HUMILITY — Leave the ego behind. When I don’t get the award (or with some shows don’t even get in) I try to remember it isn’t actually a reflection of the value of my work. There are a LOT of great artists out there! The more I know and love, the easier it is to be happy when their work gets accepted or they win awards and I don’t.
STORY — What is your painting communicating? Think in terms of what is essential for that purpose — leave everything else out.
VALUE — Using the full range from dark to light usually makes your painting stand out better from a distance. Use darkest darks and lightest lights to lead the viewer’s eye where you want it to go.
PIZZAZ — You’ll be competing against 199 other paintings in this show. Consider the WOW factor… what will get a juror’s attention? Use a unique perspective.
DESIGN — Color can get attention — using creative instead of local (accurate) color or complimentary colors (opposites on the color wheel). Placing your subject to give you a variety of shape sizes usually works in your favor.
SURPRISE — Give your viewer a payoff for moving in for a closer look. It might be texture or anything not visible from the distance. When everything is not immediately apparent it causes the viewer to spend more time with your painting.
VARIETY — As a juror, I like to consider what makes a well rounded show. Actually, work that tends to be more like mine tends to get more scrutiny than work that I feel I couldn’t do. It’s easier to spot perceived flaws.
SERENDIPITY — Even I have no clue what is going to speak to me at the moment I jury. But if I already know and love your work and it’s recognizable, the reality is that it will have to be clearly superior to take an award. Don’t think that’s not possible! But if your painting doesn’t place, that may be the reason.