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Kathryn Wilson
03-08-2006, 08:58 AM
Index to Thread:

Query - Advice on Entering Show: Post #1
Advice on Entering Shows: Posts 2-12
Loose Leaf Binder for Show Schedules: Post #7 (DonnaA)
What is a "Shipping Agent": Posts 16-17
Preferred Shipping Companies: Posts 21-23
Professional vs. On-Line Slide Companies: Post 24-25; 29; 31; 34; 38
What Does A Show Committee Mean by "Original Work Only": Post 27; 29
Insurance Query: Post # 32-33
How Can One Tell If A Show Is A Good Show To Enter: Posts 34-36
Jurying Process: Post 38
Photographing for Slides: Post 38 (DonnaA) (possible Article in future)
Query on Framing for Shows: Posts 41-44; 55
Method for Fabric Wrapped Mats: Posts 45-46 (PeggyB) (possible Article in future)

I came up with the idea for this Index as there is so much wonderful information shared, that the thread grew over-long and difficult to navigate. As this is the first time this has been done, please forgive if it is not perfect.
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Not having entered many shows, I am unclear as to how many shows you can/should enter a painting to get good exposure.

As many of you know, I won a prestigious award with my Bryce Canyon painting, but it was seen by very few people (locally and nationally) and I would like to enter it again in a local show AND a national show. (the scheduling problem is okay)

How many shows are too many - those of you who enter lots of shows, how many is too many for one painting? Is there a rule of thumb about this?

The one local show is huge and the national show is even bigger. The national show would be a big coup, but the chances of even getting juried in is slim to none - but I feel the painting deserves to be seen if only by the Jurors.

Also, do you sell the painting at the local show? What happens IF you are juried into the larger show. What a puzzle - :confused:

Pat Isaac
03-08-2006, 09:34 AM
I enter lots of shows around here and I guess I would say that 3 times for one painting is enough, especially if the audience overlaps. If the venue is totally different, like national shows, submit it again. I always figure if a piece sells, then I can just opt out of the other show, but if it is really important then make the piece NFS. It is your decision. There are some artists in my area who put the same piece in about 5 or 6 area shows. I think that is too much, sort of like overkill, no matter how good the painting is everyone has seen it several times. I even worry about 3 times.
I think it's awesome that you are going to enter these shows. :thumbsup:

Be sure and let us know what you decide.

Pat

cherylleclairsommer
03-08-2006, 10:32 AM
Many shows consider it unethical for an artist to have a piece accepted and then opt out (I learned this the hard way when I was a beginner). They may not have time to notify another individual about the exhibit opportunity. You can also get yourself on a black list by doing that. So watch the timing and include sufficient time to ship a piece. If entered into a second show, the piece should be listed NFS at the first show or, if someone is interested, tell them the piece can be purchased after the second show. Then list the piece NSF for the second show. Sometimes, the piece may need its own calendar. Good luck!

Deborah Secor
03-08-2006, 01:09 PM
In some shows if you have a painting accepted and decline to deliver it, you are banned from entering the show for a time, so be sure to check before opting out. Also, in some shows if your work is accepted and you sell it before delivering it, you STILL have to send them a check for the % commission they charge.

For instance, I know of a situation where an artist had a painting accepted to a huge national show (big, big show--very prestigious) but she had also entered it in a statewide show (big but not as prestigious). The painting was shipped to the national show and sold for a pretty penny plus a hefty commisssion, but then the state show said she had to also pay a commission to them because they in good faith held a spot for the painting in their show. She could not list is as NSF at the state show because she had already given them a price. After all was said and done the artist reaped no money (after paying two hefty commissions, plus shipping said painting to a distant show), the national show folks were all in a twist over it, the state show folks had banned her from showing for a while, and no one was happy.

The moral of that story is don't enter more than one show at a time! Enter, see if it's accepted, send the painting, see if it sells, get it back, and enter another show. However, I've seen more than one painting make the rounds of national level shows, from very well known and respected artists, garnering major awards over and over in different locales. As long as the show doesn't limit the length of time for having produced the artwork (sometimes they only accept work done in the last two years, or some such) I say enter a winning painting in many shows!

And Kat--go for the biggie show. If you don't enter the answer is always NO.

Deborah

Kathryn Wilson
03-08-2006, 02:03 PM
LOL - it sounds like I need to take Cheryl's advice and get me a calendar book for this painting.

I figured it out - the local show will be closed long before the jurying process on the national show starts, so I should be safe for those two shows.

Next question - should I put a huge price on the painting for the local show - after all, not selling the painting in the local show and then not getting into the larger show would be a minus situation all the way round - :)

I have heard that you could sell a painting at the show with the reserve that the if the painting gets into the larger show, it can be borrowed for that show. But who would want their painting they just purchased flown all over the country?

cherylleclairsommer
03-08-2006, 02:51 PM
Your prices should be fairly consistent over the years or your potential collectors/customers will get confused - especially if they see the piece at a later point for a smaller price. If you want the piece to go to the second show, put NFS for the first show.

Donna A
03-08-2006, 04:31 PM
Hi, Kyle! Great suggestions so far!!! Another really useful thing to do is to start a loose-leaf binder note book with clear plastic sleeve sheets. I put the prospectus and any other info in the sheet---so that it is all in one place as I recieve it, including the forms to fill out and include on back of painting that comes with the acceptence letter.

Yes! Keeping a calendar is a great thing! Another thing I also did was keep an extra slide of the work in a slide sheet at the beginning of this notebook. I would include images that were "available" to enter (that is finished, on hand, etc!) When I sent an entry off to a show, I would move this slide to the second slide sheet I kept----the one where the painting was "unavailable" and slipped a note with dates and where, etc. in the pocket next to it. This keeps the painting "out of temptation" for me! :-) I won't make a mistake of accidently entering the same piece twice. Makes a really visual "map" for me----and we are allllll so visual!

In REALLY BIG LETTERS in RED SHARPIE MARKER I write the Entry Deadline dates, and how many entries they allow. Also write Notification date and Due date for paintings. Boy---does this ever help! Many prospectus writers are masters of hiding dates in seas of similar text! I can open the page and see in a glance! Huge blessing!

In the first divider page of the notebook, I have written in my Fed Ex shipping number along with their phone number to call for a pick up. Have only run into one national show that required us to use UPS. Don't like to ship my artwork with them. Many artists don't. A friend of mine, John Roush, uses Airborne Express---which is DHL now, I think. Have their phone number and UPS's listed on the front page, too, just in case. John lives way, way far out from town, so he is glad DHL will come out that far for a pick up. You want to know any limitations your shipping company has. You might want to compare prices, etc, too. Check weight and measurement limits, of course! Pickup times, if they charge---some do, etc. This way, you will be able to make really good shipping decisions. And do check about their insurance. In some cases, you can ship a huge box full of empty frames and collect insurance on them if they are damaged in shipment----but no insurace paid on a painting. (Gee---isn't that the first time we've run into things like that!) (argh!!!) So just be sure!

A lot of artists have run into problems not noticing some little line in the prospectus----and can be rejected for a tiny oversight. Each one is different! Each has different info they want on slides----and in different order. I've found that I can scrape off sharpi fine marker text from the plastic slide holders---using it flat against the plastic as an eraser. So you can "re-do" a slide if you need to. Some erasers might erase the marker.

When shipping to NYC and many other places, you need to check with the exact requirements of the recieving company. NYC, especially! And when I pack my pieces, I do include a little note about repacking the box. I also put my return shipping label from Fed Ex in this big envelope along with any other information---and/or payment check for the receivers. All of this labeled on the outside of a big white or manila envelope! YOu can set up an acct. with Fed Ex---and others. Fed Ex will print out your shipper info and send you shipping label sheets. YOu check to bill the receiver when the box is shipped back, and you get a bill from Fed Ex before long---and no problems with your return!

I know you know a LOT of this, Kyle, but others may read this thread and find some of this useful.

I think you can enter a painting---as long as it falls within the "when-done date" as often as you wish, considering you are entering national shows---or regionals all around the country.

One of the huge nuisances is the veryyyyyy longgggggg time a painting is tied up in some instances! I remember with one of the national pastel shows at the marvelous Wichita (KS) Art Center, things were tied up from the entry date in mid-Dec. to over half-way through the next year! The acceptances did not go out till nearly spring. Hmmmm---ya gotta think they could do a bit better than THAT!!! But you just do not want to put your painting out there in any other way for sale in the interum time when you are---first: waiting to hear if a work is accepted or not, and two: when you are waiting for the delivery date for the work. Yes---artists DO get black-listed AND charged commissions when they renig on showing an accepted painting.

The ONLY time I ever, ever ran into a problem was when I sent in an entry (only one allowed) to some big national in NYC---many different mediums---and in spite of how much I have implored others to carefully read the prospectus---duh----did not catch the exact address for the pastel entries. And I had been very busy and did not send until the day before and mailed overnight express. And THEN the next day----the correct address just JUMPED out at me when I happened to casually glance at the prospectus. Wellll---phoooooey! That will be rejected! I knew! So----I just ups and enters the darned slide in another show, along with two others, down in TX. Know the NYC entry has no chance, going to the wrong address. The entry times were several weeks apart---but---some time later, the acceptences from the two shows arrived the same day! I opened the NYC one first. YIKES!!!! They accepted the piece---in spite of my having mailed to the wrong address! YIKES (did I say yikes, yet!!!!) :-) Oh my gosh oh my gosh----I'm muttering as I open the other one. The one I sent to NYC felt to me as considerably stronger than the other two I'd sent to TX! Expected TX to have also accepted the same one, if any----tremble--tremble-----and----OH----praise be!!!!----TX THANKFULLY rejected the one NYC accepted!!!!! Argh! WHEW! The lesson is-----EVEN IF you "screw up" (that's a technical term!) DON'T enter a piece in something else that you THINK you may have made ineligible!!!! Until you know better!!!!! Yikes! What a lesson!!!!!!

