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gallery-display Tips & Tricks

How To Get Your Photography Displayed At Galleries

By Michelle Bird on December 18th 2014

Each photographer has different goals set for his/her career behind the camera, but how would it feel to trade assignment work for the artist life? Throughout the span of your career, although you may shoot commercially, there’s a great chance that you’ve had a great deal of personal projects accumulating as well. Resource Magazine recently wrote up an article with 10 tips on getting gallery shows and here are some of my favorite tips to help get your photography displayed on the big white walls of a gallery.

Show Off Your Style In An Online Portfolio

If you don’t have an online portfolio yet, that would be a good place to start; it’s one of the best ways to get exposure with art galleries. Your online portfolio should only have your best work on it, with your style of photography easily seeping through. By having a clear message on your shooting style, you’re communicating with the viewer that you are serious about your craft, and art galleries will know if you’d be a good fit in any future show.

Keep a Portable Resume and Artist Statement Handy

Although your work might be online, it’s always a good idea to have a portable resume with you, whether it be a hard copy or on a memory stick; this is something you will present to gallery owners. Along with your resume, an artist statement is a must (an artist statement is a detailed, but brief summary of your work). Sometimes gallery owners won’t have time to look at your portfolio/resume, but will definitely read through your artist statement. That might make a difference on whether you get the gig or not.

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Photo: Anna

Get Your Photos Judged

One of the key elements in advancing your career and getting your photography on the plain view of gallery owners is through exposure. Applying for grants and joining photography contests are one of the easiest ways to get your work seen by high-ranking folks in the industry.

Find a Gallery That Matches Your Style

Whether you’re stopping by to introduce yourself, or sending a consideration email, make sure the gallery you reach out to matches your photography style. Do your research and save yourself some time.

Go To The Gallery and Network

Once you have found a gallery that you think would be a good fit, go to their shows and network. Networking is important in the life of a photographer. Who knows, you could end up meeting the gallery owner!

[REWIND: Good Is The New Average, So Be Great For A Chance | Motivation From Scott Robert Lim]

Keep a Common Theme

As you submit your work for consideration, make sure you keep a consistent theme throughout your photos, and that it also coincides with your artist statement. Don’t just throw in a bad picture just because it fits, make sure you’re presenting only your best work, and keep it organized.

Remember that persistence is important. It is a quality that will set you apart in a sea of talented photographers. Don’t give up just because a gallery or two said no. There are thousands of people out there submitting and doing the same thing, but by being persistent and determined, you will be able to reach a higher ground.

[via] Resource Mag Online

Michelle Bird is a Southern California based freelance photographer and writer, with a strong focus on music, editorial and portrait photography. She is the founder and creative force behind the music+culture online blog Black Vinyl Magazine, and can often be found in the photo-pit shooting the latest concerts in town. She has a strong passion for art, exploring, vintage finds and most of all animals. Connect with her through Email,
Instagram , or Facebook

Q&A Discussions

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  1. MARTIN MIANO

    Great article Michelle

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  2. Scott Pacaldo

    love this article! thank you for the tips, Michelle! :)

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