Saturday night of the show, we would all go along together and check out how we all went. Some years my friends would swear they were not entering a thing, to come along and see their name on a first place tag. They were the good old days.
As we got older, and studied more subjects at school, we entered more and more divisions. These expand to needlecraft, scrap books/projects and photography. Over the years we were still competing against each other and were very successful.
As an adult, I have always entered my local show regardless of where I was living. My number one section was always photography and since my senior years at school I have been relatively successful over the years.
After a couple of years of struggling with the 'judges opinion' I cracked 'the big one' for the area. Yesterday I walked in the gates of the Kiama show ready to watch the wood chopping all day and with very little interest to walk into the pavilion. I didn't want to get my hopes up. I figured that no one had mentioned anything to me so it must have been another dud year. Every year I walk away vowing that I will not take part next year as it becomes a waste of time and money. I was greeted with a congratulations and that I really should go and have a look. As I entered the scrapbooking and card making too, I thought I may have won a couple of things but nothing of significance. But with that comment I realised that I really should go an check it all out.
First stop was the scrapping and cards. My gorgeous niece had taken out a first prize in her junior division for her card and I could do nothing but smile for her. I was so proud. I got to the open section to find a 2nd place in the scrapbooking. That's a 2nd two years in a row for me, and I haven't been able to back up my 1st from three years ago. I was pretty happy with my efforts and figured that was probably the highlight for me this year.
I wandered down the stairs to 'critique' the photography and the judges decision (which having one judge for the whole section is basically judged on personal opinion). One of the very first things I saw when I walked in the door was this...
I had entered the colour human study section, which I had not only won but also taken out the "best exhibit" across the whole colour sections. I was pretty proud and I did shed a tear or two.
As I moved through the photography section, I had also taken out the colour any other subject division and received a highly commended for my colour landscape.
This year I walked away one very happy exhibitor and I will be back next year to try again in all sections. Looking back now that comment that prompted my to go and look was the same as when I won the best exhibit as a junior for a project that I had entered. They are both very special things to win and I am just as proud of them both.
Our local show is always a fantastic event and the day at the wood chopping was made so much more enjoyable with that news.