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I believe my post was merely to address the designation and not to imply that anyone be barred from competition. I for one love to see a competition that is flooded with entries and I like seeing someone that strives to push their level to improve.

 

I completely understood that, and was merely trying to stimulate discussion. ::):

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Anne do you have a count of how many medals of each level were handed out? Also how many Sophie Trophies are awarded? I know there are three best in show but I kind of missed alot after winning the second gold which was unexpected.

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WOW! You came away with a totally different feeling than I did.

 

I have to disagree, I want the pros and staff to stay in. Because when I win a Sophie, I don't want the "comments overheard at reaperCon" to read, "Well, yeah, Chip won a Sophie...because Derek couldn't enter one."

 

To be the best...you gotta beat the best. And I can bet you the people that won Sophies and other awards didn't enter speed paints. I put about 12 hours into mine, and others have put far more than that in. Maybe that would be another category of speed paints, but I figure you'd have to do that there at the Con, otherwise someone could enter a mini with 30 hours of work on it and call it a speed paint.

 

PS: I didn't understand your comment about not painting in the same style.

 

PPS: Oh, and your comment of the judges showing preference to Paint Club...thanks, now I'm back to not believing in my skill. I've attended one PClub. Maybe that's why I rated bronze. (said in jest) GAW!!!!!!

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Yeah I agree with Chip on some points. Maybe having independent judges I can see that being a reasonable request but then who is considered "independent"?

 

I put 40 hours into my Isabeau at least and another 25 into Capricorn--not speed paints for me at all and pieces I was darn proud of.

 

Maya, I think a lot of your complaints are invalid. All of the things you saw were completely different from what I and apparently Chip saw. I thought it was well run--smooth getting the entries into the competition, smooth getting them out and everyone knew where to go to find the entries as well. The way they judge I can't comment because I'm not privy to what the judges say, think, or feel about a piece.

 

I also don't understand the whole "style" comments. I feel like I have a very unconventional style--one that a lot of people don't like in fact. Yet I did well this year. Not a guarantee that I'll do well next year.

 

Would it make a difference if people didn't know who's entries were who's? I think that's what a lot of the conversation is boiling down to--people being awarded for stuff because they are the "Reaper in-crowd". Anne could accept the minis from people and put them into the room with only ticket numbers and no names attached to them. That way people won't know who painted what for the most part. And the names should be kept secret from the judges? Would that make a difference to people?

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WOW! You came away with a totally different feeling than I did.

 

I have to disagree, I want the pros and staff to stay in. Because when I win a Sophie, I don't want the "comments overheard at reaperCon" to read, "Well, yeah, Chip won a Sophie...because Derek couldn't enter one."

 

To be the best...you gotta beat the best. And I can bet you the people that won Sophies and other awards didn't enter speed paints. I put about 12 hours into mine, and others have put far more than that in. Maybe that would be another category of speed paints, but I figure you'd have to do that there at the Con, otherwise someone could enter a mini with 30 hours of work on it and call it a speed paint.

 

PS: I didn't understand your comment about not painting in the same style.

 

PPS: Oh, and your comment of the judges showing preference to Paint Club...thanks, now I'm back to not believing in my skill. I've attended one PClub. Maybe that's why I rated bronze. (said in jest) GAW!!!!!!

 

 

You can not "Beat the best" if there is no true competition. According to Anne this is not a competition. A comp is comparing peoples work against each other. Anne insists that this is an open contest in which you are judged against a standard only except for the competition for the trophies. Meg insists that it is a competition in her posts, which implies that you are judged against other people's work. Maybe they failed to clearly understand what the folks who invented the open system was trying to tell them. It is either all open or all competition, you can't have both like they are trying to do. You should have been able to enter the contest for the trophies and win one on merit. however, the winners were either judges, from the same group of close friends that were judges, or painted in the same style and knew the judges. Eliminating these people from the trophy contest, into a staff category does not reduce the amount of real comp you would get in a contest because there were some excellent entries from non staff or judges. What it does remove is the temptation to award your friends who paint in your style, that you know, who painted for Reaper and any feelings of obligation to award the paintjob Reaper paid for. You can't "beat the best" in the trophies if you have to compete with all of that.

