BY ANNE BELOV
Jan. 31, 2014
It’s always a dangerous thing to give power to someone, but darn if that isn’t just what the folks behind the screen at Whidbey Life Magazine have done.
Last fall, they asked me if I would be interested in selecting and inviting visual artists to appear on the Virtual Gallery Page here at the magazine. So, I said sure, and it has mostly gone pretty well, except when there are people who are less technologically adept than I am. My knowledge is shallow yet narrow, so it doesn’t take much to flummox me, in the tech realms.
Be that as it may, now that we are moving away from a membership based model, ALL artists, not just members, are eligible to have their work displayed in the Virtual Gallery. If you are wondering what an appearance here in these digital pages might do for you, here is a recent comment from Diane Tompkinson, whose work was featured in October 2013:
I wanted to thank you and the staff of Whidbey Life Magazine for the opportunities that have come my way since being featured as one of the visual artists for October this past year. Because of that feature and story, I was invited to participate in a pop-up market for ten weeks where I did very well. Additionally, that exposure led to being invited to be a featured artist this year by two different art galleries on Whidbey Island for the coming year. It is wonderful what some exposure can do in terms of future opportunities. Thanks so much.
I thought it might be helpful to share some FAQ’s about the Virtual Gallery, since up until this point, the gallery was by invitation only. I will still invite people whose work I think needs to be seen by a wider audience, but now we are inviting artists to submit work for consideration for the Virtual Gallery without any prompting from us. We know you’re out there!
Virtual gallery F.A.Q.’s
What is the Virtual Gallery?
The Virtual Gallery is a Whidbey Life Magazine forum to showcase the work of visual artists on Whidbey Island.
How often do you change the work in the Virtual Gallery?
Every month, we profile two artists, who have some common thread to their work.
Are there other benefits to being a Virtual Gallery Artist?
A feature story on each of the artists in the VG is assigned to one of our excellent writers at WLM, during the month of your show. These stories bring additional attention to the work of the artists showing in the VG. The previous VG’s are archived and can be accessed by readers of WLM.
Why would I want to show my work here?
You have the opportunity to reach readers of WLM who might not be aware of your work. Previous Virtual Gallery features have resulted in new exhibition venues and offers of representation for artists, leading to more sales of work. Read the testimonial above, written by Diane Tompkinson. (Actual results may vary and are not guaranteed.)
You can submit work to the Virtual Gallery Curator, for consideration. The VGC will consider the work submitted and determine with whom to pair your work. (More about the specific requirements to follow below) Send submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org
What if I want to show my work in a specific month?
When you submit your work, you MAY request a specific month if, for example, you have an upcoming exhibition for that month. We cannot guarantee that we can fulfill these requests, but we will do our best to accommodate requests made at least six months in advance.
What will I need in order to get my work into the Virtual gallery?
You will need:
- A short artist’s bio of 150 to no more than 350 words, saved as a word .doc (NOT .docx)
- An artist statement of no more than 350 words, saved as a word .doc (NOT .docx)
- Information on where to find your work: website, gallery, including links if available, etc.
- A numbered information sheet, listing all the titles, medium and sizes of the work submitted, saved as a word .doc (NOT .docx)
- 20 high quality images of your work
How do I prepare my images for the VG?
- Images must be saved as jpgs. at 72 res.
- The largest dimension in either direction should be 600 ppi at 72 res.
- File names should be formatted exactly as follows:
01.Title, medium, size. Example: 01. La Giaconda, oil on linen, 20×16
- DO NOT use any of the following characters within your file names:
“ : ; – / in other words, no quotation marks, colon or semicolons, dashes or slashes. You may use commas to separate title from medium from size.
What if I’m a technological Luddite who doesn’t know how to format or name my images?
We can connect you with someone to format your images for you for a fee of $35 an hour. If your photos are of high quality, expect to pay for one hour of editing time minimum. You will need to supply the information sheet as specified above.
What if my photos are beyond redemption?
We can suggest a photographer on the Island to photograph your work. If you give them the specifications for the VG, they can include resizing of the full size images, for their customary hourly charge.
What happens once I’m accepted into the VG?
Once you have a month assigned, you will be sent a dropbox folder into which you’ll put all of the aforementioned items. Even if you have previously submitted these materials to the VGC, YOU will have to put these items directly into the dropbox folder that was sent by our website tech guru. Please do not set up your own dropbox folder to share with us.
What are the deadlines to submit?
At the present time, there are no deadlines for initial submissions (don’t make me regret saying this.) Once you have been accepted for a specific month, please have all the materials ready no later than the 15th of the month preceding your assigned month.
Are there any suggested bribes with which I can ply the VGC to gain expedited exhibition of my work?
The current VGC is especially fond of cuppycakes, particularly with butter cream frosting.
Anne Belov is a visual artist, cartoonist and writer living on an island in the Pacific Northwest. You can find her paintings at The Rob Schouten Gallery in Greenbank, WA, her cartoons on her blog The Panda Chronicles, and read her guest posts on Whidbey Life Magazine, an on-line journal of arts, food, and culture on Whidbey Island. Her first book was funded by her second successful Kickstarter project. Her only regret in life is that there is no MacArthur Grant awarded for panda satire.
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