The Official Infoweave Presence of Alex van der Wijst
VANWIJST.COM Show down at the van der Wijst corral -who will decorate their egg to achieve ovular glory? The rules are simple: two eggs, two hours, too bad Ryely! Read on to find out how this year's competition went down.

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EASTER 2008
The annual easter egg competition was a highly competitive affair this year. Trophies were introduced: gold, silver, bronze and ....white. What is white, exactly? The others correspond to minerals of descending value as determined by supply and demand in an open market system. So white could be something virtually worthless and... white. Snow, maybe? Dandruff? Dandelion fluff? At any rate, the introduction of material rewards made the competition that much more intense, resulting in some spectacularly creative entries!
SNOWMAN by Robin. Let's start with something light and cute. The artist cleverly noted that an egg divided into three segments closely resembles three snowballs, and the technical execution of the piece is flawless. Where the work lost ground with the judges is with its use of discordant materials and colours. Nobody builds a snowman with bright blue pipe-cleaners these days, for example, and nobody in the world -outside of Sudbury, anyway - would ever stoop to rolling yellow snow into balls.
ROADKILL by Robin. First out of the hacks this year was Robin, who created both of his entries in less than 35 minutes -an impressive feat by itself. In this scene a hapless turtle -a beast well suited to shell art, by the way -has been splattered over a road surface by an overly aggressive motorist. A vivid depiction of the life and death struggles of nature as it comes into contact with an indifferent humanity, the artist nonetheless forgot that most famous of tortoise adages: slow and steady wins the race! This entry was too rushed, from the uncoloured shell to the yellow pavement, and the judges knew it.
CALIFORNIA RASIN by Marty. This is the first time in egg competition history that an egg has been placed on a surf board, but with this entry that is where the pioneering spirit ends. Corporate intellectual property has never done well in this competition, no matter how jazzed-up and mellow, baby. Besides, aren't rasins supposed to be wrinkled? The judges just didn't buy it.
REALISTIC BABY by Bob. Unable to win with self-portraits, the artist has moved into sculpting other family members. While this representation of baby Magdalen is technically accurate in terms of both hue and dialogue, it lacks the inherent appeal of a more whimsical creation. Besides, there is still voter apathy at babies in general since the competition of '06 was won by one -do your research man!
WELL TRAINED SEAL by Fern. This piece was well received by reviewers, but generated little enthusiasm with the judges -interesting, given that both were in fact the same people. The work is impressive in that it creatively uses an egg in a technically sophisticated way. That being said, the piece could have benefited immensely from some colour and decoration. It's a shame to see a good idea like this not achieve its full potential, but on the other hand it leaves a window of opporunity for others to sneak in and steal the prize.
EAGLE ATTACKING ROBIN'S EGG by Connor. This entry confused the judges too much to garner much support. Some thought it was a flying dinosaur looking after its egg, while others thought it was an evil butterfly blowing a bubble, and still others thought it was a giant space alien attempting to devour planet Earth, or possibly Neptune. The revelation that it is in fact an eagle (the symbol of imperial aggression) attacking Robin's Egg (the artist's father being named Robin) raised further questions about filial disobediance. Latent feelings of oppression usually bode well for an artist's fame, but in this case it was just too far out there for the judges to vote for.
HEDGEHOG by Jen. Now this piece is dangerously cute, but only when viewed from the right angle. Who couldn't fall in love with those googly eyes and that cute little tongue! When seen from above, however, this piece looks a lot more menacing, with its spikes arrayed like soldiers ready to do battle. Unfortunately the eggs are judged on a table, over which most of the judges tower, so it was the threatening side of the piece that they saw. So much of success is being in the right pace at the right time....
UNCLE CHRIS by Ryely. If you squint at an egg just right it does kind of resemble Uncle Chris. It's a tough gig being the only bald person in the family, but to wear the label of egg-head to boot? To be fair Chris doesn't have that Pericles point-thing happening at the appex of his head: if the egg were inverted so that its rounder side was up then it would probably have been more convincing. Lack of colour and the historical stigma of human portraits made this effort a no go.
TYPICAL FERN PAINTING by Alex. Opperating under the assumption that some of the judges were out to purposefully not vote for him, the artist undertook a subtle campaign of subterfuge to disguise his work so that it might be mistaken for someone else's. In this case the artist carefully mimicked the style and content and (slightly less subtlely...) the signature of a pre-established artist within the family. That Group of Seven formula is never out of fashion, or so he thought. It turns out that the egg judges just weren't interested in another scenic landscape featuring the rugged Canadian Shield. If only we had more tourists on the voting panel....
GREEG AND PEEG by Chris. The piece that will live in infamy for so long as the tradition of the annual egg decorating competition is continued. The "gimicK" of this creation was supposed to be the fact that both of these jolly creatures shared the word "egg" concealed within their name -a clever addition, since works have been rarely titled in years past, creating much confusion amongst the judges. The scheme fell apart, however, when the artist failed to pass spelling in the second grade. Better luck next year, champ!
SHERLOCK EGG by Bob. Yet another person portrait? Don't yawn yet: this one is better than most. A matching cape and detective's cap, a red bow tie, a magnifying glass and a pipe with flame -the attention to detail is truly impressive! Sure he could also be mistaken for a wizard with an oversized glass paddle for a wand, but this work definitely shows improvement over past efforts. The academy looks forward to seeing continuing growth from this artist in the future.
PROTECTIVE MOTHER DRAGON by Fern. This piece was truly inspired, although it was ultimately shut out of the awards. The serpentine curl of the dragon into a defensive stance, all the while carefully sheltering her egg, is the very picture of maternal instinct. Where the work disappointed was in the details: everyone knows only Chicken-Dragons lay white eggs, and only reverse vampires have bright white bat wings. The discord between the vision and the execution of this piece is particularly unfortunate, as it was for a time considered to be the front runner. Remember: shoe-shiners and real winners both like to add that extra bit of polish.
SPIDER by Jen. This is a well executed piece. The eggshell has been cleverly augmented to create a realistically shaped spider, while the fuzzy legs and threatening pose work well with the theme. The range of sparkly eyes is especially inspired. The festive colour scheme, though both pretty and appropriate for easter, seems a bit out of place on such a fearsome monster, however, and the whimsical webbing jars with the clean, straight lines seen in nature's spider webs. In the end this piece garnered a lot of support, but not enough to make it to the podium.
EGGS AHOY by Ryely. How did this entry not win?!? There are cannons, a plank, a pirate flag, even a ship's hold! Not to mention dynamic and expressive characters, and, if I'm not very much mistaken, a poop deck. I mean, a bloody poop deck! Attention to detail in the construction phase makes this scene, while the lack of decorative detail sank the ship in the end. We'd all be scared of a pirate attack, up until we noticed that they hadn't removed the bar code from the side of their ship -it would just be hard to take seriously. Better luck next year!
THE WINNERS
WHITE TROPHY WINNER!!!!

