Sculpture artist awarded inaugural prize for medieval creation

IMPRESSIVE: Sculpture artist Sam Bloomfield with his award-winning stag's head at the Trentham Easter Art and Craft Show. Photo: Lachlan Bence

IMPRESSIVE: Sculpture artist Sam Bloomfield with his award-winning stag's head at the Trentham Easter Art and Craft Show. Photo: Lachlan Bence

GLENLYON SCULPTURE artist Sam Bloomfield picked up two esteemed prizes for his medieval creations at the Trentham Easter Art and Craft Show.

Bloomfield, who created three separate works and was awarded for his impressive stag's head, took home both Best In Show and the inaugural Matthew Harding Technical Excellence Award.

He works full time an an armourer, which he was inspired to try his hand at after meeting the armourer for the Lord of The Rings films, Stu Johnson, in the early 2000s while at art school.

He later undertook an informal apprenticeship under Johnson's guidance.

Bloomfield has spent many years refining his skills and creating pieces with medieval influences and has gone on to create props for a number of films himself. He also spent more than three years working with Harding at his studio.

"I wanted to enter when I heard there was a prize in Matt's name. It means a lot to win it because he was obsessed with excellence.

"He was more than just a boss, he was a friend," he said. "There are people that are artists in one way but he could turn his hand to anything; wood, stone, metal, paper and he always had faith it would work. He would do whatever it took to pull off the vision in his head."

The pieces Bloomfield submitted to the art show were based on Norse Mythology with the stag's head requiring about two months of intense effort to complete. He desired to empower the horses beneath armour.

"It is the concept of horses wearing armour and making them more than the gleaming metals they are wearing," he said.

Bloomfield, who also works as a blacksmith, with jewellery and with leather, likened armouring to dressmaking.

"You pattern make over a form and you work it out as best you can because you're working with metal. Leather, on the other hand, can be stretched and stamped with impressions."

On display next to Bloomfield's work was a portrait of the late David Bryant, by artist Al Dickerson, which will be gifted to his widow, Janine.

The art show is one of the biggest regional art shows in Victoria but this year exceeded all expectations in attracting record entries and visitors.

With 355 artworks entered by 155 artists, there was a variety of different works from sketches, watercolours, paintings and sculpture on display.