Legitimate competitions are a great way to get your work seen, and evaluated against others. Of course, there are scams out there, but a little due diligence will tell you which is which. This one is legitimate, and the implication that it's a scam is unfair.

Quote Originally Posted by semi-ambivalent View Post
I don't think anybody is disagreeing with you on this. It's also defending the status quo, which I think needs to change, and is changing. Gallery "needs" a CV? Fair enough. Let me see a CV of their successes in getting their clients exposure and sales. (Oh, wait, Just who is the client in this exchange? The guy whose photographs are on their walls 24/7? Or the customer who walks in on a lark and gets out his wallet?
If a gallery is interested, you'll need to do your research. You need to talk to the other artists they represent, and find out how well the gallery is doing for them.

Quote Originally Posted by semi-ambivalent View Post
This is not that level of a gallery, is it. I'm sure there's some stars out there but they are vastly outnumbered by galleries that know very little about marketing. Galleries who are very hesitant to really push an unknown artist, perhaps not even educated enough about Art's idiot bastard stepchild, Photography.
I think you're confusing exhibiting with representation. A competition is not for having the gallery market your work. It's for you to market your work by being seen in a venue you'd have no access to otherwise. A rep/agent markets your work. This is one way to get your work seen by reps.

Quote Originally Posted by semi-ambivalent View Post
I would suggest it was your website that made the sale, not the gallery. .
Without hanging at the gallery, the couple would never have seen my website.

Quote Originally Posted by semi-ambivalent View Post
Congratulations. Really.
Thank you. Looks good on my CV.

Quote Originally Posted by semi-ambivalent View Post
I'm not suggesting anything else. I'm saying the old ways need to die. If galleries want "relationships" then they need to show the artist a real CV too. AND, they need to alter the fee schedule until such time they can prove to the artist that they can deliver the clients so the work can deliver the sales. If the work sucks they need to say so and turn the artist out, and not make up some excuse to themselves to hang it anyway because the electric bill is coming due.
Like I said, you have to research the gallery, too. When the work sucks, they let you know by not taking you on. Legitimate galleries/competitions won't accept crappy work to pay the electric bill. If it doesn't sell, they won't get any money.

Quote Originally Posted by semi-ambivalent View Post
The gallery mule method is the only way to do this? To gain confidence? To move on? That's ridiculous. Twelve years ago I sold two 16x20s for $130.00 each at a company art show in my employer's lunch room. Those checks gave me more confidence than any gallery up to that time. There's lots of roads twixt here and there.
There are a number of ways to make a few bucks from your work. Galleries, art festivals, flea markets, lunch rooms, sales to friends.... My point was that, at some point, you'll need to see how your work stacks up against others work. One way to do it is by entering competitions. $40 (or so)in entry fees isn't a lot of money to invest in yourself. If accepted, add the cost of shipping (most likely both ways). Framing costs are negligible. Either the work sells, or you get your framed piece back, and can use it again. One way to keep shipping costs down is by determining the size of your entry by the distance it needs to be shipped. For me, if the competition is far away, I enter smaller pieces. Closer and I enter larger ones.