Well----go get 'em, Kyle!!!! Best wishes! Donna ;-}

ps---for anyone wondering about packaging paintings----I need to upload a lot of info I wrote for an article in Pastel Journal---and quite a few pics---from several years ago. If anyone is interested, let me know---and I will hasten! :-) D ;-}

Pat Isaac
03-08-2006, 05:07 PM
Sorry, Cheryl's advice makes sense, just never encountered this problem before but some of my friends have with no problem. I'd go with Cheryl though.

PAt

Kathryn Wilson
03-08-2006, 05:37 PM
Donna, can I move in with you for a little while - :) You know so much about everything! And that notebook sounds wonderful.

I certainly don't have the temperament for entering many shows that far away - my nerves would be shot on the shipping alone, much less wondering if it gets juried in or not. Baby steps for me, one at a time, until I get used to the idea.

This is definitely one thread I am going to print out. Let's get voting on the Rating Thread for some gold stars for this one!

Deborah and Pat, I just know that you have more little tales or horror stories to tell me - :) Don't worry, I will play safe - I can't afford to get blacklisted, not when I am just starting this process.

Donna A
03-08-2006, 06:39 PM
Donna, can I move in with you for a little while - :) You know so much about everything! And that notebook sounds wonderful.

I certainly don't have the temperament for entering many shows that far away - my nerves would be shot on the shipping alone, much less wondering if it gets juried in or not. Baby steps for me, one at a time, until I get used to the idea.

This is definitely one thread I am going to print out. Let's get voting on the Rating Thread for some gold stars for this one!

Deborah and Pat, I just know that you have more little tales or horror stories to tell me - :) Don't worry, I will play safe - I can't afford to get blacklisted, not when I am just starting this process.
Hi, Kyle!!! Hee hee hee! Oh, you sweetheart! :-) LOL!!!! (I've got a great sofa bed in my studio----just being used mid-April by a friend from NE!) :-)

You are right, Kyle! Entering a LOT of shows is just overwhelming! But---once the baby-darling is packed up---how far it is----or to which show---is all the same! You have some gorgeous work!

"Baby steps" are good!!!! Sane, even!!!! :-) There is "something" about letting go of that darling slipping into the mail slot that let's one let go----for a while. We move on. Outta sight, mostly outta mind! As the saying SHOULD go!!! (OK---I admit---I give each entry a little kiss---even at the Post Office--[subtle!]--before sending it off. Hey---love those darlings!!!) (The bad part is that they kept accepting almost everything I enter!!! Talk about nerves being shot!!!! Yep!!! Whew! Know JUST what you mean!!!) :-)

Well, you are going to have soooo much fun!!!! Very, very best wishes! You'll do great! Donna ;-}

Punky2
03-08-2006, 07:00 PM
What a great thread. I just rated it Excellent.
Thanks everyone for all of the useful information - someday I hope to be able to put it to use by entering a show.

Terri

PeggyB
03-08-2006, 07:47 PM
Horror stories - I could write a book on horror stories both from personal experience and having been an exhibition chairperson for three different art organizations over about 30 years. However, I'd rather write about success stories and how to avoid the horror.

You've gotten good advise so far so I'll just do some recap.

1. The general "rule" (unwritten though it be) for how many times one "should" enter a painting differs from local to national shows. Local shows will have different times. If local judges get tired of seeing it, they won't accept it. National shows are usually limited only if the show prospectus gives a date such as two years old - which personally I think is silly because how does a good painting go bad in two years? I agree with Donna and Deborah - enter a winning painting as often as you can because chances are it won't have the same audience and everyone deserves the opportunity to study a good painting.

2. Never cross enter the same painting until you know for certain it will be available for a show. Most national shows won't allow NFS. By entering the slide, you are agreeing to the prospectus rules which assume you will ship the work should it be accepted. Show venues limit the number of paintings that can be accepted, and if you don't ship you've not only denied another artist being in the show, you've denied the venue a possible sale. It isn't worth your reputation to not send the work as promised. Ok, let's say you goofed and the same painting is accepted into two shows that overlap one another. Now what do you do? I can tell you for certain that more than one person has had this problem because they all had the good sense to contact me when it happened to a show I was chairing. I asked them how good are they at exactly repeating a painting, and each said they could do that. If you don't think you could copy your own work a second time, then don't cross enter. I saw both paintings by one artist, and to tell you the truth, I didn't know which was the first one painted. However, the artist told me they'd never make the same mistake again! :lol:

3. Read the prospectus carefully, and if necessary read it again. If you have a question don't hesitate to contact whomever is listed in the prospectus as the contact person. They should have an answer.

4. Keep your prices the same. Once you start entering national competitions, you should automatically include the expense of shipping to the furthest point that you are comfortable shipping to. For some people - like myself who live in the far corners of the country, that may be as much as an extra $150 in shipping and handling fees I know I'll have to spend. I automatically add that to paintings that are my show pieces. Also remember that many venues charge as much as 50% commission so include that in your price figuring as well.

5. Ask Donna for her article on shipping to shows. That's easier than me writing it here. I think we have similar, but not the same methods. :D

6. Know that if there is going to be a problem, it will probably be with the shipping agent the sponsor is recommending you use. In all those 30 years, this has been my biggest headache. Finding reliable shipping agents is very difficult - especially when I didn't live where the show was being held! If you are accepted, contact that person early and get a clear understanding of what they expect of you. If you have any questions at all, don't rely only upon what is written in the instructions you've received from the sponsor. Follow the instructions exactly as they are given - and cross your fingers once the work has left your possession. There are good shipping agents, and each sponsor tries to assure that they recommend them, but all too often problems arise so just be prepared. Make your shipping box as simple to repack as possible, and don't assume the person repacking can understand what you've written if you include repacking instructions. That's one reason I use a nationally recognized shipping crate.

There's probably more I'll remember later, but this should be enough to get you started kat. btw: Never try to guess whether or not your work will be accepted into a show. If anyone knew how to do that, they'd have built the better mouse trap! :lol: Oh yes, have fun and good luck.

Peggy

Donna A
03-08-2006, 09:54 PM
Is Peggy B good----Or What!!!! :-} Donna ;-}

K Taylor-Green
03-08-2006, 10:05 PM
Kat, good for you! I think it's great that you are going for more exposure. Your work is definitly worth putting out there.
Good luck!

A big thanks for all the great advice! I'm sure many members will be helped by this.

Rated this Exellent.

Kathryn Wilson
03-08-2006, 11:13 PM
Okay, explain what a "shipping agent" is. Showing my total ignorance here -

I've only entered local shows, so going national is a whole other world.

Donna A
03-08-2006, 11:54 PM
Okay, explain what a "shipping agent" is. Showing my total ignorance here -

I've only entered local shows, so going national is a whole other world.
The Devil. OK---OK---just kidding!!! In NYC----they charge you (last time I entered a show there, about $90) for receiveing and then unpacking the box and delivering the paintings(s) to the show----and then picking up and repacking and shipping back "home." (Prepaid)

(OK---the most----heartful----experience was----9/11----the painting (my painting) was to be delivered to a major national exhibition----and----after the shock---from the telly !!! I did know that that was the day the paintings would have been transported from the receiving company to the exhibition.

For about one second, it ocurred to me to wonder about the painting and it's delivery situation. Some time later---months----I found a "show tag on the painting when it returned. Gotta say----the companies in NYC who receive are "pretty tough cookies!!!!!"

Now---for cities smaller than NYC---:-)----sometimes a pastel society makes use of a Mailboxes and More, or simiar, to receive, unpack and deliver the paintings. They are the "delivery agent." Usually, out of NYC, they do not charge an arm and BOTH legs!!!!

Many art groups do not want to take responsiblity---or handle all the unpackng and then repacking for works in a significant show!!!

(Next year the MidAmerica Pastel Socitey is doing it's very first national show.....and we have soooooo much more work to do!!!!!)

Best wishes to EVERYONE!!!! Donna!!!! :-}

PeggyB
03-09-2006, 02:09 AM
Okay, explain what a "shipping agent" is. Showing my total ignorance here -

I've only entered local shows, so going national is a whole other world.

No question that needs to be explained should be thought of as ignorance. I learned long ago that terms have different meanings in different parts of the world (could tell a funny story about myself in this regard sometime :o ).

Shipping agent is also known as handling agent or fine art agent or any other number of names I suppose. Basically it is a company or person who receives the shipped artwork - usually for a fee - unpacks the painting/s, takes the work to the host venue, retrieves the work at the end of the show if it doesn't sell, recrates the work and sends it back to you via prepaid freight agent (which is different from shipping/handling agent and might be Fed Ex, UPS, DHL, USPS, etc).

