On the fear of having to prioritize fighting over art

A question to the Kingdom A&S Minister, Master Philip White:

“I am both a fighter and an artist. I am aspiring to become both be a member of the Chivalry and of the Laurel. But people tell me I need to stop doing my art. They tell me if I am made a Laurel first then the Knights will not support me there. What’s the deal?”

A reply from the Minister:

Well. Where to start? Actually. That’s pretty easy.

These people are wrong.

First. You should do what brings you joy. If fighting and arting at the same time brings you joy then you should fight and art at the same time. If pursuing your goal of peerage makes you happy then you should pursue your goal of peerage.

Second. If the Royalty thinks you’re ready to join the Order of the Chivalry then they will offer you membership. Even if you’re already a Laurel, if the Royalty thinks you’re ready to join the Order of the Chivalry then they will offer you membership.

It is really as easy as that.

But, as with all things, it’s never really that easy. And it is always a bit more complicated.

These people are wrong. True. But, what else?

Working towards any peerage is hard. Working towards more than one peerage at the same time? Even harder.

Why?

Because there’s only so much time. Your attention will be split. You can’t help it. You’ll be practicing art when you could be working out at practice. You’ll be fighting in a tourney when you could be at showing at the art’s display. You’ll be teaching a class while you could be fighting for a war point.

You can’t be in two places at the same time. So that’ll just make it all harder.

Harder for you to gain your skill as a fighter. So then harder to prove to others of your skill as a fighter. And then even harder to build relationships with those people.

Harder isn’t a bad thing. And longer isn’t a bad thing. You just need to realize that it will be longer and harder. And that’s okay. As long as that’s your goal.

Remember.

You should do what brings you joy. If fighting and arting at the same time brings you joy then you should fight and art at the same time. If pursuing your goal of peerage makes you happy then you should pursue your goal of peerage.

If you don’t mind how hard it is or how long it takes? Then you can do both at the same time.

But if part of your goals of peerage have a time frame? Then you could consider focusing on one or the other.

And really?

Just have fun.

Work on your goals. Improve your skills. Teach what you’re learning to others. Build relationships with the people who are working on the same goals. Support each other in those pursuits. Serve where you may and volunteer for your groups.

Those are the things that will help you on your path of becoming a Peer.

Remember… Have fun! Learn! Teach!

Your Servant to Command,
~p.w.

On entering A&S competitions when you feel you won’t win

A question to the Kingdom A&S Minister, Master Philip White:

“I’d like to try doing an A&S project for competition, but I’ve learned enough to know that the materials I can afford or find right now are not perfect. Should I enter even if I might not do well?”

A reply from the Minister:

Yes!

Why? Because you said you’d like to try a competition.

So, yes! Please!

Try!

You know what I’ve learned in my time working on arts and sciences projects? Projects are not really “perfect” in the first place. We’re always learning.

We’re finding out ways to better execute our entries. Or we are discovering new avenues of research. Or our skills get better. Or we’re finding new ways to challenge ourselves.

I think many of the people who enter A&S Competitions, or who display their work, could readily tell you many of the ways that they think they could make their work better. And that includes when they would be making substitutions for materials due to cost or access.

That’s okay! That’s a way we could improve. So, enter that competition. And be ready to learn.

Start by reading the rules of your competition. Understand how it is scored so that you know what to expect. Ask questions if you need to. Say up front in your documentation that you’ve made substitutions and why you’ve made them.

And the? Be prepared to not get points for that part of your score. That sounds reasonable, right?

That’s okay to not get all of the possible points. Why? Because you already know why you are received that part of your score. You know it isn’t something personal. And you know it isn’t about the work you’ve done and what you were able to achieve with your work. Because you already have that understanding with your materials. Or, really, any part of your entry that you know you’re still working on to improve.

Instead of focusing on the points, put your focus on that reason that you’re entering.

What’s your goal?

Do you want to teach through your entry?

Then make sure you’re spending your time and effort on your display and your documentation and your conversations with people. Make the most of those teaching opportunity.

Do you want to learn by entering?

Then make sure you’re spending your time and effort asking questions. Then, work or listening, understanding, and taking notes on what to work on. Have conversations with people about your opportunities for growth.

Do you want to win?

Okay. Well. Maybe in that case you wouldn’t want to enter. Yet!

Wanting to win is okay! That’s not the issue. But. Instead? You might want to do another project that could get you closer to the score that could help you win. Or, you might want to wait to enter this project when you can get the more appropriate materials that would help you out with that score.

So, please!

Come. Enter. Share your work.

Enter and display works in progress. Share works that are not perfect. Share works that are your first attempts. Share works that need improvement. Share works that you think are your best efforts.

We want to see all of it!

Remember… Have fun! Learn! Teach!

Your Servant to Command,
~p.w.