Let Us Guide You!
Creating amazing work is just one half of the puzzle, getting people to know about your work and what you can offer is the other. In this section, the samples and tips listed – from CVs to Artist Statements, how to write a marketing blurb to grant proposal – may be a helpful place to start.
Curriculum Vitae is Latin for “the course of my life”, and hence, should detail your most notable work experience, skills and achievements. As attention spans are short, your CV is best kept within two A4 pages and written simply and clearly. A CV is not the same as an Artist Bio or Artist Statement, which will be detailed separately.
When you write your CV, do include the following points:
- Personal information like your full name, citizenship, home address, mobile number, email address and other online presence like LinkedIn;
- Short profile of three sentences summarising the uniqueness of you – who you are, what you love to do, your beliefs, your proudest accomplishment;
- Employment history by year (latest project or job on top), the time you spent doing that project or job (e.g.March 2019 – August 2019 and possibly some highlights from that job);
- Education qualifications by year (latest on top) and highlight any awards you may have received;
- Skills listings e.g. good with Powerpoint, speak fluent Polish, can reach a High C note easily;
- References, such as past hirers or mentors who are willing to be contacted by your potential hirers.
Here are a few CV samples from resume.io, myPerfectresume, Hamilton Arts Council, and The Guardian as starting points to think about your own CV creation.
An Artist Bio is a one-paragraph summary of your career written in the third person that may be included inside publicity collateral like a programme booklet or website.
If this is your first time writing an Artist Bio, check out Artwork Archive, Society6 and Agora Gallery on how to write succinctly.
Artist Statement / Personal Statement
An Artist Statement is a proclamation of what you believe in and is a clear communication to those experiencing your work to understand your intentions. If you are creating a new body of work, this is when you would want to have an accompanying Artist Statement. It should preferably be 150 – 200 words, or two paragraphs, in length.
WikiHow, Format and Agora Gallery has good tips to guide you through this deep-thinking process from structuring the statement from scratch to the finishing touches. Singapore visual arts veteran Michael Lee has some useful tips and examples to share with you too.
A Personal Statement is similar to an Artist Statement but written by a non-artist like an arts administrator. A Personal Statement is usually written for grant applications or scholarship applications.
Writing a Grant Application is always daunting. Singapore arts veteran Tay Tong has some useful tips to share here.
For more tips on how to do it right, explore Format, a website builder for creative works, and Artistsnetwork, a visual arts online community platform.
A Marketing Blurb is a short, punchy piece of writing that is akin to an elevator pitch for your artistic work. You may be asked to write this for promotional collateral like a programme booklet or website.
Western Arts Alliance has a piece on how to write the perfect marketing blurb. Thank you, Wesley K. Andrews!
A Press Release is a longer piece of writing that provides more details about an artistic work, usually a new piece of work. This would be handed to the media for potential coverage in print, broadcast or online platforms.
Writing an effective Press Release takes a lot of practice and years to master. If you are lucky, it may be easier to ask a PR professional friend to do this work for you. If not, here is a Press Release Guide as a starting point, with a helpful list of arts and lifestyle media you can share your Press Release with.
Every arts project requires you to spend some money, and may also bring you some income, e.g. ticket sales or sale of your artwork. Drawing up a proper Budget is an important step in planning before you embark on your project as it enables you to predict whether you will make money or lose money. It is also a must-have should you decide to seek funding from external sources.
To help you get started, we have prepared a Budget Guide for you to adapt.