Many times if the venue is a museum, they will have staff that is experienced in doing this job and the fee will be minimal. Other times (as in the case of NYC, the agent is a professional company that will charge an arm and a leg, and may or may not handle you work with care). Sometimes the pastel societies have members who do the work, still for a fee, and the results have varied greatly. There's just no way to judge the quality of the agent by the price they charge or the "professionalism" of a company. Past performance is the only guide, and therefore if you know anyone who's had work accepted by the recommended agent you would be well advised to ask about their experience. Contrary to popular belief or advertising, not all independent mail box places know how to package fine art.

Some questions to ask if they aren't spelled out in the sponsor's shipping instructions would be:
1. If my work arrives damaged or in poor condition (i.e. dust has fallen all over the mats) will I be informed in time that it can be repaired or cleaned and delivered to the exhibit? (This can be an easier question to answer if you ship as early as possible).
2. Do you have a recommended pastel experienced framer to do repairs/cleaning?
3. At the end of the exhibit, how long will it be before I can expect to have the unsold work returned to me? This is a very important question if you want to enter it into another show. Depending upon how far it has to travel to be returned, it can take from one to two weeks on average, but I've known of some that haven't arrived until 2 months+ after the close of the show, and it wasn't even a large show.
4. For how many exhibits have you been the shipping/handling agent, and how large have any previous shows been? An experienced agent shouldn't mind telling you of their experience.

I hope this information doesn't seem too frightening. All in all given the huge number of paintings that are accepted into national shows, the number of "oops!" is minimal. You can do your part by making certain the shipping crate is simple to repackage, that it arrives at the earliest possible time prior to the show, and that you include the correct prepaid return shipment fee with your shipment - which leads me to another issue.

Correct prepaid return shipment fee. Strangely enough, the fee isn't always the same going and returning. If you are shipping from your place of business it may be less going to the exhibit. The return may be larger - sometimes a lot larger - depending upon the agreement the exhibiting venue has with the various freight agencies. This a complicate matter as the different agencies have different policies, and not all businesses that handle packages have the same degree of knowledge so what you hear from one may be different from another. For instance, (and I don't mean to pick on what was formerly Mailboxes Ect, but they are the business that I know of that has had this problem). An artist in Texas shipped work to a show in Pennsylvania via UPS through Mailboxes Etc, and was satisfied with the low fee she paid. Unfortunately, the person at Mailboxes Etc wasn't very experienced and failed to take one of the measurements that determines if the box is oversized. When it came time to ship the work back, the amount of money the artist included as her prepaid return shipping fee was less than half of what the Pennsylvania UPS charged. This was a museum show, so the museum had arrangements for UPS to pick up the work directly from them and would have saved the artist money had her Texas Mailboxes charged the correct fee getting to Pennsylvania. There was considerable delay in the return of the work until this was figured out and the correct amount of money sent to the museum for the return. For this reason many artists pay a bit more, but use Fed EX as they can have their own accounts with Fed Ex and don't have to guess what the return fee might be. I understand there are other freight agents that are now doing this too so shop around for the one that best suits your needs. Sometimes the shipping/handling agent has a preference as to the freight agent they receive and ship through. That possible restriction should be in the shipping information packet you receive from the sponsor.

If you have more questions, don't hesitate to ask.

Peggy

Kathryn Wilson
03-09-2006, 06:32 AM
Peggy, that was a wonderfully detailed explanation - thanks for taking the time to answer that question. I had no idea this was so complicated - :)

One other question, and this is a personal preference kind of question - which shipping company do you prefer and have had good experience with? I use Fed Ex all the time and have an account with them - the one time I had a claim, it was settled immediately. UPS was another story.

Well, here is another question - if your painting arrives damages and needs to be fixed - and it is clear across the country, who does that? What if the actual painting needs to be repaired or cleaned up?

If my work arrives damaged or in poor condition (i.e. dust has fallen all over the mats) will I be informed in time that it can be repaired or cleaned and delivered to the exhibit?

It also occurred to me that entering pastel shows nationally would be better as the committee and the people involved in receiving paintings are in the know - correct? Stay away from all-media shows?

Kathryn Wilson
03-09-2006, 08:14 AM
(Next year the MidAmerica Pastel Socitey is doing it's very first national show.....and we have soooooo much more work to do!!!!!)

Yes, the Pastel Society of NC will be hosting its first national show this next year also - they were talking about art agents and I had no clue what they were talking about. Apparently they have found a wonderful agent, very close to the venue, who accepts painting exhibits all the time. :clap:

Pat Isaac
03-09-2006, 11:04 AM
A shipping agent is one who handles the work for the show. You ship the work to them(most national shows suggest an agent) and they in turn unpack it and deliver it to the show. At the end of the show they pick it up, re-pack it and send it back to you. The agent fee vaires from agent to agent.
Great thread, I've learned a lot here.

Pat

PeggyB
03-09-2006, 05:06 PM
Peggy, that was a wonderfully detailed explanation - thanks for taking the time to answer that question. I had no idea this was so complicated - :)

One other question, and this is a personal preference kind of question - which shipping company do you prefer and have had good experience with? I use Fed Ex all the time and have an account with them - the one time I had a claim, it was settled immediately. UPS was another story.

I too prefer Fed Ex and have an account. Perhaps for a similar reason as yours is for not using UPS. However, I've also used DHL for shipping shorter distances and found them to be reliable as well as a bit less expensive. At that time I had a box in one of the private mail companies, and they use there account for me. Unfortunately, I don't have that mail box any more so will have to go back to Fed EX I think. I should probably do more research again since it has been years since I last did it. If I do, I'll let everyone know, but if you're in a hurry you'll need to do your own research.

Well, here is another question - if your painting arrives damages and needs to be fixed - and it is clear across the country, who does that? What if the actual painting needs to be repaired or cleaned up?

Very good question, but not one I've ever had to face before either as the artist or the exhibit chairperson. The worst that's ever happened that I know of is bad dusting and the mats needing to be replaced or a frame popping the corners and needed to be reglued. If you've properly packed the work in an industry accepted shipping crate, I don't think there should be a problem of the painting itself being damaged. Most shows require that it be shipped under plexiglass, and the worst that happens is the frame corners pop. When I ship work to a show, I go the more expensive route and have it shipped second day if it has far to go and next day if it isn't so far away. I'd ship next day for further points, but the extra expense is really high. I do this because I figure the less handling the crate gets the less chance there is of damage or falling pastel dust. For the return shipping I go for the "pony express" long, less expensive route because I know I will be getting it back and removing the plexi. For short distances (down to Oregon or northern California for me) I have shipped under glass in the Air Float Strongboxes and had no problems. However, you need to know that some freight handlers won't insure the work if they know it is under glass so if there is breakage they won't reimburse you for the damage even if it is their fault (UPS is one of these carriers).
As for "who" should fix a damaged painting, in my opinion that would be you the artist. No one touches my work, and I'm sure most artists feel the same way. Unfortunately, that would mean it wouldn't be in the exhibit. Hopefully the sponsor & venue are understanding of breakage as a legitamate reason for not having the work in their show.

If my work arrives damaged or in poor condition (i.e. dust has fallen all over the mats) will I be informed in time that it can be repaired or cleaned and delivered to the exhibit?

It also occurred to me that entering pastel shows nationally would be better as the committee and the people involved in receiving paintings are in the know - correct? Stay away from all-media shows?

Uhhh - don't bet on it. :rolleyes: The national shows are run by "people" just as the local shows are and they may or may not have training and enough experience to be aware of all the pitfalls. All media shows are just as good as single media shows, and sometimes better depending upon the prestiege of the show.

Yes, the Pastel Society of NC will be hosting its first national show this next year also - they were talking about art agents and I had no clue what they were talking about. Apparently they have found a wonderful agent, very close to the venue, who accepts painting exhibits all the time.

Is this going to be in Raleigh? If it is, I wish I'd known about this wonderful agent last year when I was chairing the show for IAPS. ... more stories, more stories... :wink2:

Peggy

Kathryn Wilson
03-09-2006, 06:06 PM
Is this going to be in Raleigh? If it is, I wish I'd known about this wonderful agent last year when I was chairing the show for IAPS. ... more stories, more stories... :wink2:

Peggy[/QUOTE]

Not in Raleigh directly - it is a few counties away, but would have still been a good bet for safe handling.
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Uhhh - don't bet on it. The national shows are run by "people" just as the local shows are and they may or may not have training and enough experience to be aware of all the pitfalls. All media shows are just as good as single media shows, and sometimes better depending upon the prestiege of the show.

I should have been clearer - I meant pastel shows - people who are aware of the problems with handling pastel paintings.

PeggyB
03-09-2006, 08:53 PM
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Uhhh - don't bet on it. The national shows are run by "people" just as the local shows are and they may or may not have training and enough experience to be aware of all the pitfalls. All media shows are just as good as single media shows, and sometimes better depending upon the prestiege of the show.

I should have been clearer - I meant pastel shows - people who are aware of the problems with handling pastel paintings.[/quote]

Oh you were clear enough, and the information holds as written. You'd think pastel people would be more careful, but unfortunately that just isn't true in some cases. Sometimes it isn't the society that's at fault as they contract with someone else to do the shipping/handling work thinking that a "professional" shipping/handling agent knows what they are doing. That is probably true of items other than fine art... Other times it is the society doing the work, but they don't have adequate training in how to repack artwork so if the crate or packing method is a bit complicated it doesn't get done on the return (remember my advise about keeping packing simple and professional). Other times the society doesn't have enough volunteers to help get the work repacked in a timely manner. The show's over, the volunteers are tired, and for various reasons things start to fall apart. But remember:

This is the exception rather than the rule. Don't let these horror stories stop you from entering any competition you feel you'd like to enter. If you remember to do the few simple things I've already suggested, you should have a good experience entering competitions. . . and if you have trouble please let us know. There's nothing more powerful at creating positive change than international attention. :)

Peggy

Kathryn Wilson
03-09-2006, 10:23 PM
I understand completely - and certainly will keep all that in mind when we work at our show next year.

