James Crouchet crouchet at infinity.ccsi.com
Wed Mar 29 11:02:16 PST 1995

Let me start by saying that I do not know who wrote the original message 
here.  It smacks of the Litch, but I don't know because my mail system is 
insulated from his rantings by a handy auto-delete.

Still, here is your answer, though you undoubtedly won't like it.

Heraldry is an art form.  It has a certian look to it that one learns by 
looking at a lot of heraldry. The rules don't really matter, they are 
just an attempt to describe the look. Landscape and 3-D art are not 
heraldry for the same reason that a photograph is not cubism and that 
cubism is not realism. Because they are something else.

The real focus of your arguements seems to be on the USE of heraldry as a
form of personal expression in the SCA. To which I say use whatever you
want to use. The reason most of us use heraldry to identify ourselves is
because it looks right (period). If this is too restrictive for you then
go with whatever you feel you need. Some folks find they cannot stand
period clothes and must wear blue jeans under their t-tunic.  Yes, it is a
bit distracting to the rest of us and will undoubtedly garnish a few
disparaging comments, but if you must, you must. 

What I will not do is call blue jeans Tudor, nor will I call landscape art
heraldic art and you cannnot make me with all the nasty comments in the

Have a nice day!


On Wed, 29 Mar 1995, Pug wrote:

> > >Landscape.  The Sun coming up over the trees with a lake to the left.
> > >This is art, but not heraldry.
> > Why is this objectionable?
> > Is there any real, valid, reason why something should not look like landscape?
> As a complete guess, I'd go with 1) conflict of metal/metal or color/color,
> and 2) too busy.
> I don't know much about heraldry, but what I do understand would be that
> you want it to be as simple as possible in order to be easily
> recognized. As well, is there an actual period heraldric term for
> everything you do when doing landscape? I doubt it.
> > >3-D art.  Heraldry is not 3-D. Nuff Said.
> > Not by a damn sight NEARLY enough said. There are examples in mundane
> > heraldry of 3D (though they are modern).
> Guess that means it is heraldry, but not as far as the SCA is concerned.
> (It wouldn't surprise me that people have gone to 3-d in modern times,
> especially to avoid conflicts.)
> > The only reasonalbe objection i have heard to
> > it is that it is not a period practice.
> This sould be a good enough reason, and probably documented as the
> reason, and not that it's not heraldry.
> > >Too many "natural" charges. Natural roses, tigers, lions, etc. take away
> > >from the heraldic look of a device.  There is a heraldic form for these
> > >items for a reason. Use them and your devices will look more heraldic.
> > What reason IS there not to use natural charges? because it makes it look too
> > much like a picture? Why is that so bad.
> The stated reason was "too many", not "not at all". I think the problem
> here would be recognition from afar. Heraldry is still a form of
> identification from afar, despite the fact that most people who use it
> aren't fighters. Arms are a wonderful way to mark your encampment for
> example.
> > >Too many charges.
> > >Keep your charges recognizeable.
> > >Limit the details.
> > These three actually are good and useful, but they are also increadibly
> > subjective. I have heard all three used to shoot down devices for
> > reasons which have seemed a lot more related to disliking the person than
> > the device.
> I have "heard" of this as well. I've also "heard" them used to shoot
> down what is valid heraldry, but on the edge of silliness.
> Ciao,
> -- 
> Phelim Uhtred Gervase | "I want to be called COTTONTIPS. There is something 
> Barony of Bryn Gwlad  |  graceful about that lady. A young woman bursting with 
> House Flaming Dog     |  vigor. She blinked at the sudden light. She writes
> pug at arlut.utexas.edu  |  beautiful poems. When ever shall we meet again?"

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