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News: A Show to Submit Your Work That You Should look at!

Asher Kelman

OPF Owner/Editor-in-Chief
Meanwhile we have a few names for the contest and I'll send anyone who wishes name to get the price reduced from $25 to $10 for the first entry then each following entry is $10. Make sure you give me your name if you expect to get an OPF discount. We have no financial or other connection with the contest or the exhibition and I have never met the curator, LOL!

Remember, to get your website ready too as when you win and your work comes to be sold, they might want to buy something else too, if you are very fortunate. You set the price for your work.

Asher
 

Bobby Deal

New member
Meanwhile we have a few names for the contest and I'll send anyone who wishes name to get the price reduced from $25 to $10 for the first entry then each following entry is $10. Make sure you give me your name if you expect to get an OPF discount. We have no financial or other connection with the contest or the exhibition and I have never met the curator, LOL!

Remember, to get your website ready too as when you win and your work comes to be sold, they might want to buy something else too, if you are very fortunate. You set the price for your work.

Asher
Did you enter Asher?
As I stated I have had a less then stellar experience with this group in the past but it was sometime back, I am interested to know if they have altered their tactics from the first show.
 

George Holroyd

New member
So, how then should an aspiring ' artist ' proceed to get his/her work to be brought to the attention of a bigger audience; and hopefully get some sales of his/her work going.

This is presuming that someone needs their work to be displayed, recognized and sold.

I am very interested to learn of the options available besides the ones mentioned in this thread.

Regards.
Here is one example of an opportunity that does not cost the artist to enter. SFR, a french company is sponsoring a number of competitions to coincide with Paris Photo this year. I am entered in two of the three photo contests and have a profile page and portfolios on the site (NSFW). One contest is for a group show at Polka Gallery in Paris and the other is a smaller show (of four finalists) at the Grand Palais during Paris Photo.

http://sfrjeunestalents.fr/photo
 

George Holroyd

New member
Did you enter Asher?
As I stated I have had a less then stellar experience with this group in the past but it was sometime back, I am interested to know if they have altered their tactics from the first show.
Bobby, thanks for posting your experience. I mentioned it to someone offline earlier and think it is worthwhile mentioning here. Earlier this year I entered three images into a show back in the US and had one selected by the juror, Todd Hido. I had a 12x18 inch Lambda print made and matted and shipped from a printer I've used in the past to the gallery in Philadelphia. I couldnt get the printer to add a return label or ship the print in reusable material. After the show, artists were sent a link to a web page to provide payment for return shipping. Lo and behold, the web page wouldn't take a foreign address. I tried to get in touch with the (small) gallery to no avail. Long story short, I spent a couple of hundred bucks on that print and I'll never see it again.
 

fahim mohammed

Well-known member
George, if you have found ' a french company ' or a ' Polka Gallery in Paris ' and you are happy with them, then the problem has been solved. I am happy for you.

What then was the reason for your original post and all the subsequent discussion? Was it merely to
make the readers aware that some ( or all ) of these pay-to-play outfits are unreliable; or even worse dishonest and/or not worth participating in? In any marketplace there usually are unfortunate instances of scams. Should that negate their value or the service they are supposed to render?

If that was your intention, then it would have been appropriate to state it at the start and would have made me, at least, understand the nature of your OP.

I have had issues with Paypal. But I still use them. They provide a service that I find useful, and generally all of my transactions have gone smoothly.

Similarly, I do a lot of business with Amazon. They do not ship many items to my address. Return and
refund hassles etc. But they state it clearly in their policy. I accept that; and have found alternate solution to this issue. I believe it is the buyer or sellers responsibility to ascertain the conditions of sale/purchase and return policies and terms. Ignorance of such is not a case for assigning blame to the party concerned.

I would have refrained from naming the curator in the incidence stated. Because that presents only one side of the equation, however accurate. And could be misconstrued by others.

I am sure all of us here at OPF want to help you and others as much as possible and within our province of individual expertise.

I wish you all success in your career.

Regards.

Here is one example of an opportunity that does not cost the artist to enter. SFR, a french company is sponsoring a number of competitions to coincide with Paris Photo this year. I am entered in two of the three photo contests and have a profile page and portfolios on the site (NSFW). One contest is for a group show at Polka Gallery in Paris and the other is a smaller show (of four finalists) at the Grand Palais during Paris Photo.

http://sfrjeunestalents.fr/photo
Bobby, thanks for posting your experience. I mentioned it to someone offline earlier and think it is worthwhile mentioning here. Earlier this year I entered three images into a show back in the US and had one selected by the juror, Todd Hido. I had a 12x18 inch Lambda print made and matted and shipped from a printer I've used in the past to the gallery in Philadelphia. I couldnt get the printer to add a return label or ship the print in reusable material. After the show, artists were sent a link to a web page to provide payment for return shipping. Lo and behold, the web page wouldn't take a foreign address. I tried to get in touch with the (small) gallery to no avail. Long story short, I spent a couple of hundred bucks on that print and I'll never see it again.
 