I am not particularly scared off by all this advice - but certainly more aware of what it all entails - and that I need to be much more organized than I am at present regarding shows, and that I need to get all my ducks in a row before I even attempt one.

One more thing - how important is it to have a professional photographer do your slides? Where do you find someone who is experienced at taking slides of artwork? They certainly don't advertise that expertise. My husband and I have been taking digital photos of our work, but not sure whether our slide taking ability is up to par. It would be interesting to see the difference.

Thanks for all the advice everybody!

MarshaSavage
03-10-2006, 09:26 AM
Hi Kat,
Great to hear you are entering shows! Wonderful information about all the aspects of entering and shipping to shows.

Regarding your question about slides -- whatever you do, please look at any photographer's slides and the original work the slide was taken from -- if possible. The reason I say this -- I used a good photographer for several years and was accepted into shows -- then a couple of years ago, he had problems making the slide look like the painting. The problem was that I have such a wide range of values in my paintings he could not capture that. He shot so you could see into the darks, thus the lighter aspects of the painting did not show as well. At least this is what I thought, and he also alluded to this. But, he could not tell me for certain if this was a problem with my painting method, his camera, his film, his settings, etc.

I had previously started sending my digital images to an on-line slide company for them to send me slides. Was very pleased. Of course, you have to know that what you take and how you tweak it to look more like the painting are working! And, you do not want to misrepresent your painting by tweaking the digital image too much! This might be a problem in the future for some shows accepting digital images.

Anyway, check out those on-line companies that will produce a slide from your digital image. It might be just what you are looking for. I use it exclusively now.

Come to my area sometime, won't you! Carly and I would love to get together with you and paint!

Kathryn Wilson
03-10-2006, 09:52 AM
((((hugs)))) Marsha, I miss you and Carly! Please come back more often to post.

Good idea on those on-line sites - would you mind PM'ing me the company you use?

Kathryn Wilson
03-10-2006, 12:07 PM
Okay, all you experienced show go'ers and show committee members. What exactly does a show committee mean by "original" work. My take on it is that I did the painting, I signed it - it is originally mine.

But now comes the question - if the painting was taken from a photo and interpreted by the artist, but the photo was from a public domain site, or our RIL - does this make the painting less original?

Khadres
03-10-2006, 12:36 PM
Donna, that packaging and shipping info you mentioned would be a great addition here! When you can make time for it....:eek: :smug:

PeggyB
03-10-2006, 01:15 PM
One more thing - how important is it to have a professional photographer do your slides? Where do you find someone who is experienced at taking slides of artwork? They certainly don't advertise that expertise. My husband and I have been taking digital photos of our work, but not sure whether our slide taking ability is up to par. It would be interesting to see the difference.

Thanks for all the advice everybody!

If you have a good quality digital camera, there's no reason you can't learn to take your own pictures and then have them made into slides through any one of several on line places that do that. I suggest you try one well in advance, and if you're not satisfied try to find a pro. That however can be a big challenge. Start by asking at all the camera and photography studios in your area. Here's what I do to take my own:

1. Usually I wait for a "bright overcast" day - harder than you might think in the NorthWET! We have plenty of overcast, but for me the best light is when it is bright overcast. I lay the painting flat on the patio, and stand directly over it making certain the painting is square to the camera frame (the little lines I can see that indicate the picture view being taken), and that I'm not casting my shadow on the the painting. I take a couple shots, bring it in to the computer, and look at what I've taken. If I like it, I'm done, if not I go back and do more or wait for another day when the lighting is better or:

2. My second option takes more time to set up. I have color corrected lights in my studio that are on a light stand so I can move them about. I also have a very good camera tripod with a level indicator built into it. Rather than putting it on a easel and trying to be sure it is totally flat and square to the camera, I put the painting on the floor. Then I place the tripod over it and be sure it is level and square to the painting. Next the lights need to be fussed with and I'm not sure exactly how that's done so it takes me more time to get just right or else I end up with either too much light and a washed out photo or too little light and it is too dark. Thank goodness for digital cameras that allow me to do retakes more times than I like! :lol: I keep looking at whatever I've done on the computer until satisfied.

Either of these two methods have produced acceptable slides equal to any I've ever had done professionally and at a fraction of the cost. Fewer and fewer pros are willing to handle fine art, and even fewer pastel fine art. I have my slides made by an on line service called www.iprintfromhome.com (http://www.iprintfromhome.com) They ae located on the east coast - New York I think, but their service is very good as are their prices. They also have a program whereby they ask who directed you to them, and that person gets dollar credit everytime someone new signs up and again when they place their first order (they know me as Peggy Braeutigam). They ship the slides same day if the order is placed by 6AM Eastern time. Since they offer 24/7 on line service that's pretty easy for anyone who's a night owl! :thumbsup: The first slide is $2.49 and each additional slide of the same image is $1.25. (I always order at least 3 of every image) They have several options for delivery and the price can be as low as $3 for USPS first class delivery in 3 - 15 days (I've never had it take longer than 7 days and live about as far from them as one can get.) I know there's another one in New Mexico called www.gammatech.com (http://www.gammatech.com). , but I've never used their service. I keep getting credits through iprintfromhome from people I don't even know so the price is usually lower after I deduct the credit from my orders. Therefore, I've not had a good reason to try gammatech :) They are in Albuquerque so Deborah might know of them.

OK Kat, I think you should be well on your way now. If you think of more questions, ask away...

Peggy

PeggyB
03-10-2006, 01:30 PM
Okay, all you experienced show go'ers and show committee members. What exactly does a show committee mean by "original" work. My take on it is that I did the painting, I signed it - it is originally mine.

But now comes the question - if the painting was taken from a photo and interpreted by the artist, but the photo was from a public domain site, or our RIL - does this make the painting less original?

O boy! I step away long enough to answer one question, and more important questions pop up :lol:

"Original" means not taken from someone else's reference nor done in a classroom or workshop setting where you've gotten direct instruction from someone. I believe there's already been this discussion on this forum, but don't remember when or what the title is. I also seem to remember that the consensus was critiques from WC did not constitute "direct instruction" and are therefore not classroom or workshop instruction. No one is seeing the original artwork on their monitors nor is there a possiblity of anyone taking pastel in hand to do an illustration of what they are trying to "teach" directly on your painting.

As for source material, well you have to be very careful with that. The consensus there was that if anyone can identify your painting as being from any source other than your own photo, you probably shouldn't use it. However, if your interpertation is sufficiently different from the source such that the source can't be identified, then your ok. A problem with using the RIL is that if too many paintings using the same reference are entered into the same competition, the judges are going to become pretty suspicious and just might not accept any of them no matter how well they are painted.

Peggy

Deborah Secor
03-10-2006, 02:32 PM
I know there's another one in New Mexico called www.gammatech.com. , but I've never used their service. They are in Albuquerque so Deborah might know of them.Gammatech is GREAT! Charlie Dodge is a consummate pro. Everything you see of mine came through him, unless it was taken from my digitals directly. I wouldn't be bothered with all the fuss and time involved in taking standard slides anymore.

Not long ago I uploaded a file to gamma and left a message there to have a 4x5 of the painting shipped to the author of a book it was going into and never heard another thing about it until the invoice arrived. Then I called the author (Maggie Price) and she laughed. Neither of us were at all concerned because it had been turned over to Charlie. Prices for slides and tranparencies are reasonable. (I used to pay $100 for a 4x5 from a pro--from my digital file it's $20! whoo hoo!)

...if the painting was taken from a photo and interpreted by the artist, but the photo was from a public domain site, or our RIL - does this make the painting less original?Short answer: yes.

Deborah

CindyW
03-15-2006, 09:54 PM
...... Check weight and measurement limits, of course! Pickup times, if they charge---some do, etc. This way, you will be able to make really good shipping decisions. And do check about their insurance. In some cases, you can ship a huge box full of empty frames and collect insurance on them if they are damaged in shipment----but no insurace paid on a painting. (Gee---isn't that the first time we've run into things like that!) (argh!!!) So just be sure!

