How to Enter an Exhibition

By Molly Murrah - Feb 17, 2023

As a past digital curator and current catalog designer for NWWS, I have downloaded images of exhibition entries for years. It’s exciting and fun to see the entries as they come in – so many beautiful and creative paintings, some of which take my breath away. It’s a testament to the amazing talent that exists within our membership and the world of watermedia at large.

Many years of NWWS experience hosting exhibitions have gone into creating our online entry process. We have put much effort into writing clear, understandable instructions in our prospectuses and online entry forms. We are proud of our entry process, and this new website makes it easier than ever.

For a number of reasons, however, when using any online system, glitches can occur. In addition, once your NWWS entries have been submitted, most often changes have to be made manually by our volunteers – the digital curator, show chair(s), exhibition database manager, catalog designer, label and name tag preparer… all are involved.

Why am I telling you this? I thought it would be helpful to know that when entries are submitted incorrectly – something on the form is left out or misspelled, dimensions are incorrectly stated, images are not formatted properly nor uploaded correctly, etc. – these exhibition volunteers will need to become involved. This not only takes everyone’s time, more importantly, it opens the door for further mistakes.

Paintings by: Kate Aubrey, Karen Knutson, Sandy Haight and Charles Rouse

With all this in mind, here are a few things we’d like you to consider when entering an NWWS exhibition:

Save your login information for future use.

Make sure you can access the entry form before entering. This will alert you to website issues before you enter.

Update your website profile.

Read the prospectus carefully! Every word is important, and no two prospectuses are the same.

Take your time with the online entry form; pay attention to all instructions.

Fill in all fields on the entry form, following the guidelines provided.

Check for spelling errors.

Input your painting’s image dimensions, NOT framed dimensions, and put them in the correct form fields.

Be sure to upload the correct image(s).

Upload images in the file format and resolution required (.jpg format, minimum of 1600 pixels on the longest side). 

Crop image(s) to exactly what will display if an entry is accepted (no visible mats or frames).

Make sure your images are right side up and read correctly.

Double check all information before you click SUBMIT. 

Finally, please do not wait until the last minute. If you run into a problem and need our help, and a number of you do this at the last minute, this adds stress to the process for everyone involved.

I hope this has been helpful and gives you an understanding of our exhibition entry process. Unlike many other art organizations, we give personal attention to you, our entrants, and we want your entry experience to be stress-free. NWWS hosts very professional exhibitions and we appreciate your cooperation in helping us achieve this goal. 

Thank you!