My father had a saying (typical Cockney English saying): "It is all over bar the shoutin’" This applies to the 10th Annual Golden Tori Awards. They are a thing of the past for this year!

Each and every year, the members of the Delphi Bryce Forum have nominated and voted for the year’s best artwork done using Bryce, in a vast amount of categories (27 this year) It is regarded as the "peoples award" for Bryce artists throughout the world and in my opinion is perhaps the most special and prestigious award of its kind.

A lot of water has passed under the bridge in the past decade: The Bryce software has passed through several versions, been sold, bought, sold again and finally bought by DAZ. The Forum is still there, although it too has changed a lot and we have seen faces come and go. We have lost members to death Don Tatro (aka The Creepy Clown), Debbi Bishop (aka BryceTech), Cyn (aka Skywalker) and some folk have just moved on to other things, and we miss them all. That as we all know is the nature of the Internet and this global village that we call home!

The awards party is held each year on or around the 20th of January after the nominations and voting round that are held prior to this for about 2 months. It take the form of a "virtual" party in the Delphi Forum chatroom. Members don all manner of virtual apparel and virtual drinks and refreshments are served (although some I am sure are in reality imbibing their own preferred beverages – alcoholic and non-alcoholic – in front of their computer monitors)

Every 10 minutes or so the Master of Ceremonies announces the award category and by means of a chat room command opens up a pop up window on the attendees monitors to take them to the announcement of the winner of the category, then everyone chats about the winning entry, contributes all manner of congratulatory phrases and a wonderful "party" atmosphere is created.

Of course you have to remember that this event takes place at the same time all over the world. We have people from different hemispheres, and different time zones. This year Australia was represented, myself from South Africa and then virtually all the time zones of the USA/Canada. For some it was late afternoon the following day and for others late on Saturday night, so imagine the fun that was had when wether, time of day and season were exchanged between the attendees! I had to get up at 4am on Sunday morning to attend the party!

From beginning to the end (well the end of the awards part) a full 5 hours passed! For me it felt truly like 2 hours at the most. However when I started hearing the birds start twittering in the garden and saw the world wake up around me (in South Africa) I realized that a long time had passed and I had enjoyed every minute of it…

Here are a few of the events that occurred during this year’s awards:

  • The "popup" bugs of the Delphi chat room that cause some of our browsers to block the opening of windows and to disconnect us from the chat room every few minutes caused a lot of frustration but some merriment. Martin (GenericHuman) and I (Hamfast) had a contest who could welcome Cyndi (gonedigital) back first when her new Vista computer running Internet Explorer 7 bugged out after every award pop up! It was a frantic game to see who could get the wb Cyndi (Welcome Back Cyndi) first in the chat room once she reappeared.
  • Then there was (Sandy) SndCastie falling on the floor all the time (she says it was from laughter – ROTFL, but I think she was stealing virtual popcorn dropped on the floor by the exuberant award attendees!)
  • Then of course there was our resident southerner RebelYell who seems to have suffered from a bad case of alcohol-induced dyslexia and couldn’t type a single word correctly! Some of his spellings – deliberate or genuine mistakes were quite hilarious! Of course he frightened some of the visiting guest with his own "rebel yells" typed in capital letters in the chat room!
  • RebelYell wasn’t the only person with "fumble fingers". Our hostess and Master of Ceremonies, Rosemary Regan (rosemaryr) had to have several attempts to spell the word "small" before the hobbit assisted her and pointed out the "M" on the bottom row of the keyboard! She said it was that she was tired and stressed. I think she had been sipping virtual cocktails behind the curtains on the stage!
  • At times Martin (GenericHuman) reminding us in grandfatherly tones to …….sip……. the drinks slowly, but then frightening everyone with his "slam" and he slammed the glass down after downing it! Poor Cyndi (GoneDigital) had to have the loud "….sip….slam!" explained to her.
  • Plenty of *duck* tape was handed out to help attendees with the Delphi popup bug, and all the time Hamfast was like a little Jack Russel terrier, in and out, with silly jokes and jibes dished out to all including some inane joke about ducks flying upside down that drew a few polite "LOLs" and giggles from the crowd! It was early morning for me and I had way too much coffee and was definitely on a caffeine buzz!
  • We had some special guests with us. The winners of each category had been secretly contacted and invited to attend with promises that "it would be a special evening". Some had responded with enthusiastic "I will most certainly attend" others had prior commitments and had to decline the invitation. GoneDigital and Meski (Cyndi and Bob) were both visiting the forum for the first time, and received a hearty welcome and congratulations on their awards.There was a lot of e-mails going back and forth in the background to help them set up their browsers and to assit in logging in to the chat room.
  • Rosemary, who doffed two hats for the whole 5 hours, running the award ceremony and acting as MC, and then as a ordinary guest won a well-deserved Tori award for the "Most Helpful Person" even though she hinted that the voting was rigged, I can assure all that she won hands down and was by far the "popular choice". I think few people actually appreciate the amount of work that goes into organizing and running such an event!
  • Darlisa Riggs (Dar) paid us a visit from Utah. She works for DAZ and hinted at the upcoming Hexagon and improved Bryce documentation (which is the best I have seen since AuntiAlias’s Real World Bryce 4)

This year there were some closely-contested categories with, in some case, only a single vote separating the winner from the runner-up. In other categories there were some clear winners. This year’s WOW image was won by Ron Harrison for his "Violets & Brook Trout" image which drew gasps of astonishment and "wows" from all quarters. It is amazing to see what some artists can do with Bryce! His image was no exception. The Best New Brycer and Most Improved Artist awards drew equal reaction, keeping in mind that these are new artists who haven’t been working with Bryce for a long time!

This year’s winners: