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How to avoid the classic "starving artist" syndrome?

Follow the money.

But keep in mind that not all art funding is created equal. Requirements, submission rules -- and, of course, the money -- will vary with each organization.

Grants can be targeted to college students to help pay for their education. Some may be geared exclusively for women artists or to a specific ethnic community or age group. One in particular, Creative Capital, only funds artists for work that they deem "represents groundbreaking projects”.

Rule of thumb? "If you don't qualify, don't apply." 

Once you find the perfect fit, funding for your work all begins with writing the grant proposal. Some artists are both skilled in writing and painting, while some are not. If you fit in the latter category, find someone who is skilled in the art of writing proposals. Make it short and to the point, and keep the usual art jargon to a minimum.

It goes without saying that you should also enclose slides or photographs of your best work, and focus their attention on work samples that relate to your project or proposal.

Above all, enthuse your audience with the same excitment that your feel for your work. Like any advertising campaign, you're selling yourself and your work to a demographic. Often, grant committee members are made up of professional artists, well-heeled donors, and civic community leaders.

Sell your idea to everyone (like you were explaining your work to your Aunt Bessie) and you'll have your best shot at gaining a bit of fame and fortune for your next art project.

More about art grants and funding around the Web:

Around the Web, discover opportunities for modern artists with facts and expert guides to grants, funding, residencies, and more information about what makes the art world go 'round ...

also see in Painting -> Painting Awards | Art Organizations


Grant - Knowledge Base - Grant-seeking 101, with a treasure of information on where to find them, how to write a proposal, related resources, and other insider tips and tricks.

Arts and Culture Grants - Foundations and organizations granting funds to individuals and organizations throughout the U.S. and Canada.

Alliance of Artists Communities - Resources - Find guides to residencies in the US, tips for applying to the NEA, with related information on buying and leasing space and artist's studio safety.

Arts and Culture Grants - Foundations and organizations granting funds to individuals and organizations throughout the U.S. and Canada.

Arts Council UK - Grants for the Arts - A complete how-to including a brief video, information on the application process, feedback for unsuccessful candidates, as well as case studies on those who have worked successfully to have funds awarded for their art project. - Grants - On Australian awards, grants, and other funding courtesy of the National Association of Visual Arts with application and information forms for the Marketing Grant for NSW Artists; the Freedman Foundation Travelling Scholarship for Emerging Artists; the Australian Visual Artists' Benevolent Fund; and The Windmill Trust Scholarship for NSW Regional Artists; in downloadable PDF format.


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