The first time I dealt with “fine art” here, I spoke about the importance of curatorship for any project. Today I would like to deal with a related theme, or rather, the next step: what to do with those projects that have been curated by you and were sent to some call, but which were not selected.
The situation is not pleasant at all. Any process of submitting an artistic project to any selection is a very laborious task, both from an intellectual and emotional point of view. There are always forms to fill out, documents to send, audio samples or videos to edit… It is exhausting and takes a lot of your time. When we finally get to the end of the process, and after gathering everything we have been asked to do and double-checking that all the links work and that the spelling is correct, there is a lot of relief involved.
I am not certain “relief” is the best word in this case. Perhaps “mission accomplished” best describes the feeling of triumphantly hitting the “send” button. But life goes on and there are always other tasks awaiting, So you go on minding your own business, until that moment arrives: suddenly, you realize that the next edition of that festival you submitted for months ago is about to happen, and the chances you will part of the lineup are, well, zero.
It is a difficult moment and it takes time to get over it. The good news is that the more time passes and the number of wins also increases, the more easily you see the small defeats as less important parts of the game. You also learn that the important thing is to keep playing the game.
Okay, so you have learned your lesson and you want to stay in the game. Good! This is where I can help you with a lesson I learned from customizing and recycling my clothes: no piece of clothing is useless. The half-forgotten piece in the back of your closet only needs repurposing. Believe me, it always works!
You know that dress that one day gave you so much joy? It can turn into a skirt and bring you even more happiness in the future! Same goes for that now-forgotten pair of pants that might turn into your favorite shorts next summer. T-shirts? They are a world in themselves! Cloth leftovers, sequins, embroidery, anything goes to make Tee look just like you.
In the same way, maybe that project that has not been accepted in a selection (yet), would become simply irresistible with a few small changes here and there. It all starts by re-reading your project again. As good as it might be, there will always be room for some change.
Perhaps the main objectives are not very clear and you can go into further details. Sometimes the problem is just the opposite: too many details. In this case, you need to better condense your ideas and get straight to the point. Another item that always deserves a review is the target audience: is it clear who your project is for? Updating your budget may also be a good idea. Are the costs the same? In the case of tours. extra attention with food and transportation.
As you can see, even without changing its main objectives or compromising its artistic integrity, the possibilities of adapting the same project to different calls are many, and the gain in terms of time is enormous. Upgrading both your wardrobe and your career can be easier (and faster) than you think.
Be seeing you!