Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Wool Power! Navajo Sheepherding Shines at ‘Sheep Is Life’ [20 Photos]

On June 19 and 20, Diné College in Tsaili, Arizona, hosted the Sheep Is Life Celebration. A tribute to Navajo sheepherding and weaving culture, Sheep is Life included demonstrations and workshops  on traditional shearing, skirting, washing, carding, dying, spinning, weaving, felting and other fiber arts. Other attractions included a competitive sheep and wool show, demonstrations of butchering, and plenty of delicious lamb and mutton dishes.

Photography and multimedia company Lizard Light Productions (lizardlight.com) was on hand to document the event; for more scenes of Native cultural and arts events in Arizona, be sure to follow them at facebook.com/lizardlightproductions.

Navajo-Churro sheep show. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Navajo-Churro sheep show. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Presenter and Dine Youth Fiber Apprentice Eliseo Curly. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Presenter and Dine Youth Fiber Apprentice Eliseo Curly. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Aretta Begay, Sheep is Life Celebration coordinator, with a felted wool hat. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Aretta Begay, Sheep is Life Celebration coordinator, with a felted wool hat. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Kee Sheppard with one of his Navajo-Churro sheep. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Kee Sheppard with one of his Navajo-Churro sheep. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Navajo-Churro sheep ram. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Navajo-Churro sheep ram. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

The three judges, Dr. Don Bixby, Tara Roche, and Dr. Lyle McNeal with two of the winning sheep. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

The three judges, Dr. Don Bixby, Tara Roche, and Dr. Lyle McNeal with two of the winning sheep. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Navajo-Churro sheep. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Navajo-Churro sheep. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Judge Dr. Lyle McNeal with Chuck Wales and his grand champion ram. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Judge Dr. Lyle McNeal with Chuck Wales and his grand champion ram. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Roy Kady, on left, Dine Master Sheepherder and Fiber Artist, long-time volunteer with Sheep is Life and teacher/mentor for the Dine Youth Fiber Artist Apprentices. Navajo-Churro wool on the table. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Roy Kady, on left, Dine Master Sheepherder and Fiber Artist, long-time volunteer with Sheep is Life and teacher/mentor for the Dine Youth Fiber Artist Apprentices. Navajo-Churro wool on the table. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Kevin Aspaas, Presenter and Dine Youth Fiber Artist Apprentice. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Kevin Aspaas, Presenter and Dine Youth Fiber Artist Apprentice. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Navajo-Churro sheep wool. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Navajo-Churro sheep wool. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Judge Dr. Lyle McNeal congratulating Sonny Thomas on his winning sheep. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Judge Dr. Lyle McNeal congratulating Sonny Thomas on his winning sheep. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Zachariah Ben, presenter and Dine Youth Fiber Artist Apprentice, demonstrating hand carding. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Zachariah Ben, presenter and Dine Youth Fiber Artist Apprentice, demonstrating hand carding. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Dr. Lyle and Nancy McNeal presenting the Ellder Sheperdess Award to Dorothy Jake, surrounded by her family. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Dr. Lyle and Nancy McNeal presenting the Ellder Sheperdess Award to Dorothy Jake, surrounded by her family. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Shade house at the Sheep is Life Celebration. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Shade house at the Sheep is Life Celebration. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Black Mesa Water Coalition - one of the Sheep is Life Celebration sponsors. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Black Mesa Water Coalition – one of the Sheep is Life Celebration sponsors. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Zephren Anderson, presenter and Dine Youth Fiber Artist Apprentice, in one of his traditional Navajo clothing designs. He is demonstrating a treadle wool spinner. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Zephren Anderson, presenter and Dine Youth Fiber Artist Apprentice, in one of his traditional Navajo clothing designs. He is demonstrating a treadle wool spinner. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Vegetal dyed wool. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Vegetal dyed wool. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Trying her hand at spinning. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Trying her hand at spinning. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Artaysia, David, and Lomahongva greet a sheep. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

Artaysia, David, and Lomahongva greet a sheep. Photo by Lizard Light Productions.

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Wool Power! Navajo Sheepherding Shines at 'Sheep Is Life' [20 Photos]

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