Hi all,
What about insurance for paintings in venues that don't insure and have requested that the artist insure their own work for the entire time it's out of the artist's hands? That isn't insurance through the shipper any longer. Do any of you insure your work for the duration it's hanging in a show? I ask because of this I read on a site I am entering work for:
"Every precaution will be taken to protect entries, and due care will be exercised in handling all work submitted, but neither the * * of Fine Arts, its volunteers, agents, officers and council members, nor the * * Center., its officers, directors,
employees, volunteers and agents will be responsible for loss, or damage to any work from any cause whatsoever, or the theft of any
work submitted, on display or in storage. The submitting artist agrees to insure or self insure any work submitted, and to hold the * * of Fine Arts and the * * Center harmless from any damage resulting from the use of the premises, or any loss
of or to submitted work or the personal property of the * * of Fine Arts, members, guests or others.The submission of
works to the exhibition constitutes an agreement on the part of the artist or artist’s agent to these conditions."I don't know where to look yet for insurance info...I checked one thread on WetCanvas but the site suggested didn't sound very affordable to me.
Thanks for your help/info!
Cindy

PeggyB
03-15-2006, 10:18 PM
Hi all,
What about insurance for paintings in venues that don't insure and have requested that the artist insure their own work for the entire time it's out of the artist's hands? ...I don't know where to look yet for insurance info...I checked one thread on WetCanvas but the site suggested didn't sound very affordable to me. Thanks for your help/info!
Cindy

I haven't looked in a long time, but the last time I did inquire through my own insurance agent it was way more than I wanted to pay. Therefore, I no longer participate in any competitions that don't offer insurance to the participating artists. I just don't think it is a professional thing to do. Businesses have insurance, and in my opinion so should any organization that wants my money. I know most nonprofit groups don't have the funds for this, but the least they can do is hold their competitions in a venue that does. Galleries and museums for the most part have insurance. Any other venue is probably not worth my time or money to exhibit my work.

But that's just my opinion, and others will do as they please.

Peggy

Orchidacea
03-16-2006, 11:01 AM
Wow! This is a fantastic thread!! Thanks everyone!

Donna, please do post your article on packing and shipping...I really need that info!

I've just started entering shows, as I've been painting for less than a year. I've entered two national shows so far, and was accepted to both! (Different paintings for each, happily.) I just shipped a piece across the country, and it's giving me some sleepless nights! I wish I'd read this thread before I shipped.

I also use www.iprintfromhome.com, and I think they're great! I basically get next-day service from them, since they're only an hour away from here, in Buffalo, so it's perfect for a procrastinator like myself.

Speaking of procrastination--which goes hand-in-hand with disorganization in my case--Donna's notebook idea is fantastic! I'm going to start one right away.

Antoher question for the experts here: How do you know if a show is a "good" one, worth the entry fee and all the shipping and handling costs? And how often do pieces tend to sell in these kinds of shows?

MarshaSavage
03-16-2006, 11:40 AM
Kim,
About the only way to find out whether a show is a "good" one is to really look at the prospectus. Who is the judge, how much are their prize amounts, do they have a web site, who are they affiliated with, etc.? Usually just knowing the judge will give you some insight. Other than that, I don't know. Someone else here might have a better idea how to find out more about a particular show. Oh . . . check in the magazines Art Calendar, Pastel Journal, The Artist, etc. Most of these magazines list deadlines for shows and give contact information.

Regarding selling in these shows -- I don't count on it. I do it strictly for my resume and name recognition -- and I try to balance what I send for competitions and what I send to galleries. I know some artists that all they do is enter competitions.

PeggyB
03-16-2006, 04:27 PM
Regarding selling in these shows -- I don't count on it. I do it strictly for my resume and name recognition -- and I try to balance what I send for competitions and what I send to galleries. I know some artists that all they do is enter competitions.

Very well stated Marsha. Balance is a good thing, as "Martha" might say. :) Show sales really are the last thing anyone can count on in a competition which is unfortunate, but more often the rule rather than the exception. There is one pastel competition I know of that seems to do pretty well in sales from year to year, and that is the Pastel Society of New Mexico open for dry pastels only. Deborah can tell everyone more about that show I think or will know of someone who can.

Peggy

Gigibrooke
03-16-2006, 04:40 PM
Perhaps not in national shows, but in most of our big shows here in the State of Indiana the prospectus says "cannot have been accepted into another juried show or cannot have won an award in another juried show".
Marilyn Witt
www.marilynwitt.homestead.com

Donna A
03-16-2006, 08:14 PM
<<snip>>
One more thing - how important is it to have a professional photographer do your slides? Where do you find someone who is experienced at taking slides of artwork? They certainly don't advertise that expertise. My husband and I have been taking digital photos of our work, but not sure whether our slide taking ability is up to par. It would be interesting to see the difference.

Thanks for all the advice everybody!
Well, the important thing to do is to have slides of the utmost finest quality---no matter who takes them! It IS something you and yours can do yourselves if you do not have a pro at hand.

Now---what constitutes a -fine- slide? I've judged a number of shows from slides and---geeee----some of the "stuff" ya see!

First, let me tell you what happens when your slides are being juried. The juror----or perhaps up to three jurors----are sitting in a dark room, with stacks of slides to review. FAST. They are looking for paintings that "knock their socks off----FAST." It's got to grab the viewer NOW! Choose your strongest works! Make sure they are striking! If a slide is washed out---boring----pass. If an image is rather crooked and scewwed----artist doesn't take this competition seriously----pass. If there is a big showy frame----humphffff----pass. If the slide is sooo dark you can hardly see it------can't see it----pass! Out of focus----pass. You get the drift! :-) A "wowie painting!!!"-----check----we'll include in the next round of jurying! That's how it goes. FAST. Did I say FAST yet????

Let me start with Don'ts:

No frame and no mat in the image. No extraneous background. With my pastels, I use photographers' black masking tape to tape off the edges before taking to my photographer. Let's me see the edges better when I check to see if I need to tape off extraneous elements at any side of the painting. OR---you can use the blackest mat---better yet, one covered with black velvet----the final size of your pastel---or watercolor images. That way, you may not need to tape off anything. My photographer shoots on a black wall with white grid so that he can both hang the paintings he is shooting absolutely straight----plus use that as one of the two checks to be sure his camera is absolutely square on! *more on this later!

Don't photo your image as though it were no bigger than a postage stamp, drowning in surroundings! Fill your frame with almost alllll the painting. Do be sure you are aware of how much of the view-finder's image shows up in the final image. Some film cameras use about 93%. I used Nikons that used a far higher percentage, nearer 100% but not quite----so I always left a bit a room around. I do that with my digital now, too, tho usually am only doing "final" shots for the artists who work with me, rather than my own. I still use my professional photographer for my pieces. However----I gotta say----my digitals, run thru PhotoShop for others----look ever so good. BUT---I do have him shoot 4"x5" negatives, etc, plus really large digital format, as well as the slides---soooooo. OK---do---just be sure you are getting all of your painting-----and as large as possible, needing to trim off only a tiny bit!

Do "bracket" you shots----that is----shoot several different settings on the meter. That's what John Mutrux does for my pieces. He is an absolute expert on lighting!!! Lighted the set for my Mastering Color DVDs and my videographer was in heaven! The man is sooo good! BUT----he still brackets!

Now---on this point----I've noticed a LOT of washed out or very pale slides when jurying. The slides look fine if held up to a window. With average light coming thru. Put the same slide into a slide projector and-----blahhhhh! So----LOOK AT YOUR SLIDES, BEFORE YOU ENTER, IN A SLIDE PROJECTOR!!! See what they REALLY look like when a juror is seeing them! This will be simple brilliance on your part! I promise! If you are giving someone a sheet of slides in a gallery where more likely than not, they will simply be holding the sheet up to a window---use your lighter slides! For shows, I think one of the reasons I have almost everything accepted is because I use the deeper, richer colored slides that look LIKE the painting when shown through a slide projector with a 300W bulb, which is common.

There is a special---a SPECIAL---silver mylar tape made to be used to tape off the edges in slides. You can take one of two tacts-----either select one really good Master slide---tape it off very carefully (magnifying glass helps a LOT of us!!!) :-) And then have duplicates made. OR---with a slew of bracketed slides-----tape as you need. Some prefer the original slide.

Now---another way to do it----using a digital image-----square it up (as needed in PhotoShop), black out the surroundings----and send off the digital image to one of several companies who will make slides from digital images.

PEGGY B---we need you!!!! The Peg knows of a really good company that she has used----and then others, too, have used per her suggestion----and all have been very happy. Geeeee----the things Mizzz Peggy B KNOWS!!! Cool! So---I suspect we can count on her to share this url---and she probably already has before! There are a couple of others I know of and have printed all 3 in the MidAmerica Pastel Society newsletter----but---can't remember when. One'a these days----I'll check back and find where---but Peggy B's resource is excellent!!!

*Square up your photo in your camera's viewfinder! You've got to get your image to look like a rectangle!!! Trapazoid's----unless that is the shape in which you compose your works-----are not taken seriously when being viewed by jurors----or perspective gallery representitives. Adjust your camera, your tripod (you want a tripod---many reasonably priced versions!!!) And use a tape measure, etc as needed. And a grid on the "back board" can be useful---or at least have a very firm edge on your painting (easy with canvases) so that you can check that each edge of the painting is parallel to each respective edge of the viewfinder.

To tape off a slide with mylar----some will tape right over the edge of the mount, and you can often manage that. But the best thing to do is to take the slide out of the mount and tape it "nekked" and then slip it into a new mount. That's pretty easy! Might sound hard---but it's not-----just a nuisance!!! I made a light table out of a drawing board table my parents gave me when I was 16----which was a couple years ago or soooo! :-) Still works as a table, but just took the wooden table top off and mounted two very short florescent fixtures face up, then put tracing paper and a thick piece of glass where the table top used to be. Works great! You can also hold things up to a window---or get an inexpensive little light table to use for looking at your slides and doing the taping.

