My First Experience as a Jury Member

I was asked to be a jury member for a state wide artist association. Artists from my state were applying for membership in the association, not for a show, so it was different than the jury process for art fairs. Still, it was very interesting. Here is what I learned:

1) Sharp, clear photos are extremely important. Some were a bit out of focus, made even worse when projected.

2) Detailed descriptions of technique and materials were more helpful than artist history or bio.

3) Seeing a series of the same style was better than seeing a range of styles.

4) We as artists have no control over the environment in which the jury will see our work.

5) If you get rejected, don't take it personally. In our case, we wrote comments that will hopefully help these artists in future jury situations.

While I felt great pressure to understand each category, I was most comfortable with the jewelry. We had a good group of jury members from a wide range of art fields. I really enjoyed the experience.

Robin Ragsdale

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  • Thanks Robins for the good advice.  I am sure it is helpful to many.  Glad you got a chance to try the jurying experience.

  • Thanks for that Robin - a good insight!

  • Reallly interesting and good info.  Thanks, Robin!

  • Like I said, it wasn't like an art show jury. We had plenty of time to look at each photo and even discuss some key points. This jury was determining if the applicants were qualified to be full artist members of the association. We really wanted to help them build their skills and improve their presentations and get in next time if not now. I remembered how much I appreciated the comments when I was an applicant to the same association.

    Robin Ragsdale

  • I just wanted to thank you Robin, that you took time to write comments at the jury.  I think a lot of people that are new to the business would really appreciate seeing them.

  • Actually that isn't uncommon. There have been a number of times I've been asked by artists for whom I've uploaded images, if they want the pixel dimensions of the picture of the piece.

    Larry Berman

  • These entries were made via Entrythingy and the descriptions were read to us as we looked at the photos. One person didn't understand the part about listing the dimensions of their pieces. They gave us the pixel dimensions of their photos!

  • Unless the shows change the setting from the default, it's now 200 characters for the artist statement on ZAPP, which means about fifteen words instead of about eight. Not much better. The real question is whether or not the jurors read, or have it read to them during the jury process. I've witnessed both.

    Good review Robin, and it always helps to reinforce the basics about image quality and how you choose which images to apply with.

    Larry Berman

  • Thanks, Robin...very useful perspective.

    One of my pet peeves: Shows that ask for a description of process, but give you only 100 characters (!) to do so.  I can't do that justice wtht skppg th vwls. 

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