While you may have hundreds of photos that you are ready to show off to the world, actually getting your work into a legit gallery is far from easy. There are thousands of photographers trying for the same thing, with only a limited number of galleries willing to feature these works. Traversing the world of photography galleries may be daunting but there are certain things you can do to increase your chance of success in launching into the industry as an exhibition-featured artist.
Here are some helpful tips to get you started:
Build relationships. This is incredibly important for any field, because it is often from networking that we are able to secure a job. If you have built solid relationships with other people in the industry and they can vouch for your character/talent, you will have a much better bet at getting into a gallery. You should try to attend gallery events to meet other art-lovers and get your name out there. Having connections will go a long, long way in any creative industry.
Create a strong social media presence. We can not deny that we live in the age of the internet, meaning your online presence is likely the first place people will look to get a feel for your work. You should make sure that all of your social media platforms, be it Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook, are nicely laid out and feature your best work. Posting frequently shows you are dedicated and want the world to see your work.
Have a printed portfolio ready to go. Your work should not live solely in the “cloud”. You should keep a collection of tangible prints to showcase your work to anyone who may want to see it. Having this ready to go will accelerate the process and prove that you are serious about getting your work out there for people to see.
Keep a resume on you. Whether it is an easily accessible online resume or a printed copy, you never know when the opportunity will arise to show people what you have to offer. If you always have a way of accessing your history in the industry, you won’t ever have to forgo an opportunity because you are unprepared.
Hone your style. There is nothing that makes an artist stand out more than having a unique, distinct creative vision. You should work to cement an artistic brand that captures who you are as a photographer, and try to stick with this. Of course, having a diverse collection of work is invaluable and you should never limited yourself, but if you can choose a style and really perfect it, you will have a better chance of being recognized for a gallery showing.
Do your research. Not every gallery is looking for the same style or subject matter. You should look into galleries that showcase photos you feel your work would fit nicely with. If you’ve gotten to know these locations a little better, you will have an easier time navigating your options and your attention to detail will be appreciated.
Share everywhere. The fasted way into a gallery is recognition. You should try to share your work as far and as wide as you can. Exposure is key to making a name for yourself and securing a spot as a featured artist.
Did we miss anything? Let us know any additional tips that you think can help you become gallery ready in the comments!