I think I've seen other threads about photoing your own work. You can do it!!! Just take a bit of time! Bracket. Develop some good patterns and it will get pretty easy!!!! I promise! :-)

That's all I can think of at the moment! Just----jump in! Paint those striking pieces-----and have at it!!! And very, very best wishes!!!! Enjoy a LOT! Donna ;-}

PeggyB
03-16-2006, 08:16 PM
Perhaps not in national shows, but in most of our big shows here in the State of Indiana the prospectus says "cannot have been accepted into another juried show or cannot have won an award in another juried show".
Marilyn Witt
www.marilynwitt.homestead.com (http://www.marilynwitt.homestead.com)

WOW that is restrictive! However, that won't keep you from entering an award winning painting in a national competition. :) I can understand not wanting to see the same painting all the time, but how many folks travel across the state to see every show? What gets me to wondering is how in the world "they" are going to know if you had the piece in a show in some state that isn't near yours? The same thought goes through my mind when I read a prospectus that limits the age of a painting. How are they going to know, if you've never exhibited it before, when the painting was painted? All so silly to me - a good painting is a good painting and deserving of all the exposure it can get. I still say if the judges are tired of seeing it, they won't accept it in the first place... but that's just my opinion.

Peggy

Shari
03-17-2006, 10:47 AM
I have been reading a book called "Living the Artist's Life" and it addresses all these issues in depth.

CindyW
03-17-2006, 04:28 PM
Hey, how does everyone feel about the quality/kind of frames for a show? I was reading in the Plein Air forum about frames and found this thread...there were quite a few others.

Cindy

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=327658&highlight=plein+frames

Pat Isaac
03-17-2006, 04:43 PM
I have always felt that presentation is very important. Even my high school students work that was presented for portfolio review was always matted, backed and protected with clear plastic(because of the constant handling) and I know that their work stood out because of the presentation. It helps. So, I think that the frame should complement your work. Good thread that you found, Cindy.

Pat

PeggyB
03-17-2006, 05:07 PM
Hey, how does everyone feel about the quality/kind of frames for a show? I was reading in the Plein Air forum about frames and found this thread...there were quite a few others.

Cindy

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=327658&highlight=plein+frames

Thanks for this thread Cindy. It was interesting to read even though the focus is on frames for gallery sales, and not exhibition.

I can give you another "twist" on "always frame to be best quality" regarding exhibitions. Most judges consider the frame and painting to be a total package, just as was emphasized in the above thread. I've seen an otherwise award winning work be passed over by a judge because the framing was absolutely horrid - truly dime store quality thin metal frame with corners that were popping, and a the paper mat that probably came with it. The comment was, "Too bad this artist doesn't have enough pride in their work to present it properly."

I also know most judges prefer good quality wood frames over metal frames on pastels. The wood can be gilded gold or some natural color such as oak, cherry, or mahogany, but not usually an unnatural color such as red, blue or yellow, etc. This doesn't mean some judges don't like metal or that if the metal frame is an expensive one with corners properly meeting and a nice matting job to go with it that it will be overlooked. I'm speaking in general terms.

One reason many artists use the same frame for all their work when they have a show of their own is because it reflects that they feel every single one of their paintings has the same value to them. Sometimes the public wonders what the artist feels about the painting that has a cheap frame versus the one with a gilded gold frame when to them they look like equally nice paintings - or they may even like the painting in the cheap frame more, but will hesitate to buy it because they think the artist feels there is something not as valuable about it.

Bottom line: If you want others to recognize the pride you feel for the work presented, then frame it accordingly. Painting and framing are a package deal whether it is for a gallery sale or exhibition.

Peggy

Donna A
03-17-2006, 06:34 PM
I think Peggy has said it perfectly! With her having been responsible for so many aspects of the IAPS shows and her other show experiences----and then her just really great eye-----she is in the perfect situation to share from real knowledge and experience!

When Peggy says the frame and painting really need to be understood as a whole package----YES! I've seen people put a reel purty frame on some painting that should never even have been in the same room with that frame! :-)

In April, our MidAmerica Pastel Society Program will be on Refurbing Frames to make them work WITH a particular painting. I'm doing a handout sheet for it and will post it when I get it done. Started when I needed to frame a very low intensity landscape for a MAPS show and, ever so busy, all I had on hand was a very, very bright shiney GOLD frame! So----I refurbed it! Layers of this and that and t'other! A lot of folks commented on how the frame complimented the painting and how amazingly they worked together and where did I ever find it, etc. :-) So---thought it would make a great program. Am working with two of our MAPS artists with frames they have, refurbing them to work with particular paintings. One had made really good buys on plain old (usually horrid) oak frames. We've fixed several up to absolutely sing!!! So----just want to inspire you all to do the same. Study some of the really fine frame finishes at good art framers shops. Imagine how they might have accomplished this and that, what kind of surfaces, textures, layers, spatterings, etc. they might have used. You usually want to build several subtle layers! Be adventursome!

You can even refurb metal frames!!! Some can look pretty----hmmmm. So---you can actually prime them with Art Spectrum Primer!!!! Of any of the 16 colors! And that will set up such a great ground to work on to! You may want to use 2 layers. Then you can use water color, oil, anything!!! Seal with mat or shiney finishes! Wow!!! OR----if you are using an AS Colourfix paper with some of the paper showing thru-----prime a narrow frame with the same colored Primer----and then do a marvelous 3" linen-covered mat---or linen liner----and you will have a gorgeous, elegant and complete package!!!!

ps----I ALWAYS use a linen---or linen-like fabric rather than a paper mat on my pastel paintings. Think it just looks like I take it more seriously. But---have seen some gorgeously framed pastels with paper mats. Just think it is that one bit classier! And not all that hard to just cover a mat! Very best wishes!!! Donna ;-}

PeggyB
03-17-2006, 08:24 PM
OK, now Donna has jarred my memory. I do believe I once promised to write about how to make a fabric wrapped mat. So, here goes. If the mods want to move this, that's ok with me. This information is something I wrote years ago, and shared with pastel societies around the world through IAPS.

Fabric Wrapped Mats

Don't throw out that mat that's been soiled or has an over cut - wrap it with fabric! So long as the image edges are square, you need not waste it.

Until you are more practiced, I recommend you use a rather tightly woven "linen type" of fabric rather than silk or silk like fabric. It may be poylester, linen, cotton, or a blend of fibers so long as the weave is tight so it won't fray as easily when cut. Broadcloth or sportsweave canvas may also be used as it doesn't have to be an expensive speciality fabric, but if your pocket book says use the speciality fabric, then go for it! If the fabric has a fold line, it must first be removed before beginning your project. If an initial ironing won't get it out, put a little WHITE vinegar in your steam iron and press again. The proportion of vineager to water doesn't seem to matter, but if the first try doesn't work, add more vineager. Use only white vineager!

1. Start by cutting the fabric about 1" larger than the size of the mat. Do not cut out the middle just now.

2. Evenly spray an adhesive such as 3M 77 Super Spray Professional Adhesive on the back side of a mat (bevel-side is considered the "wrong" side in this case as it will assure a sharper edge to the mat.) If you want a bevel edge to show, cut a 1/4" foam core mat. Don't worry about over cuts when cutting the foam core as they will be covered with fabric. When using foam core, spray the bevel edge side with adhesive.

3. Place the wrong side of the fabric on the sprayed surface. Try to lay the fabric grain parallel with the edges of the mat if there is an obvious grain. Gently smooth out the surface, and then firmly press into place with clean hands! (some people wear clean white gloves). At this point you may want to cover the fabric with brown paper and use a warm iron to further guarantee a tight bond if the fabric is heavy.

4. Turn the fabric covered mat over. Using a sharp utility knife, cut out the center (image opening), leaving about 1" to 1 1/2 " of fabric along the image opening to turn the fabric.

5. Carefully cut diagonally almost all the way into the inside corners. Don't cut all the way now as you can always go further later, but you can't "repair" if you cut too deeply now!

6. Apply double backed tape (ATG tape) to the inside edge of the mat near the fabric.

7. Cut a "spatula" no larger than 4" x 6" from a clean scrap of mat board. Starting in the middle of one side, put the "spatula" under the fabric and firmly lift and roll it towards the back of the mat - wrapping the image edge of the mat with the fabric. Don't work all the way to the corners yet.

8. Now is the time to decide if you've cut the diagonal corners enough. If not, go slowly and complete the cut. Then, using a toothpick or unbent paper clip (or broom straw?) apply a small amount of thinned fabric glue to the corners near the fabric and finish pulling them back with the "spatula". "Tacky" glue is a good brand to use and will prevent fraying and give a tight bond to the corners. It can be found in most craft or fabric stores.

9. Cover the rolled back edges with acid free framers tape to help hold them in place if you aren't going to use a spacer. Since most pastels have some sort of spacer to hold the mat away from the pastel surface and provide a space for dust to fall, this step may be eliminated because the spacer will cover the edges of the fabric.

10. Trim the fabric on the outer edges of the mat. Dont worry about fraying as it will be covered by the frame. If however you do want to seal the fabric edge, use a little Tacky glue.