George Holroyd

New member
My post was directed at those members who may be considering this and other pay-to-play competitions. As you and Asher both have previously written that you do not have anything to submit, I assumed that meant that you do not intend to enter. Why then, are you concerned one way or the other?
 

fahim mohammed

Well-known member
2 very simple reasons:

1. Being informed. Being aware of what is out there.

2. Not interested now. But down the road maybe I can become an ' artist ' too.. back home; With the right marketing avenues promoting my ' art '. Or go into the pay-to play business myself;
open a gallery for local artists.

Regards.



My post was directed at those members who may be considering this and other pay-to-play competitions. As you and Asher both have previously written that you do not have anything to submit, I assumed that meant that you do not intend to enter. Why then, are you concerned one way or the other?
 

George Holroyd

New member
Ok, knock yourselves out, folks. Everyone here is an adult and capable of deciding for themselves whether or not this competition is legitimate and indeed, worth the expense. Some of us have had negative experiences with these types of events in the past and have expressed our concerns for the benefit of others who might be considering participation. Obviously, that doesn't wash with the tenor of this thread and the promotion of this particular competition by the owner of the forum. Best of luck to those who enter.
 

fahim mohammed

Well-known member
George, I understand and do sympathize that you have had negative experience(s) with this/these type/s of event(s). That it happens is inexcusable, but scams happen everywhere. However, not all people and not all outfits are dishonest. It bears repeating..' Buyer Beware '.

"We have no financial or other connection with the contest or the exhibition and I have never met the curator, LOL!". Asher has clearly stated this. And I categorically believe him when he says this. The ' promotion ' if any is done only for the benefit of interested OPF members.

It might be presumptuous of me, but I believe that those who participated in this thread did so with a view to assist you. Be it Asher, Jerome, Mark or myself. We did this in all sincerity.

Best regards.



Ok, knock yourselves out, folks. Everyone here is an adult and capable of deciding for themselves whether or not this competition is legitimate and indeed, worth the expense. Some of us have had negative experiences with these types of events in the past and have expressed our concerns for the benefit of others who might be considering participation. Obviously, that doesn't wash with the tenor of this thread and the promotion of this particular competition by the owner of the forum. Best of luck to those who enter.
 

George Holroyd

New member
George, I understand and do sympathize that you have had negative experience(s) with this/these type/s of event(s). That it happens is inexcusable, but scams happen everywhere. However, not all people and not all outfits are dishonest. It bears repeating..' Buyer Beware '.

"We have no financial or other connection with the contest or the exhibition and I have never met the curator, LOL!". Asher has clearly stated this. And I categorically believe him when he says this. And for you to state " ..the promotion of this particular competition by the owner of the forum " is unfair and unfounded.

It might be presumptuous of me, but I believe that those who participated in this thread did so with a view to assist you. Be it Asher, Jerome, Mark or myself. We did this in all sincerity.

Best regards.
Asher created a "connection with the contest" when he promoted it here on OPF. I'm fairly confident that Asher's heart is in the right place, but the fact remains that an association has been made. So, I don't think my previous comment was unfounded.
 

fahim mohammed

Well-known member
" ... SFR, a french company is sponsoring a number of competitions to coincide with Paris Photo this year. I am entered in two of the three photo contests and have a profile page and portfolios on the site (NSFW). One contest is for a group show at Polka Gallery in Paris and the other is a smaller show (of four finalists) at the Grand Palais during Paris Photo..."

Should we then read into this that you have more than a ' promotional ' interest in this company?

p.s in the previous post I had edited to remove the sentence containg the words ' unfair and ' unfounded'. Unfortunately, you had already posted your response.
 

George Holroyd

New member
Key differences, as you seem to be missing them...

1. I don't own this forum
2. I've put my art "where my mouth is". That is to say, I have entered my work in the competitions that I mentioned and that you chose to highlight.
3. The two contests that I mentioned have no up-front, non-refundable entry fees associated with them.
 

fahim mohammed

Well-known member
My question was:

" Should we then read into this that you have more than a ' promotional ' interest in this company? "

The question remains unanswered. Nothing is for free. Contests, competitions and the like have financial liabilities. They have to be met. All ' companies ' need to generate cash or something else in kind to offset those costs.

