BUILD YOUR ART CAREER

3 May

CHALMERS ARTS FELLOWSHIPS

Chalmers Arts Fellowships are grants intended for individual professional artists in Ontario to conduct self-directed research to further develop their artistic practice and creative ability in ways likely to generate long-term artistic and career development.

DEADLINE: June 1, 2011

VISUAL ARTS PROJECTS

The Visual Arts Projects program provides grants up to $10,000 to assist organizations, collectives, or independent curators to present projects that exhibit, document or disseminate the work of professional Ontario visual artists, or provide professional development opportunities for artists.

DEADLINE: June 15, 2011

WRITERS WORKS IN PROGRESS

The Writers Works in Progress grant is meant to assist professional writers to complete book-length works of literary merit.

DEADLINE: June, 15, 2011

NORTHERN ARTS

The Norther Arts grant funds arts activity in Northern Ontario by Northern artists and arts organizations.

DEADLINE: July 4, 2011

BUILDING A WEBSITE

21 Mar

 

 

If you’re like me you may find that you procrastinate on the things that you aren’t that confident doing. For example, building a website for your work. You may not know what templates work best for artists, maybe you are unsure of where to look to get your hosting or domain (maybe you don’t even know what those words are), whatever the case, having a website that shows your workbio and CV is very important when starting your career.

The first thing you will want to do is pick a domain name that works best for you and your work. For example, my domain is chrissypoitras.com. If people want to search for my work they will be more likely to look up my name in a search engine. If you decide to use something other than your name make sure you think it through and have a good way of making people aware that when searching for you they should search that name in google/yahoo/etc.

Next you will need to purchase that domain name (we use godaddy.com).  You should purchase the .com and .ca versions of your site if you are from the USA or Canada. This will ensure that people typing in your site can type either and find you.

Now that you have your domain name purchased you should purchase you hosting service. You can also do this through godadddy.com.

NOW, before I go too far, there are other options as well. You can use sites like otherpeoplespixels.com where you can pick your template, purchase your domain and hosting all in one spot and they work only with artists.

If you decide you want to get a blog template you can either set it up with godaddy.com so that your domain name doesn’t look like this: chrissypoitras.blogspot.com. OR if you don’t really care about having .wordpress or .bloodspot, etc tagged onto the latter part of your domain than you don’t necessarily need to purchase a domain name or hosting service at all.

Have I lost you yet??

I hope not. Lets just recap:

1. Think about what you want you site to be called. Either name it after yourself so that it is an easy search for galleries and potential buyers OR pick something different that relates to your work (just make sure this makes sense before doing so).

2. Think about whether you want to purchase your domain name and hosting services OR if you are fine with having WordPress or Blogspot or Tumblr adding their name at the end of your domain. Once you have decided continue to either start your blog or purchase you domain and hosting.

Now that you have made your choice you can start looking through the many online templates. You can find several different styles at the sites listed below. Your hosting/domain service should have a great troubleshooting service and can help you upload your template to your website.

Artist Website Templates:

artistportfoliowebsite.com

otherpeoplespixels.com

foliolink.com

foliosnap.com

foliotwist.com

mosaicglobe.com

bigblackbag.com

indexhibit.org

cargocollective.com

 

Blog Websites:

blogger.com

wordpress.com

tumblr.com

Now that you have your template start populating it. Select the work that best represents who you are. Put up your bio, contact information, artist statement and CV. All of these items will give viewers an idea of who you are and what you are about.

You can also post your work on these sites:

artsetter.com

flickr.com

myartspace.com

behance.net

deviantart.com

These sites bring in different clients and it is always a good idea to get your work out on as many sites as possible. This will give you more chance to get noticed.

If you decided that the template sites aren’t your thing you can always hire someone to help you with your website. These can get expensive and it is generally a good idea to have the capability to edit/update your website on your own.

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PRESS RELEASES

11 Mar

These helpful tips come from editor of our local paper The Picton Gazette Adam Bramburger. These tips can be applied to any press release for any media outlet.

There’s a simple format that I teach reporters and people writing press releases to follow that I’ll pass along. This format should help them get the media’s attention. I think most people have watched the movie Austin Powers and remember my favourite character, Fat Bastard and his catch phrase “Get In ma belly.” Well, if they remember Get INMA, you’ll be set.