 

PS. If you don't understand the different styles of painting go to CMoN (cool mini or not) and take a look around the site. You will notice Games Workshops section tends to one method of painting, very broad highlights, not a lot of blending and designed to look good from a distance. Look at the winners in th catageroies at Reapercon this year, this is what I mean by the same style. This is different from others on the site. You will also notice historicals which look lifelike as well as historicals that look very hyper pigmented and "overdone" compared to what the average person looks like walking around. You will notice anime like paintjobs, etc, etc. All of these are different styles. There is more than one way to paint a miniature. :)

 

PPS If you are in the local paint club to judges, there is always the temptation to award someone in your club more than someone else simply because you know that persons struggles, etc over someone you have never met.

 

Maya~

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Maya it is still a competition but what a lot of people are failing to understand is that there are three layers to this competition.

 

The first part of it is that you are being judged to a standard. You meet the standard then you are awarded with the corresponding medal.

 

The second part is to look at all of the entries to determine who gets the Reaper Sophie Trophies. All of the Reaper entries are then compared against each other and the best ones win. (How is that not part of a competition?)

 

The third is that everyone gets to vote for the best minis in the competition. Three Best in Shows are determined in this manner. This means that the con-goers choose which ones they like best and are comparing the entries against each other. (Again, how is this not part of a competition?)

 

Also, knowing the judges being a basis for a complaint is silly. I met Doug before the judging was happening. So just because I know who he is and had a conversation with him for an hour means that he is going to judge me as being a better painter than the rest? Where is the logic in that. A lot of us know each other from conventions but I am not close friends with many painters who also do judging. It is not logical to say that just because you know someone (and know in what sense? having met for an hour?) you are going to come out better than others.

 

Maya, you know some of the people who were judging don't you?

 

Yes there is more than one way to paint a mini. I personally understand that there are different styles but what I don't understand is saying that you don't paint in the Reaper Style. What is the Reaper Style? Reaper Con attracts better painters, I'll admit that. Reaper Con is more of a painting than a gaming convention anyway. So shouldn't the paint quality be better? Everyone does have a different style--I tend toward the cartoony yet well blended look. I know that and heck that's even how I draw/paint in 2d.

 

I saw a lot of pieces that had different styles. Unfortunately I haven't seen pictures of the winners at Reaper Con yet so I can't say that there was one style over another for sure. But there were a lot of awards given out and they couldn't have all been done in one style. Not from what I saw. In fact I didn't see any two minis that looked alike to me in terms of style.

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but what would you limit? And wouldn't that in and of itself be discouraging to people who would otherwise want to enter? I mean I've already got three medals but no Sophie Trophies. So if we limit the medals then we also limit the number of people who CAN enter and in turn a lot of people won't want to enter. I don't think this would be a good move either. I know that if Reaper ever implemented something like this I would stop entering.

When I'm talking about limits, I'm refering to just the awards like the Sophies and Best of Shows where the entries are actually competing against each other. Since you're only being judged against yourself on the medals, someone else winning 100 of them doesn't hurt your chances to win one, therefore no reason to limit those.

 

The same doesn't apply to the Sophies and Best of Show awards. Take a look at your own Best of Show award. Now for the sake of argument, let's say you win Best of Show next year. And the year after that. Don't you think people will start to resent you for winning three years in a row? You're deluded if you don't. Now, most people would recognize that, and self limit themselves - take themselves out of the running after they've won two or three, to give some else a chance. But not everyone will - I know more than one person with the personality to just keep on pushing for more wins - it becomes more of the ego boost than the spirit of the competition.

 

I don't have an easy answer on where to actually put those limits, though. It's somewhat easy for the Best of Show - IMHO, the winner of a Best in Show two years in a row shouldn't be eligible for the Best in Show award the third year, but that should in no way prevent them from getting more medals or even a Sophie despite being ineligible to win Best in Show for that third year, nor should it limit them the fourth year.

 

Sophies is a little hard to determine. How many Sophies are too many? 10? 20? 30? Who currently has the most Sophies? How many are awarded each year? IMHO, with no facts and figures to work from*, personally think that a single person having 30 Sophies is ridiculous. I don't think anyone right now has that many, but who's to say that won't be the case in 10 years time?

 

You argue that limits kill the competition, I'm simply pointing out the opposite is also true. The trick is to find the middle ground. Moving to open format is part of the solution - since Kris & Anne announced it for their respective cons, I've become interested in entering painting contests again - something I haven't been interesting in since watching the same people win the Pacificon painting contests year after year in the 80s/90s.

