Quote Originally Posted by reellis67 View Post
I am told that the thing to do if you are interested in this type of event is to keep track of the judges who like the style of work that you do and then only submit work to their shows. It takes time to learn who likes what type of work, but I am told that's the best way to get your work seen without spending overly large amounts of money on entry fees for shows that you have little chance of getting in to. The cost to submit three prints to any given event is not large, in and of itself, but if you add up how many submissions you make each year it can get fairly impressive. I expect, though, that everyone will have a slightly different take on this...
Maybe it's because I haven't done a lot show submissions, although I am also involved in putting on several general art shows each year, but I'm not convinced that advice is totally reliable. Not to say it's bad, but I have occasionally seen what appeared to be a judge giving short shrift to work similar to his own. Maybe he wanted to avoid accusations of bias, maybe to distance the competition -- who knows?! :rolleyes: I suppose if you can get the opportunity to see previous shows the person has judged, the idea could work, but in my experience many groups try not to repeat judges very often so tracking previous results could be difficult. For my club's open juried art
shows we try not to repeat a judge for at least six or seven years. And since we normally have two judges, when we do repeat, we try to pair them with a different person. We hope that's a way to keep things mixed up a bit.

I believe I've seen some indication that judges who are educators -- say art school professors -- may tend to be a bit more diverse in their selections and less anchored to one style. I also like shows juried by more than one person, I think that provides more balance.

The idea of shooting "for the contest" is scary. We have a few events around here that have themes of a sort. Sometimes they are just looking for something within a geographic region. That I can see, but as I play it, if I don't have anything that fits the requirement, I pass. In some cases, if a theme intersected with some of my favorite(?) subjects, I might make a special effort to come up with shots if I had time. So far I go with my own interests and self-amusement which is probably one reason my work isn't being snapped off the walls -- I can understand a B&W of the twisted rusty remains of a 19th C industrial ruin doesn't work in to too many suburban living rooms.