By mentioning this ' company ' are you not ' promoting ' it? One has to wonder why a company would do something for ' free '. There has to be a payoff; one way or another.
 

George Holroyd

New member
How dare I offer an opinion that runs counter to the tone of the thread. Yes, this and all other pay-to-play competitions are well worth the expense. Gallery owners have to eat and since the business of running a gallery depends upon the proceeds generated from fleecing aspiring artists rather than selling art to collectors, we, as artists must each do our part to ensure the continued success of these contest mills. Give me a F'ing break.

I'm done here.
 

Bobby Deal

New member
George, with all due respect, I guess I am lost here and since I haven't been active here over the past 6 months I guess that is to be expected. I don't know you or your work but this thread makes it appearant that many here feel your work here is quite strong.

While I personally won't be entering this contest for the reasons I outlined in an earlier post I don't know that I buy the idea that all pay to play contests are a bad thing with no other purpose then to fleece aspiring artists and line the pockets of the curators. Many very legitimate competitions with long and storied histories have entry fees. Entry fees facilitate many aspects of a contest from creating prize pools to covering administrative fees, advertising and promotion of competition and resulting show, printing catalogs, building web spaces, providing online storage for the entries and selected images for online galleries and on and on. No endeavor is without overhead. Unless the competition is tied to a 501c then one has to ask why should a business which has a interst in assiting emerging artists not be not only allowed but expected to look to hopefully profit from the undertaking of administering a competition? I have no qualms with a business doing business if said business is providing legitimate opportunities to present the emerging artist to an audience that holds potential benifits to the artist.

My concern with this particular event was the method with which they conducted the sales of the books to the artist rather then treating it as a catalog to be presented to a client base. It was clear to me that anyone who was willing to pay the publishing costs could be included in the book or shall we say catalog. This in its self is not an uncommon practice. There are photo catalogs that agents place their clients work in every month. However those catalogs are subscribed to by art buyers, art directors and others who are potential clients for the artists featured, those catalogs are simply a way for the artist to have their work and abilities advertised.

What I have seen in this thread is that several people who believe in the quality of your work have suggested that they believed this might have been an opportunity for you to gain exposure at a nominal fee. If the competition has altered its practice from how it operated in year 1 ( a strong likelyhood of this exists thou is unconfirmed) then a cost of $10 per entry would not be what I would see as an excessive cost to enter. Alas in the end entry is your choice and yours alone but to become riled and angry with fans for suggesting something they felt held potential benefit to you is a bit like shooting yourself in the foot. A simple declining of the offer would have sufficed.

I do not believe Asher had any grand designs when suggestion the event or when negotiating the discount with the admin of the competition. In fact I am willing to bet the competition approached him and offered the discount to the membership and Asher simply saw the discount as a potential perk to the members here.

Anywise enter or not as you choose, I personally am not familiar with your work but would caution that becoming riled with supporters for trying to be supportive is a great way to loose their support.

Regards,
Bobby Deal
 

Asher Kelman

OPF Owner/Editor-in-Chief
Bobby,

Thanks for you effort and openness. I approached the organizer of the competition as I felt that some folks here would most likely get their work sold at the show sand had a fair chance of getting to the top. I asked for the discount as I felt that $25 was too much for the first picture , knowing the already stated limited budgets of OPF members I was especially interested in.

Actually, George, from the outset I had you in mind. I have no bonding, aspirations for friendships or advantage by doing this, just a wish to promote gifted photographers who are really making an effort to deliver their best notions in finished work.

I am actually trying to help you. It's that simple.

Put aside the idea of "fleecing". Use of such words poisons our discussion as it puts a blanket of negativity over our fire for your creative work. Look at plastic surgeons. They milk the vanities of women and then have a connection that brings the susceptible women back every year for updates on facial surgery. However, amongst that, they also rebuild the eyes, face and ears of folk torn in car accidents or burnt in fires.

We are not good or bad. We are not dangerous or safe. We are not certain of a fact or in 100% denial. Mostly we are mixtures of all of these. Resistance to seeing in many shades of grey can defeat us. We can be overwhelmed by the necessary grains of worthlessness content in great matters. I'd offer that overcoming this natural aversion to guile and dust, is an important aspect of understanding the worth of opportunities, gifts, friends and our own work.
 

