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  • Writer's pictureUshrayinee

Things You Should Keep in Mind While Participating in an Open Art Competition

An Open Art competition is truly an event with unique charm. It’s a place where an artist can let their imagination roam freely, not bound by the constraints of an often-too-specific theme. But it can also be nerve-wracking in some ways. Without the bounds of a certain theme in mind, the imagination often rampages instead – what should one present when there are just so many options? With TERAVARNA’s Open Art Competition quickly approaching, we take a look at this issue and hopefully make it easier for artists to make a choice.

The first thing to consider when applying to an Open Art Competition is where your strengths lie. What subjects do you like portraying most? Where do you feel most at home in the artistic sphere? The question of subject and medium comes up here. Are you a John James Audubon-type, creating hand-painted plate after hand-painted plate of meticulously depicted birds? Maybe you’re like Georgia O’Keefe, creating one after another large-scale oil painting depicting close-ups of flowers. Whatever the case might be for you, look at what subjects and themes emerge and re-emerge throughout your works. Chances are, you’ve gotten quite good at depicting the subject if you’ve practiced it at least more than twice. Practice makes perfect, the cliché goes, and your understanding of the subject matter only gets stronger the more you approach it from different angles, at different times.

Take a look at the mediums you prefer as well. While an Open Art Competition might be a good place to slip in a submission that is quite experimental, if you’re looking for confidence in what you submit, why not take a look at the mediums you most prefer? Printmaker Gustave Dore (1832-1883) was most well-known for his woodcuts. If, hypothetically, he were to submit to TERAVARNA’s Open Art Competition, it would be surprising if he didn’t submit an engraving of some sort. While he was an illustrator as well, his most striking and awe-inspiring works were all engravings. His strength lay in the values that came from the hatching and cross-hatching present in that medium and it defines his style. Find what you think defines your style. Is it your bold pencil work? Or maybe you’re a prolific oil painter?

Once you’ve figured out where your strengths lie, it’s time to present a variety of work within that scope. Do you have color variations that might appeal to the eyes of the jury? Do you have any motifs that make guest appearances in some of your pieces that you think might be beneficial? Think about how to present any amount of variety within the pieces you choose to submit for the Open Art Competition. Remember that the jury might have a wide breadth of their own preferences and opinions and think about how you might want to appeal to your audience.

Considering your audience is an important part of making any art, but for a competition when an unbiased jury is judging your work it can often get difficult. Don’t forget to choose pieces that you feel a personal connection with as well, as the depth of emotion with your piece often shows more than you’d think.

That brings us to our conclusion: having looked at all the different elements that go into choosing a piece for a competition such as the subject matter, the medium, and the audience who will be looking at it, hopefully, will help with the selection process you’ll be faced with. We hope this blog clarifies your thoughts on what to submit for TERAVARNA’s upcoming Open Art Competition.

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