72 x 60 cms (framed)



  1. Tracy

    I’m enjoying your writing so much, Judy. I appreciate the advice you offered about entering shows. I’ve stopped entering most juried shows, but I still try to enter a few each year. What are your criteria for deciding whether or not to enter?

    • Judy

      Hi Tracy, thanks for taking the time. Number one for me would be ease of submitting. If I was at home in Ireland, I would possibly enter more shows except that on top of the fee for entering, I would have to pay a handler to deliver and pick up the work. It all adds up and so I would have to weigh up my chances! In Dubai, it’s the same although the fees are usually cheaper or none at all.

      Secondly, I’d do the research – and check past catalogues and prize-winning entries – would my paintings be a good fit?

      Lastly, I might just take a leap of faith if I feel particularly motivated by something I’ve worked on:) In a past life, I used to be in recruitment and we would always say ‘you can’t do too many interviews’ It’s the same with art shows and exhibitions – if it’s easy enough (and not expensive) I’d say ‘ENTER!’. That will mean visiting more exhibitions, being around other artists and absorbing more art and experience almost by osmosis.

      So, there’s my tuppence worth Tracy – so many times I’ve had to pick myself up and brush myself down but I usually go on to leap again. Judy


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If you have been following my ramblings (aka blogs) you might remember that I had submitted my mixed media piece a few weeks ago for the Open Call for the Exhibition, PLAY.  I had promised to write about the outcome whether t was successful or not. Well, I’m delighted to say that my painting was accepted for this exhibition and I was ridiculously thrilled by the fact.

The genre of work that I submitted was a huge leap of faith for me compared to my recent paintings but it felt right and reminded me to breathe, smile and revel in the process without a thought for the end result and the result was my work FOREVER BLOWING BUBBLES.

I completed an intensive professional development programme for creatives in 2017 and I garnered some valuable information from the invited international expert tutors and curators involved. I kept this in the forefront of my mind when applying for inclusion in this important exhibition.

Below are some pointers that I hope that you will find useful.

Submitting to any event shouldn’t just be about handing in the work to a reception desk and hoping for the best.  As my old school teacher used to say, ‘Do your research and Read the question’

1.  Scrutinise the call for entry form.  There are normally a few clues when you read through the terms and conditions so read these carefully.  Have you visited the gallery/exhibition space before?   In previous shows was there a mixture of paintings, photographs, 3D and installations?  Do your research and it can tell you a lot about what you might expect.

2.  Check out the timeline, there are often several dates to take into consideration.  The entry deadline, sometimes the shortlist announcement, the delivery date for the committee viewing and the pickup date at the end of the exhibition.  It’s easier to miss one of these important dates than you think

3.   Check the photographs of your work are the correct dimensions and that they describe the submission as closely as possible. Photographing artwork for submission deserves a blog of its own and will be addressed at a later date.

  1.   Carefully take note of the measurement guidelines for your work and if they’ve asked for measurements with a frame – give just that.   An important consideration and often not addressed  – DOES SIZE MATTER?   Imagine the number of submissions for the Royal Hibernian Academy in Ireland or the Royal Academy in the UK.  It’s not just a case of will your work stand out but CAN IT BE SEEN FROM ACROSS THE ROOM when the committee views the entries.

5. Have you labelled the painting properly and filled out the entry form correctly? If you’re unsure, ask someone to check it over for you.  there is nothing worse than going to all the trouble and expense and then realising that you’ve left something important out.

6.  Finally, please remember that you want to make the committee’s job AS EASY AS POSSIBLE.   Give them the opportunity to accept your submission without having to question any of the side-line conditions – DON’T GIVE THEM ANY PROBLEMS.

The exhibition

It was a wonderful evening, a full house and it was an honour to be exhibiting alongside some of the top artists in the United Arab Emirates.  However, an artist’s work isn’t over at this stage either.  There should be no resting on laurels and lapping up the congratulations.   It’s important to bring along business cards with all your relevant details.  You have to be prepared for the press interest too.   Photos will be taken and so best bib and tucker on.  It’s also imperative that you can talk coherently and intelligently about your work.  This might sound obvious but practice anticipated answers before you present yourself on opening night, it’s important!   The motto has to be ‘BE PREPARED’

AFTERNOTE.    The Exhibition Play application was relatively straight forward.  Answering calls for some shows, however, can entail much more.    ‘Mind The Gap’ was another selected and curated group exhibition in 2017 and this show was a different story.  The exhibition ‘Mind The Gap’ deserves a blog all of its own later on.