Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals
The jury results for the Winter Park Sidewalk Art Fair (WPSAF) were announced via email last night. They were accompanied by a long communication, detailing changes in the park and parking, setup, and the usual litany of obligations and deadlines. But they did one thing right, and that was including the number of applications and data broken down by media.
Briefly, there were 1015 applications, and 225 spots. Of those spots, 32 were pre-juried award winners from the 2011 show.
This chart shows the breakdown, by medium, with the number of applicants (blue), and the number of accepted artists (red). By far, the highest number of applications received was in the painting category, followed by jewelry and photography. No surprises there.
The makeup of the show is fairly even, as you'd expect. Painting, jewelry and photography have a higher proportion of exhibitors compared to fiber, wood and digital art. The next chart shows this breakdown.
Congratulations to those accepted for the show! And to those who will be sitting this one out, my condolences. Best of luck in the continuing rejection season.
Now if they would only include this information on the "jury details" page as previous year's information when they open their application for the 2014 show.
That way artists can see what their odds were based on last years application numbers before they apply. If they can find the "jury details" page.
FYI it's a link under the show logo on the page where you press the "apply to this show" link.
Hmmm. Learned something else new today. The reply button doesn't work in discussions in Safari/Mac. Neither does the format bar appear in the editor. But it DOES work in Firefox. Ok then. On to my comment.
Larry, most of the shows on ZAPP don't even bother to list their jurors, or won't. I used to click that button until I was conditioned not to bother by the vast majority of blank pages I got when clicking.
And it hasn't gotten better with the upgrade. One of the things I suggested was to make that information mandatory for every show that uses ZAPP. They seem to be afraid to ask or require shows to fill out certain information. Or maybe they don't think that information is relevant.
It's the same with the description field. When I posted on the ZAPP forum that perhaps each jury image should carry its own description in the projected format, they were reticent to make that change. They claimed that since the field wasn't mandatory in the artist's portfolio, that they couldn't change the display.
Here we are, hijacking my own thread.
Shows are perfectly free to fill out/fill in whatever fields they want when they add their info to the Zapp site. Zapp is not the enforcer, just like Zapp is not choosing which shows use their system. The customer (the art fair) chooses.
I think you misunderstood my comment, Connie. The description of each jury piece is quite important to explain materials, context, whatever, and many artists fill this information out diligently, thinking that it is important in the jury process.
Sure shows can choose not to bother looking at this field. Of course that's their prerogative. However, since the field carries such important information, perhaps it should be mandatory. Both for the artist to fill out, and for jurors to read when looking at the individual image. Especially in off-site jurying, when each image can be viewed individually, and there is no time limit.
I personally use this field, to indicate where the photograph was taken, what type of processes were used to achieve the final result, and to indicate what type of prints are available for that image. It's not the same as the artistic statement, and arguably, more important to the overall understanding of what I do. I'm sure I'm not alone in thinking that if my careful descriptions are largely ignored, then perhaps the ZAPP system has a fundamental flaw that could be fixed.
Hmmm. Now the reply button is working in Safari. And the edit bar appears. Very odd behavior.
Jim, there were lots of wonky things going on on the sites the last couple of days, probably as a result of the East Coast weather troubles. That reply button is fine today on Safari/Mac.
What a novel idea! I love that they posted this information. Especially being in the <he-hmm> jewelry category where I am constantly hearing from one person or another that the shows are being overrun with jewelry. I never know if its just perception or fact regarding the breakdown. Thanks for posting this!
This is good info, now what does everyone do with it? I am interested in others' opinions here.
In my category 25 of 56 applicants made it into the show or were placed on the waitlist. This means I was not in their top 45% of applicants. After 2 years of rejections, I won't apply to this show again unless my work changes dramatically. It's not worth my $30. I feel I will never get into this show as long as I apply with my current body of work.
There is one thing that would change my opinion on this. If the shows let everyone know their score and the cut-off for acceptance, I could make better decisions. If I were to find out that I just missed the cut, I might continue to try to get into a show. But with the information I have, I feel I have to cut my losses and stop applying after 2 tries.
Winter Park can be a very good show, with an audience that is quite a bit different than typical Florida buyers. It's a loyal crowd, and they do spend money. The awards at this show are good, too, with over $65,000 in prize money. It's not particularly cheap to do, with booth fees at $475. And some of the booth locations are much worse than others.
It took me several tries to get into the show, and the first year I did it, it captured my personal best for sales at a single show. Then I didn't get in again for two or three years.
It's unlikely that they will post scores and cut-off limits. Some shows are very open to it, others just won't capture the data. Given that they have published the data for show applications, it's possible that they will respond favorably to requests for score data.
My own opinion on applying to shows is to look at the demographics, past performance at the show (if I've done it), how my style of work will sell in that market, and the ease of doing the show, among other factors. Certain shows I will continue to apply for even after a couple of rejections, if all of the factors seem favorable if accepted. I agree, however, that just shooting applications into a black hole without some good information is fruitless.