INMA to me, is an acronym with all the pertinent questions the media needs to know.

I – The Issue

Simply put, tell us what you’re about in a single sentence with focus – somebody doing something for a reason.   That’s enough to build a story on right there.

N –  What’s New

We need a hook to tell us what makes what you’re doing different than anything that hasn’t happened before and why it is timely right now for us to be there.

M – What it Means

We need to know why the average joe, whether they’re superbly interested in the arts or not should care that this development happened.  Give some context to let us know the broader hopes of what you want to accomplish.

A – What’s Ahead

This is where you make sure you relate to the community what they can do with relation to your event or project — get in the dates, prices, phone and e-mail whatever — and maybe leave them looking forward to things that will happen in the future.

Other things to consider:

1. Contact by email and phone (usually on the same day). Mention that you have sent an email or that you phoned earlier and that you are following up to ensure everything was received. Adam mentions that Wednesdays are the WORST days to try and get in touch with him, consider asking other media representatives the best or worst day to contact them.

2. Don’t clog up your press release with bios and photos. Keep it simple. Send all the additional information as added attachments.

3. Think about timing. It is best to send in a story two weeks before your event. This way the media can plan and have time to get your information out there.

4. Adam would like to reveal a press release myth, that media would rather have press releases or articles written by someone else and submitted in full to save time. For the Picton Gazette it is the exact opposite. They employ many reporters and journalists and they would much rather give them the job of writing about your event, putting together an interview and writing an article for the paper.

5. When you are drafting your press release for the media consider what they generally feature in their paper/magazine/website. The Picton Gazette enjoys featuring local artists who are engaging with the public, doing something interesting and different and enriching the community.

6. Always consider sending a one-line summation. Sometimes it might be a good thing to send as a subject line, as a headline on a press release or as a bold note.

7. It is always a good idea to give the time, date, and place in a simple to find manner.

GREAT CRAFT GUIDE

11 Nov

 

I just got a new book for the Spark Box Business Library today. The book is called Handmade Marketplace by Kari Chapin. I have read great things about this book on several different blogs and am pretty excited to sit down and give it a read. Basically Chapin breaks down the dos and don’ts of the craft industry and provides readers with helpful advice on starting your own craft business. Since Kyle and I have been putting up some prints and things onto our Etsy site I thought it might be helpful to know a little more about the craft industry. Once I give it a read I will pick out some of the most helpful advice I found.


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DESIGN AWARDS

11 Nov

 

Description

2011 SEGD Deisgn Awards (deadline January 31, 2011)

Exceptional environmental graphic design is recognized in the annual SEGD Design Awards Program, illustrating the pandisciplinary nature of visual communications in the built environment. The awards are conferred by multidisciplinary, international juries and the winners are honored at the SEGD Conference + Expo, featured in the award-winning segdDESIGN magazine, and on the SEGD website.

Who should enter?

* Environmental graphic designers
* Graphic designers
* Exhibit designers
* Landscape designers
* Interior designers
* Industrial designers
* Graphic artists
* Public artists
* Architects
* Fabricators
* Students
* Clients

What is eligible?

* Projects completed in 2008, 2009, or 2010 that demonstrate the use of graphic design elements in the design solution and focus on communication of information, identity, or image in the designed environment
* Student work completed in 2009 or 2010
* Projects from SEGD members and non-members
* Projects that were previously entered but did not win

For more information click here …

HELLO AND WELCOME TO THE EMERGING ARTIST GUIDE

5 Oct

This site has been designed to give artists and crafts people the information and resources needed to begin their journey to becoming art professionals.

Being an artist is difficult, especially when you’re just getting started. We know from personal experience that finding useful information can be a challenge. This guide is our way of helping you to get organized and hopefully answering some questions that may be on your mind.
So please… take your time and explore!

We are always eager to hear feedback so that we can add new information to the site so feel free to contact us if there is a question we haven’t answered. Suggestions, questions, or need more information?
Email us at info@sparkboxstudio.com
Or leave a comment below.

*This project is just getting underway and is by no means complete. We are working fast and hard to build this site.