WEDDING by Clare. Playing on the judges anticipation of an upcoming family wedding, Clare snuck onto the podium, if only just. Appropriately she won the mysterious white award, a symbolic alignment that has the suspicious whiff of vote-fixing. But credit where credit is due: a unique and yet authentic looking bridal gown and a sophisticated tuxedo with top hat have all the elements of a winning entry, and it's not as if the judges haven't been swayed by topical entries before. Way to play the system, Clare!
BRONZE TROPHY WINNER!!!! (TIE)

SNOW-DOO by Marty. A cutesy little snow-riding vehicle drove through the judges hearts and up to the podium this year. Nice details include the drive-track, fuzzy handlebars and a cushy seat, but the primary colour scheme and adorable "Little-Engine-That-Could" face pushed this entry over the top. Bravo!
BRONZE TROPHY WINNER!!!! (TIE)

EGG TRAIN by Connor. This entry impressed a lot of judges. Sure, the conductor looks half-boiled, but the car itself is very well put together. The industrial-era heavyness of the machinery, the tarnished surfaces and that delicate steering cog all contributed this work's success. It's hard to notice just looking at it, but the car has actually been seemlessly fashioned out of two separate wheel brackets. Fortunately, the artist had the foresight to show all the judges the separate pieces before hand as he subtly asked for advice on how to join them, making the end result all the more impressive in their minds. Way to sell your work, Con-Man!
SILVER TROPHY WINNER!!!!

THE FOG OF WAR by Kalum. This violent and apocalyptic confrontation is something we've come to expect from the Quentin Tarantino of egg decorating. In this scene a rare red ninja, a bionic robot and a Rambo-esque commando duke it out for martial suppremacy. A toxic green fog shrouds the battle in an eerie myst of surrealism. Two words alone can describe this piece: HARD CORE! Congratulations to the artist.
GOLD TROPHY WINNER!!!!

ST-EGG-OSAURUS FOSSIL by Alex. Well, well! What have we here! The master of oval Deconstructionism has fashioned another masterpiece -one that was understood in its own time, nonetheless. In this piece the artist has cleverly broken an egg up into scores of bones arranged to resemble a dinosaur fossil. A convincing sand background has been augmented by ground up sand-stone with mica-flakes to give the work that gleaming sheen the judges just couldn't ignore. Most important of all is the novelty effect -the artist once again takes egg decorating to strange new places. What will the future hold? You can't even imagine -or if you can, you're apt to beat me next year. Bring on the challengers!
That's it for another year! There's always so much anticipation around the annual competition, it's sad to see it pass. Next year will feature new "themed" rules, to make the competition more spontaneous. I'm sure it will just drive the participants to greater heights of creativity and, most importantly, fun! See you next time -EGG-CELSIOR!!!

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