11. Apply the spacer to the back of the mat as usual.


If you have questions, please ask but I can't guarantee an answer you'll understand! :D

Peggy

Donna A
03-17-2006, 09:06 PM
OK---and our Peggy has jogged MY memory---what I have left of it! :-) I have illustrations, that might be useful to some----but----I have not yet posted all the detailed instructions as Peggy has so brilliantly done---other than several cursory notes for each of the step-by-step pictures. http://www.aldridgestudios.com/610-WrapLinenLnrs.html

Peggy's information is excellent and we are so fortunate that she has again shared it!!! Thanks, Peggy! And check out the pictures on the url! Might help, too! Donna ;-}

PeggyB
03-17-2006, 09:56 PM
Gosh - why didn't we just get together on this in the first place? Oh! We live a half continentent away from one another? There are days I really really regret that.. :crying:

Peggy

Donna A
03-17-2006, 11:20 PM
Gosh - why didn't we just get together on this in the first place? Oh! We live a half continentent away from one another? There are days I really really regret that.. :crying:

Peggy

Gotta say-----your comment pretty well paraphrases what was rambling thru my mind as I was posting! :-) Let's talk! :-) Donna ;-}

Kathryn Wilson
03-18-2006, 09:33 AM
There is so much valuable information in this thread that I think I would like for each of you (Peggy and Donna, and anyone else with helpful tips) to think about doing an Article for our forum.

We have in place an Article program that you work with and fill in with photos and instructions.

How's about it? I think one on wrapping mats with linen would be good for one, and the one about refurbing a frame could be another one. (I'll go back through the thread to see if anything else needs to be pulled together.)

Let me know by PM and I can get you started if you agree. Thanks for all the wonderful information you two have shared with the forum! :clap: :clap: :clap:

(The "how-to" on photographing paintings for slide submissions to shows is another good one.)

Donna A
03-18-2006, 02:29 PM
Hi, Kyle! Sounds fine to me! Take good care! Donna ;-}

chewie
03-18-2006, 07:16 PM
this has been an amazing thread. thanks very much to donna and peggy, your advice is sooo appreciated by those of us who need your help!!

after taking a class from donna, i too have done those fabric mats, and i gotta tell ya, not real tough, and wow!! they make a painting look so much more prof. and valueable!! i now use AFX, which is acid free board like mat, only without any pretty colored top. its real cheap, and if i'm wrapping anyhow, its a good move. i also use it for a backing, so i now get it by the case. i use a cotton type fabric, that has a tan-ish, natural color, with tiny flecks in it, which i think looks great with my subject matters.

and i too rate this as excellent!! thanks to you both, donna and peggy, this is great!!

Kathryn Wilson
03-18-2006, 07:29 PM
I was thinking on this thread this morning and came up with a great idea for people to find out quickly what is in a thread. It will be time consuming, but I think worth it.

As a Moderator I can go in and edit my very first post to include an index to the thread, such as 1) subject discussed and 2) which number post it can be found at.

What do you guys think?

scall0way
03-20-2006, 03:30 PM
I think that sounds like a great idea about including an index. This is such an incredible thread. Not sure I'm anywhere near having the nerve to enter a show, and the whole framing issue still scares me, and I'm still not sure I even understand 'spacers' yet, have never seen them or used them. Not even sure how I would go about it - but I love everything I have read here.

scall0way
03-21-2006, 11:02 AM
I've just started entering shows, as I've been painting for less than a year. I've entered two national shows so far, and was accepted to both!

Kim, you amaze me. I'm so impressed. I think you and I have been painting about roughly the same amount of time. Yet here you are entering national shows, etc. I still don't even have a clue about how to go about it, let alone even *dream* of entering something. Of course your work is stunning so the fact that you were accepted does not surprise me at all.

And I'm so impressed with your blog too. I remember when you first set it up,
during the blogging discussion, and now it looks so incredibly professional.

I think I'll have to start up a "Kim Denise" fan club. You'll have to start giving lessons on all this stuff. :D

scall0way
03-21-2006, 11:19 AM
The framing discussion has been interesting, and the bit about making linen mats. Peggy's description of the process was perfectly clear, except that my eyes were glazing over from it. I kept thinking, "I wish I could just see some *pictures* of the process." Then I saw Donna's pictures and it all became clear to me! The stuff that had seemed like Greek to me when I first read Peggy's post had become crystal clear on the second reading, after having Donna's pictures in mind. I may have to try that one of these days, just for fun. I'm still not *totally* sure about the avoiding of little stray threads of fabric poking out in the corners. I guess glue is involved but I would worry about getting glue all over the front of the mat. But maybe that is just me. I never seem to be able to do anything without making a mess.

The link to the framing discussion in the Oil Painting thread was so interesting and I agree with many of the points on presenting your art. As an artist I agree, yet as a potential buyer I don't. Of course take what I say with a grain of salt, :lol:, as I am a notorious cheapskate. I do not have many original works of art around the house (that I didn't paint myself). Okay, I have *two* actually, both purchased at an Art Festival held in my town every year.

Both were purchased unframed. I would *never* buy a work of art that was already framed. I would greatly resent having to pay an extra surcharge for something not of my own choosing. If I'm buying I want to but Art, not Packaging. But the thread on framing talks about the frame being about 10% of the price. Maybe in that case I would consider it. But at the art show in town every year the framed paintings typically sell for about triple the price of the unframed ones. The unframed watercolor I bought one year (many years ago) cost $45 unframed, but the artist was selling similar framed works for $125.

Likewise I paid $300 for the oil painting I bought a number of years ago, but the artist was selling similar framed oil paintings for about $1000.

So I admit my experience is limited as I don't actually go to art shows or sales very often. Maybe I should go more! But in the ones I have been to the framed pieces go for so much incredibly more than that unframed ones that I just take a look, and then turn and walk away.

Orchidacea
03-21-2006, 03:38 PM
I think I'll have to start up a "Kim Denise" fan club. You'll have to start giving lessons on all this stuff. :D

Now I'm embarrassed. It's okay, it's just weird...I've never had a "fan" before, lol. I'm a fan of yours too, by the way.

It's funny about this whole art thing--ever since I started doing it last summer (after a brief flirtation with it five years before), I've felt like I'm in fast-forward. I've never been a high-energy, high-activity person, but here I am working a full-time job and also spending full-time hours on painting and now marketing. It's as if something got activated in me.

My whole life until now, I've wondered when I would finally decide what I want to do when I grow up. I've been interested in many things, and done many different things, but was passionate about nothing--until now. Starting to paint was like having a light come on. Everything looks different, everything feels different, and I feel like a different person. And I'm so darn happy! I can't quite believe it myself.

I've done so many things I've never done before...creating the blog, putting up a website (it's new--take a look!), entering shows...honestly I can't explain it. It's like that incredible energy you get when you're newly in love (nice to know, though, that my pastels will never leave me for another!)

Of course, I've had incredible online support, here at WC and privately, which has made all the difference. God bless the Internet :).

Thanks for saying such nice things. It really makes me feel so good.

Karen Margulis
03-21-2006, 03:59 PM
Kim, I'm a fan too! I have been following your work and blog and now your website which is looking great! Your story is so similar to mine too...only I have just now gotten the courage to try to enter some shows. This thread is so helpful and timely! Thanks to all who have taken time to write.
Karen

Kathryn Wilson
03-21-2006, 04:41 PM
Just in case anyone wants to know - :) - the Index to the Thread has been installed.

I'd like some feedback on its usefulness - if we have other threads like this one, we may do it on a regular basis.

scall0way
03-22-2006, 03:21 PM
putting up a website (it's new--take a look.

Wow, looking very nice. I see you have your own domain registered and everything. You go, girl. I'm so impressed.

scall0way
03-22-2006, 03:23 PM
Wow, I *love* the index idea! What a fantastic idea for a long thread. Another thread that I thought was incredible, but pages long, that could benefit from an index like this, is the one on blogging.

Orchidacea
03-22-2006, 08:25 PM
I wondered what you meant when you said you indexed it...now I know! That's fantastic, Kat! Thank you!

(And thanks to Debbie and Karen...you guys are too nice!)

Donna A
03-22-2006, 10:22 PM
<<snip>>The link to the framing discussion in the Oil Painting thread was so interesting and I agree with many of the points on presenting your art. As an artist I agree, yet as a potential buyer I don't. Of course take what I say with a grain of salt, :lol:, as I am a notorious cheapskate. I do not have many original works of art around the house (that I didn't paint myself). Okay, I have *two* actually, both purchased at an Art Festival held in my town every year.

Both were purchased unframed. I would *never* buy a work of art that was already framed. I would greatly resent having to pay an extra surcharge for something not of my own choosing. If I'm buying I want to but Art, not Packaging. But the thread on framing talks about the frame being about 10% of the price. Maybe in that case I would consider it. But at the art show in town every year the framed paintings typically sell for about triple the price of the unframed ones. The unframed watercolor I bought one year (many years ago) cost $45 unframed, but the artist was selling similar framed works for $125.

Likewise I paid $300 for the oil painting I bought a number of years ago, but the artist was selling similar framed oil paintings for about $1000.

So I admit my experience is limited as I don't actually go to art shows or sales very often. Maybe I should go more! But in the ones I have been to the framed pieces go for so much incredibly more than that unframed ones that I just take a look, and then turn and walk away.

When an artist really frames their painting well, rather than just sticking some wood or somethin' around it, cheap or pricey, the whole combination works as a ONE, like a very well-tuned engine or orchestra-----solid, unified!

So you are probably often seeing framing that is not at it's best! And I would certainly have trouble finding that "worth it!" as you are!!! yep! There is such an art to framing as well as painting!!! And sounds like some of the painters do not have a wholesale place to purchase---or.....??? I feel very fortunate. I can go down to Picture and Frames Ind. and pick out one or more frames and they will be ready in a little over 24 hours! Sooooo nice! Wholesale and exquisite! Good to find a similar resource! Helps a LOT! :-) Take good care! Donna ;-}

Kathryn Wilson
03-22-2006, 10:45 PM
Thanks, Kim, I assumed everyone would know what I was talking about -

Please see Post #1 for the Index to the Thread - I've included all the pertinent posts so that they can be easily found. A first for WC - I think.