 

----

 

* I tried to see if I could work out who had been awarded the most Sophies - if the data is out there, it's very hard to find - I couldn't find any type of comprehensive winners lists for each Rcon on the Reaper site. I think it would behoove Reaper to compile those lists and put them all in a single area, if only to help combat the impression that certain people "always win".

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Thanks everyone for all your input, even/especially the negatives. It will help me a lot in troubleshooting the competition as we go on. ::): I know that this is a volatile topic that people feel strongly about, and thank you for keeping things friendly!

 

I would like to say (in response to your comment above, Chip) that we have alternate judges on the five-person medals team. I know Nic from Paint Club and have helped him, so when his work came up, I stepped out of the judging team and called for an alternate who didn't know Nic or his work. So don't worry about being associated with Paint Club. :;): The alternates are there so that no one judges their own piece or any other piece they feel they can't be objective about.

 

I'd also like to say that we do mix up the judging team somewhat. Usually I ask two local historical model painters to judge, along with myself and two Reaper painters who have a lot of judging experience. I find that this gives us a good mix of opinions on different styles--the historical and Euro styles are very different from the U.S. and British styles, for example. This year one of our historical judges fell through, so I asked Kris Marquardt from Colorado to judge as he has a lot of experience with historicals, army painting, and smaller scales, as well as fantasy/sci-fi.

 

I'd like to say also, in case people weren't aware, that of the five person team, only three votes are counted. The highest and lowest score are dropped to prevent a strong opinion one way or another from swinging the result.

 

Valloa, I am truly sorry that you feel the competition is so biased. I try to choose judges who I personally trust to do the best they can in being fair and objective, or who are part of a different discipline so they have fewer preconceptions (thus the inclusion of historical modelers as judges). Because I want people who I trust, I do choose people who I know--who are thus associated with someone at Reaper. For monetary reasons, we have to utilize locals or people we are already bringing down. The latter are inevitably staff painters, because that's the point of the Con. This may mean that we can never be truly unbiased, but I'd like to think that people like Derek and Laszlo are about as honest and fair as painters can be when they judge.

 

Got painting to get back to now--more comments welcome, if I don't chip in after everything it's merely as I'm busy, but I DO appreciate it!

 

--Anne ::):

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When I'm talking about limits, I'm refering to just the awards like the Sophies and Best of Shows where the entries are actually competing against each other. Since you're only being judged against yourself on the medals, someone else winning 100 of them doesn't hurt your chances to win one, therefore no reason to limit those.

 

The same doesn't apply to the Sophies and Best of Show awards. Take a look at your own Best of Show award. Now for the sake of argument, let's say you win Best of Show next year. And the year after that. Don't you think people will start to resent you for winning three years in a row? You're deluded if you don't.

 

No I know that some people would resent that but this happens in any competition. Especially at Games Day and Gen Con. You know the best way to combat this? GET BETTER! Unseat the three time champ or whatever title they may hold. If you start making rules like this and someone who has won Best in Show at Reaper Con is kicked out should we not also bar someone who holds multiple Slayer Swords?

 

I mean, where do you draw the line when you are talking about banning/limiting people.

 

A problem with what you are suggesting though Kristof is that the con-goers vote for the best in show. How would it look if those casting the votes came into a room and the mini they planned on voting for now had a sign over it saying, DQ'd for Best in Show. I think that would cause some scandal and maybe a little outrage.

 

I know I wouldn't be happy about it if I saw that happen.

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Yeah I agree with Chip on some points. Maybe having independent judges I can see that being a reasonable request but then who is considered "independent"?

 

I put 40 hours into my Isabeau at least and another 25 into Capricorn--not speed paints for me at all and pieces I was darn proud of.

 

Maya, I think a lot of your complaints are invalid. All of the things you saw were completely different from what I and apparently Chip saw. I thought it was well run--smooth getting the entries into the competition, smooth getting them out and everyone knew where to go to find the entries as well. The way they judge I can't comment because I'm not privy to what the judges say, think, or feel about a piece.

 

I also don't understand the whole "style" comments. I feel like I have a very unconventional style--one that a lot of people don't like in fact. Yet I did well this year. Not a guarantee that I'll do well next year.

