A cool thing about my instructor is that she is teaching us about the business of photography as well as the art. In the first class she talked about "putting yourself out there" by entering shows. She also talked about how you need to understand what the curator is looking for, and the type of shows they have put together in the past. Now you would think I would have just instinctively known that concept. After all, for my whole career it was all about "what the business leaders wanted". I would preach to newer technical folks how the best technical solution was not always right for the business, and the more you knew about the business and what the leaders wanted, the better you would be at creating the best solution.
So, when this juried show at TAC (The Art Center in HP) advertised call for entries, I went to work. I researched the curator and what he did. However, I was still confused since more of his own work was abstract. Then, before class two weeks ago, I was early (as usual) and the curator was there setting up the Art Shay exhibit (a must see at TAC through April 4th). My instructor introduced me. After a bit of chit chat, I asked him what he was looking for when we curates a show. What an opportunity! He said that there is never a particular style he seeks, however, he likes to see a selection that you can tell is from that artist. So, if you submit three items, they should look like they all come from the same artist.
Oh crap! Style? I have no particular style! I am still discovering who I am as an artist! What to do?
My teacher said we could go through some options in class and give advice for those wanting to submit to the show. I decided to group my photos into 3 styles: High contrast; scenes; square shots. The three at the top were from high contrast. The class seemed to have a consensus on this group of three photos. I submitted those to the show.
A couple from "scenes" were well received (the tree and the surfer), but I didn't have a third one that shouted out "pick me". The third one below was a possibility.
My squares were not so great, but my attempt to at least have something in color (not shown). In addition, my instructor saw these the week before and nixed them. She indicated that while they were pretty, they did not say "Jody". I get it, but I still like them. :-)
The curator told me something to remember. He said he first goes through and picks potential items for the show. He then takes a pass on good items that just don't fit well in the overall show. I can certainly use that as comfort if I don't get picked.
I find out on March 26th. Wish me luck!