Orchidacea
03-22-2006, 10:51 PM
Thanks, Kim, I assumed everyone would know what I was talking about -


I missed the post where you introduced the idea--I just saw it a little while ago when I was re-reading the thread.

CindyW
03-25-2006, 03:47 PM
That's great to index the thread!
Here's another question about tax numbers to the well seasoned vets...from a newbie to shows and competitions.

I would like to buy wholesale frames (as Donna suggests) but don't have the required "state resale tax certificate" one site asks for...

and...

If I am regularly employed outside of my art world.... and would like to enter juried art shows that request artwork have a sale price... and that painting sells (oh, sure, uh huh!), I should have a tax number already, yah?

I need both of these, right? Do I need any other tax info in order to enter shows and sell the show artwork? Like, does every state need me to get a number from them? So green, I know. But, maybe others don't know this either. Thanks!
Cindy

MarshaSavage
03-25-2006, 05:58 PM
Cindy,
In Georgia, I have a sales tax ID # which requires that I submit monthly, or quarterly, or yearly Sales Tax Reports. It depends on how much revenue you collect. Since I sell mostly through retail establishments - they collect the tax, so they submit it to the state. I have had mine long enough that I have done the monthly, then they asked if I wanted quarterly since I rarely collect any tax. This year they required that I go to "yearly" reporting because I rarely have any tax to submit to them.

When I submit my report, I report my sales, but it is exempt/deductible, since the tax has already been collected and paid by someone else. I use that number to buy my supplies and frames at wholesale price. If I sell a piece on my own, then I have to charge tax, or just pay it out of my own selling price - which is usually the best way. I then have to submit the money with my report.

When you enter a show, they should have their own sales tax ID number. They should collect the tax and submit it. Outside shows have different rules and each one does things different. Competitions usually are run by someone that has a Sales Tax ID #, so they collect tax on sales and submit it.

My sales tax ID # is not good in another state. Some states will recognize it and not charge tax, some won't.

Some people don't want the hassle of having the number and then having to do the reporting. I think it is worth it. It gets me into the wholesale framer and the wholesale framing supply company. Makes a big difference in my expenses to only have to pay wholesale prices -- half price on frames and supplies.

Doesn't matter whether you are holding a job outside the art world! If you can show a reason to have the tax number, then you should get one!

Pat Isaac
03-25-2006, 06:25 PM
That is my take on the whole issue of a tax number. The shows that I enter have their own tax # should anything sell. I don't have one as yet, but am thinking of getting one, mainly for the purpose of getting wholesale prices on frames and supplies. The amount of work that I sell myself is small, but I now have a gallery who wants to buy my notecards and giclees outright at a discount price and that is why I am thinking of getting one.

Pat

PeggyB
03-25-2006, 06:47 PM
Cindy, each state has different rules and regulations regarding a sales tax number. They also don't all have the same department through which to inquire getting one. I suggest you ask someone in business whom to contact in your state.

My situation is similar to Marsha's, but since I don't sell direct to anyone anymore, my tax number is used strictly to be able to buy wholesale - and get my Costo card! The state notified me several years ago that I don't even have to file yearly anymore unless I do sell direct. If I do, I will, but it sure is easy now not having to report "no direct sales"...

Having your work sell through competitions is no different than having it sell through a gallery. The show venue (gallery or museum) will collect and pay the taxes.


Peggy

ColorOfMagic
03-26-2006, 02:20 PM
I've been fairly successful in entering national shows though I haven't entered many recently... I've attached a text file of an article that I wrote back in the 90's. I haven't updated it or edited it therefore it is pot luck, but I think it is still topical for this thread:

(Questions are welcome)
Jim

Title:
Color Slides -
An Important Element of Success

LostInWonderArt
03-27-2006, 09:15 PM
I just wanted to pop up about the tax numbers. I have one for my home state, and it's really effortless to do. I have it, because I go to festivals and sell artwork myself. I also do commission work, so I have it to collect tax for those.

But, last year, I decided that I wanted to branch out to a neighboring state for shows. I have family there, so I'd be able to do a couple of festivals while visiting them. I called their department of revenue (in my state, I got it from the secretary of state's office). I told him that I was calling from out of state, that I would want to apply for their equivalency of a transient vendor's license, so that I could sell artwork at festivals in their state.

Now, in my state, it was a single sheet of paper form, and $25, which is good until you cancel it.

I get their envelope in the mail. It's a BOOK. I proceed to spend more than an hour filling out 18 pages, FRONT AND BACK. When I get to the top of page 19, it actually says, "If you conduct an art or craft business, you require a different book to file for your tax license."

I tore it up, flushed it down the toilet, and went outside and kissed the ground that is Ohio.

The words of wisdom on tax licenses that I can give, is be sure that you pay your sales tax on time. I have a friend who gets hit with a $50 fine, because they forget to file that they've had no taxable sales on time.

I'm also of the mind that I always charge tax on top of my pricing. The reason is that in Ohio, our tax is different in different counties. I've sold in as many as 7 counties in one tax period. This way, my price stays consistent, and I just change the tax rate. I have a small sign that has the types of payments that I accept, and it also says, "All prices are before sales tax." I've never had a customer complain about me adding tax to the price. Though, another artist told me that if someone does say something, she just explains that the sales tax benefits the community where the event is.

When you do go to art festivals, be sure to take a copy of your tax license with you. I haven't had it happen, but I have heard that government people troll events for those that are either fraudulently collecting sales tax, or not charging tax (meaning that they're running their business under the table). They will probably give you time to show a license, but if you have it on the spot, you can avoid any complications.

Finally, I know in Ohio, when we charge sales tax, we have to provide an itemized receipt, showing the purchase price, and tax charged. I just use those booklets from office max, or the slips from the people who process credit cards for me.

Maureen

Donna A
03-31-2006, 09:36 PM
Great comments for Cindy and everyone else, Maureen and Peggy and all! It is just as well to go ahead and apply for a sales tax number if you plan to sell your works. It is quite easy in most cases.

And, as Peggy said---most juried shows in a gallery location have their own tax number and do the collecting of monies and then pay the artist their commission and the state their sales tax. We've made a point of doing that in MAPS since we do have a lot of artists who do not often exhibit other than in our members' open shows.

It does save paying sales tax on your artist materials, so that can be quite worth it. That way, tax is not paid twice on the same materials, which is only fair! The end buyer should be the one paying for the materials tax. Best wishes! Donna ;-}

Orchidacea
03-31-2006, 09:41 PM
It does save paying sales tax on your artist materials, so that can be quite worth it. That way, tax is not paid twice on the same materials, which is only fair! The end buyer should be the one paying for the materials tax. Best wishes! Donna ;-}


So if I had a tax ID number, I wouldn't have to pay sales tax at the art supply store?

MarshaSavage
04-01-2006, 08:27 AM
On certain materials you would not pay sales tax. It has to be materials that go into the production of another piece of art. Usually your equipment is taxed since it is not part of a piece that will be sold again.

PeggyB
04-02-2006, 01:07 AM
So if I had a tax ID number, I wouldn't have to pay sales tax at the art supply store?

It depends upon the state. In Washington, we have a choice of paying when we purchase our supplies or when we sell the work - either way the state gets their money. Since I hate reporting paperwork and don't sell anything directly to a client, I just pay it when I purchase my supplies and that way there's no papework. I use my number to get wholesale and professional discounts, and that's about it. If ever I get ambitious enough to do art fairs or home studio shows, then I'll have to start reporting and collecting taxes - ugh! I prefer gallery representation!

Bottom line, contact your state authority for the necessary information.

Peggy

bjcpaints
04-04-2006, 02:27 PM
The words of wisdom on tax licenses that I can give, is be sure that you pay your sales tax on time. I have a friend who gets hit with a $50 fine, because they forget to file that they've had no taxable sales on time.

I'm also of the mind that I always charge tax on top of my pricing. The reason is that in Ohio, our tax is different in different counties. I've sold in as many as 7 counties in one tax period. This way, my price stays consistent, and I just change the tax rate. I have a small sign that has the types of payments that I accept, and it also says, "All prices are before sales tax." I've never had a customer complain about me adding tax to the price. Though, another artist told me that if someone does say something, she just explains that the sales tax benefits the community where the event is.

When you do go to art festivals, be sure to take a copy of your tax license with you. I haven't had it happen, but I have heard that government people troll events for those that are either fraudulently collecting sales tax, or not charging tax (meaning that they're running their business under the table). They will probably give you time to show a license, but if you have it on the spot, you can avoid any complications.

Finally, I know in Ohio, when we charge sales tax, we have to provide an itemized receipt, showing the purchase price, and tax charged. I just use those booklets from office max, or the slips from the people who process credit cards for me.

Maureen

Oh yeah, I got hit with that $50. fine here in NY when they changed my due dates from quarterly to annual. My experience comes from 4 years of doing craft shows. Always have your tax ID Displayed! I keep track like you do Maureen - with a receipt book - different counties, different rates - the dates allow me to look up what show I was working at.

Great thread BTW!
Barbara