George Holroyd

New member
Bobby, are we following the same thread? Let me assure you that I had no intention of making this discussion about me. My posts have been against the value-proposition of these competitions. I have used a single example from my personal experience to illustrate my reservations, as did you. I have also, in subsequent posts, made it clear that my purpose in posting has been to provide another point of view for folks who might be considering participation. There are a lot of non-members who lurk on this forum and while I'm sure the folks in San Diego will gladly take their money, I'm not so sure the pay-to-play dynamic is in the artist's best interest. Are you?
 

Jerome Marot

Well-known member
This discussion is getting ridiculous. It is 10$, not 1000. And the pictures chosen the previous years are good. See it for yourself.

Maybe I should send a few pictures myself, but I doubt I would make it in the 100 firsts.
 

Asher Kelman

OPF Owner/Editor-in-Chief
George,

I respect your disdain for "pay for play". There is, after all, some validity there. I have made my plea to just accept such bad with the good. So I want to be sure you understand that I will not press anyone on this further. What I have already written is more than enough, LOL!

Just this, if one submits, let me know, so you get the discount arranged.

Asher
 

Mark Hampton

New member
This discussion is getting ridiculous. It is 10$, not 1000. And the pictures chosen the previous years are good. See it for yourself.

Maybe I should send a few pictures myself, but I doubt I would make it in the 100 firsts.
don't please Jerome - there are a couple of yours I was going to send as mine !
 

George Holroyd

New member
This discussion is getting ridiculous. It is 10$, not 1000. And the pictures chosen the previous years are good. See it for yourself.

Maybe I should send a few pictures myself, but I doubt I would make it in the 100 firsts.
No, it is 10.00 USD plus printing, matting, framing, shipping, and insurance costs. As you pointed out, it is not 1,000.00 per piece, but it is a heck of a lot more than 10.00. In fact, the only way to justify, as in recoup, the cost of entering such a contest would be to sell the print with a sufficient mark-up to cover the cost of participating plus, an additional amount to cover the gallery commission. For a 12x18 inch print, doing a quick "back of the envelope" calculation, I estimate that a sale price of 500.00 USD would be required for me to come away with any money from participating and the net amount, in my case would not provide very much remuneration at all. Participation resulting in a sale is the best case scenario, obviously. More than likely, assuming my entry were selected, participation would result in my having gone to considerable expense for the right to add another group exhibit to my CV. Some of these "exhibition opportunities" receive thousands of entries. Let's face it, the odds of getting in are low, even with solid work. For those who are selected, the odds of participation resulting in a sale are arguably lower still, as there is not much motivation to encourage sales by the gallery since the source of income has shifted from the art buyer to the aspiring photographer.

Of course, there is the tantalizing possibility that a gallery owner or collector will fall in love with the artist's work and a career will be launched but it is hardly worth mentioning how low a probability that is of happening when time and time again, we are reminded that gallery owners and collectors expect artist relationships to develop over a period of years, not instantaneously. There is no lottery component to the making of an artist yet, these contests seem to present the possibility in the same way one might dangle a carrot to lure a rabbit into a trap.
 

Jerome Marot

Well-known member
Participation resulting in a sale is the best case scenario, obviously. More than likely, assuming my entry were selected, participation would result in my having gone to considerable expense for the right to add another group exhibit to my CV.
Let me check: from your web site, you participated in 3 group exhibits:

  • Onward Compé 2012, Project Basho, Philadelphia, PA, February 2012
  • Landscape: The eloquent Light, Black Box Gallery, Portland, OR, February 2012
  • Fashioning Photography, Darkroom Gallery, Essex Junction, VT, March 2011

Were those paying entries? If not, how did they find out about you?
 

George Holroyd

New member
Let me check: from your web site, you participated in 3 group exhibits:

  • Onward Compé 2012, Project Basho, Philadelphia, PA, February 2012
  • Landscape: The eloquent Light, Black Box Gallery, Portland, OR, February 2012
  • Fashioning Photography, Darkroom Gallery, Essex Junction, VT, March 2011

Were those paying entries? If not, how did they find out about you?
They were all pay-to-play events. If I recall correctly, the entry fees were around 35.00 for three entries, which seems to be fairly standard in the US for these types of events. Of the three group exhibits, I am only aware of the sale of one print, at the show in Portland.
 

Jerome Marot

Well-known member
They were all pay-to-play events. If I recall correctly, the entry fees were around 35.00 for three entries, which seems to be fairly standard in the US for these types of events. Of the three group exhibits, I am only aware of the sale of one print, at the show in Portland.
Thank you for the answer.
 

Asher Kelman

OPF Owner/Editor-in-Chief
Everyone who asked me, to date, has had $15 credited to their account in this contest. As this only requires jpg for submission, this is an easy contest to enter.

Good luck!

Asher
 
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