 

Would it make a difference if people didn't know who's entries were who's? I think that's what a lot of the conversation is boiling down to--people being awarded for stuff because they are the "Reaper in-crowd". Anne could accept the minis from people and put them into the room with only ticket numbers and no names attached to them. That way people won't know who painted what for the most part. And the names should be kept secret from the judges? Would that make a difference to people?

 

 

Hey Meg

 

"Independent" would be someone who has no affiliation with Reaper, the instructors or any guest clubs. I'm sure Reaper could find many people who fit this description to come judge. Or even people who don't paint. You don't have to paint to appreciate good paint jobs. If you did, museums wouldn't exist. Most museum directiors have taken courses in management of museums not art course, yet are considered perfectly expert to judge what gets in their museum.

 

I have said nothing about your miniatures. However, speed painted or not, again time spent does not equal quality.

 

My "complaints" are on the whole, mostly observations. Apparently you were not observant enough, since most of your time was probably spent socializing. I have been organizing events since I was 12 years old and it is a habit of mine to observe everything that goes on wherever I am. When asked I still consult on events and as such I observe everything from whats being run to peoples comments about what is going on. My post above was in answer to Anne's desire to figure out why people weren't happy. It didn't touch on what was right, because she didn't ask for comments on what was right. YES, take in was excellent and professional. Pick-up was easy, but not as professional. The boneyard was run extremely professionally all con. The discussions I had with certain Reaper staff were excellent, informative and professional. The auctioneer was professional. The helpers at the auction for the most part were, but there were instances where they were not. The behavior of one was extremely childish and reflected very badly on Reaper to many people at the auction. So Meg, this is not a dig at Reaper.

 

Your comments about style...well have you noticed that your style is not unconventional? It is in the style that won last year and this year, even though there were much better styles available in this years showing. You live in Denton, go compare your miniatures to what won and what is in Reapers display cases. You will not see much difference.

 

"

Would it make a difference if people didn't know who's entries were who's? I think that's what a lot of the conversation is boiling down to--people being awarded for stuff because they are the "Reaper in-crowd". Anne could accept the minis from people and put them into the room with only ticket numbers and no names attached to them. That way people won't know who painted what for the most part. And the names should be kept secret from the judges? Would that make a difference to people?"

 

No it wouldnt make a differnce, in this case, because of the people who are judging. It is done that way in other contests if they use independant judges. Other painting contests that do that and don't use indepenant judges still have the same problems because you can spot a specific persons paintjob a mile away. For example, I knew yours across the room, I could tell Derek's entry, etc. All this without reading the tags. You can't have a properly judged blind contest if people know each other or how to spot others paintjobs.

 

Maya~

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Hey Meg

 

"Independent" would be someone who has no affiliation with Reaper, the instructors or any guest clubs. I'm sure Reaper could find many people who fit this description to come judge. Or even people who don't paint. You don't have to paint to appreciate good paint jobs.

 

 

So what happens the next year then Maya? You can't use those same judges and you have to find new ones. What happens when there's no one left?

 

Saying that you don't have to know how to paint in order to appreciate good paint jobs--sure to a degree though and then the painting wouldn't be the thing getting judged it would be another version of CoolMiniorNot just in person. There is already a format for that kind of format--just go to their website and enter their competitions. Reaper is different and trying to bring a different format to the fantasy/sci fi miniature arena.

 

If this happened I would not take Reaper Con seriously at all.

 

In a perfect utopian society there would be absolutely ZERO bias in any competition. Unfortunately humans are biased animals. We make judgements about things on first glance. As soon as we see something our brains do the subconscious calculations and tell us whether or not we like something, someone or the situation we are in.

 

As for whether or not you are taking a dig at Reaper, I never said you were. You are entitled to your opinions and so am I. Personally, I'm not upset about anything you are saying, just responding with my point of view and my experience.

 

I guess all I can say is that for those people who don't like the Reaper Con format shouldn't enter into it. I am going to stop going to GD because of this and start going back to Gen Con. I am hoping I'll have a better time there and maybe I'll have a chance at winning something. I don't know until I try but at least I'll have a bit more freedom there than at Games Day.

 

I will continue to go to Reaper Con as well. Good peoples, good entries put into the competition and I always have an enjoyable time when I'm there.

