Best practices for art competitions
Tips for a successful art competition entry
For some artists, entering competitions can be thrilling, a chance to cast their art into the world with other artists and see how it stands. You just never know how it will all turn out.
But we all know that competition in the art world is fierce. So what steps can you take to best prepare your work for the challenge?
Yes, I know. We're artists. We live outside the rules. But when entering a competition, realize that you can be bumped for ignoring instructions. Break rules in your artwork, not on your entry form.
Channel your inner Rory Gilmore and pretend like this is a homework assignment and you're aiming for an A+. Print out the entry form, read it a couple times, then highlight the important instructions. Use the form as a checklist, and check and recheck to make sure you haven't missed anything.
Hit all the deadlines. Mark those on your calendar and start submitting a day early, because computers! There's always going to be a glitch or a gremlin in the process. Leave time to work those out.
Playing by the competition rules is part of the sport. Enjoy them.
Visit Making a Mark by Katherine Tyrrell for more tips on entering art competitions
TAKE GOOD PHOTOS
You will be asked for an image of your work, probably an electronic image. Don't throw shade on your own work by submitting sub-par pictures. If you don't have the funds for a professional art photographer (and how many of us do?), here are a few tips for taking your own images.
To learn more about photographing your artwork, visit these websites
How to photograph your artwork
How to photograph your 2D art the right way
Say what now? You got accepted into the show! Yay!!! The next step is to make sure that your artwork is framed beautifully and wired properly. Professional framing, while expensive, will ensure that your work is show-ready. If you must frame your own artwork, here are some tips to make every piece hang straight and true.
InFocus has a page of tips on framing and presentation
Don't take it all too seriously
After all that work, you didn't get accepted. Remember that this isn't a comment on the quality or desirability of your artwork; it just means you didn't get into this particular show. Don't be discouraged. Keep applying to shows, keep upping your application game, and most of all KEEP CREATING!
Become a member of the Arts Community in Calaveras County
Join the CCAC!
You can still join the CCAC in 2020! Your membership helps the arts grow in Calaveras County.
Calaveras County Arts Council
Our goal is to support, nourish, and awaken the arts in our community.