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"Maya it is still a competition but what a lot of people are failing to understand is that there are three layers to this competition. The first part of it is that you are being judged to a standard. You meet the standard then you are awarded with the corresponding medal. The second part is to look at all of the entries to determine who gets the Reaper Sophie Trophies. All of the Reaper entries are then compared against each other and the best ones win. (How is that not part of a competition?)The third is that everyone gets to vote for the best minis in the competition. Three Best in Shows are determined in this manner. This means that the con-goers choose which ones they like best and are comparing the entries against each other. (Again, how is this not part of a competition?)"

 

I understand that perfectly. Perhaps you need to reread my post. :)

"Also, knowing the judges being a basis for a complaint is silly. I met Doug before the judging was happening. So just because I know who he is and had a conversation with him for an hour means that he is going to judge me as being a better painter than the rest? Where is the logic in that. A lot of us know each other from conventions but I am not close friends with many painters who also do judging. It is not logical to say that just because you know someone (and know in what sense? having met for an hour?) you are going to come out better than others. Maya, you know some of the people who were judging don't you? "

 

No it is the judges knowing you. And yes, having a conversation with a judge just before they go judge is suspect, duh. Now you are being deliberately obtuse. You know what I mean. As for knowing. Have I said a few words to anyone, yep. Would I say I'm buddy buddy with the judges, newp. But you know and visit with a few quite often don't you, get mentoring and the like? I believe you are missing my entire point and taking my original post as if I aimed it at you, which makes me say "Huh? What the..."

 

Yes there is more than one way to paint a mini. I personally understand that there are different styles but what I don't understand is saying that you don't paint in the Reaper Style. What is the Reaper Style? Reaper Con attracts better painters, I'll admit that. Reaper Con is more of a painting than a gaming convention anyway. So shouldn't the paint quality be better? Everyone does have a different style--I tend toward the cartoony yet well blended look. I know that and heck that's even how I draw/paint in 2d.

 

You have just answered your own question.

 

I saw a lot of pieces that had different styles. Unfortunately I haven't seen pictures of the winners at Reaper Con yet so I can't say that there was one style over another for sure. But there were a lot of awards given out and they couldn't have all been done in one style. Not from what I saw. In fact I didn't see any two minis that looked alike to me in terms of style.

 

If you had not, by your own admission, paid attention to the other winners you would have seen what won and what didn't. By your own admission you didn't see very much. No one who was there needs to wait until the pictures come out to know that the winners are similar in style, as they were last year, more closer to GWs style of painting. From Anne's original postings on the rules and open information all styles were supposed to be given the same weight when judged. This is why the complaints were there, because this was not the case.

 

Maya~

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Your comments about style...well have you noticed that your style is not unconventional? It is in the style that won last year and this year, even though there were much better styles available in this years showing.

Emphasis mine -

 

Maya, you're kind of shooting yourself in the foot here. You're arguing for more objectiveness, while apparently unable to be objective yourself. If different styles should be able to compete objectively, how can one be better than another?

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As someone who comes from the historical side of things, I have been hearing many of these complaints for years, and really I have come to two conclusions, 1) The Open System is the only fair way to go, kudos to Reaper for usng it (and kudos to Anne for mentioning Shep Paine and Doug Cohen) and 2) you aren't going to change peoples' minds, if they want to find fault with something, they will. WRT 54mm (or larger) being easier to paint than minis; while I am amazed at what can be accomplished with minis, I say try a 54mm or larger, it's a whole dfferent ball game.

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So what happens the next year then Maya? You can't use those same judges and you have to find new ones. What happens when there's no one left?

 

Saying that you don't have to know how to paint in order to appreciate good paint jobs--sure to a degree though and then the painting wouldn't be the thing getting judged it would be another version of CoolMiniorNot just in person. There is already a format for that kind of format--just go to their website and enter their competitions. Reaper is different and trying to bring a different format to the fantasy/sci fi miniature arena.

 

If this happened I would not take Reaper Con seriously at all.

 

 

Urm...you do what true art contests and most form of creative contests do...you get other people. Unless the world ends, you are not going to run out of judges!!

 

No, it would not be another version of CMoN because you have a set group of educated people judging each time. Reapers form of "different" is what people are saying they don't like in the complaints.

 

If you look at the complaints, there are already people NOT taking the Reaper Con contest seriously at all.

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