10 Tips For Aspiring Fashion Models

Want to be a model, but don’t know how? Do you dream of being the next Gigi Hadid, gracing the cover of Vogue? A few tips for aspiring fashion models are listed right below. However please note that this advice is equally useful for new fashion models who have just entered the industry. So let’s start.     

Top 10 Tips for Aspiring Fashion Models

Modeling Agencies 

Every fashion model needs a modeling agency. The first step to getting signed by a modeling agency is getting seen by a modeling agency. Getting seen requires a very simple submission: snapshots of yourself. These snapshots are commonly referred to as ‘digitals’ in the industry (or occasionally ‘polaroids’.) Modeling agencies are looking for the most simple and natural photos possible so that they can see you for YOU. Submit snapshots of you wearing little to no makeup: a light sweep of foundation and mascara at the most. Do not style your hair (but do make sure it is clean), and include photos of your hair down, and also of your hair up, pulled away from your face. The background needs to be plain and not distracting (standing against a plain wall works best). Take the photos using natural light; a friend can easily play photographer for you. Your digitals should include the following photos: smiling (with teeth, without), non-smiling, up-close headshot(s), left and right side profiles, and a full-length shot (both facing the camera and turned away from camera). Your outfit should consist of a t-shirt (solid color) and jeans. Your submission to a modeling agency should NOT include the following: Selfies, Photoshopped photos, blurry/unclear/zoomed-out photos, etc. Don’t get a fake tan, don’t wear fake eyelashes, don’t do any crazy contouring with makeup (in an effort to ‘cheat’ and give the illusion of being makeup free and possessing killer cheekbones and a tiny nose naturally). Don’t overthink it: simple and natural really is the first impression modeling agencies are looking for.

Recommended reading: 10 Stunning Fashion Photography Portfolios for Inspiration

Do your research about the modeling agency you sign up with

Before submitting to every modeling agency on earth and seeing if anything sticks, do your research. Make a list. First, and most importantly, is this agency legit? Can their business be easily verified, and do they have any bad reviews? Is this modeling agency currently accepting models with your look and stats? What is the modeling agency’s submission process (specific guidelines vary by agency, but you should be able to find this info on their website)? Who are the agency’s past and present models? What are the modeling agency’s most recent campaigns? Are they working with established brands and companies? Do you WANT to have this agency represent you, meaning you will be representing them in turn? Once you find the modeling agencies that you feel confident to be a good fit for you, submit digitals to your top picks. After you submit your digitals if you receive a call to meet with an agency in- person, do even more research prior to the meeting. Brush up on big fashion designers, who the ‘it’ supermodels are at the moment, current events from the fashion/beauty/modeling world, etc. You don’t need to be a walking “fashion model encyclopedia” by any means- just be aware and informed.

Learn to embrace rejection

 Mentally prepare yourself for rejection- a lot of it. You MUST be able to handle having doors shut in your face without a second thought. Even the most stunning supermodels to ever walk the planet were told “NO.” In fact, they were told “NO” multiple times, many ways, by countless people. Rejection is part of the territory. The sooner you not only understand but accept that, the better off you will be. Don’t base your self-worth on appearance or anybody else’s approval of you. Start practicing now: challenge yourself to shrug off any and all criticism you receive this week. See if it was easy or difficult. The harder it was, the more you need to grow a tougher skin. Are you offended that you were just told to grow tougher skin? If so, that’s exactly the point! Start practicing the ability to let all criticism roll off your back! But don’t worry, everybody is capable of learning this skill with enough practice. A good mental mantra to keep in mind when it comes to rejection is: “Every ‘NO’ is just one ‘NO’ closer to a ‘YES.'” 

Make yourself constantly look better  

 Take care of your skin, hair, body, and health. Like it or not, modeling is an aesthetically-driven industry, and beauty/appearance is undeniably important. (That being said, you can still make it as a commercial model regardless of physical beauty or body type.) However, for fashion models, the height/weight standards are more rigid and inflexible than with any other genre in modeling. There’s not much you can do about genetics, but it IS up to you to make the most of the genetics you were given. You must adhere your own thorough beauty regimen. Many supermodels use the following habits as part of their beauty routine, including but not limited to the following: drinking water like a fish throughout the day to stay hydrated and keep skin supple, not smoking, keeping alcohol to a minimum or abstaining, exfoliating/washing/moisturizing face every morning and evening, wearing SPF, never going to sleep in their makeup, regular manicures and hair appointments, taking a multivitamin, working out 4-5 days per week, maintaining a strict diet / meal plan, among many more. Looking and feeling your best will only benefit you no matter how you look at it – professionally or personally. It is a win-win. But in this case, having your beauty habits nailed down is absolutely a career advantage for any aspiring fashion model. A model who takes care of her appearance is much more of an asset than a lazy one with poor hygiene and no motivation to look her best. 

If you do not fit the current fashion model requirements (height/weight), there are many other genres in the modeling industry that you can pursue instead. Please read this article on the types of modeling to learn which genres you may be a good fit for.

Practice posing and walking 

Study and understand posing. Practice runway walking. What separates a pretty model from another pretty model is going to be their posing ability and their walk. Modeling is an art. The supermodels you see in gorgeous magazine photos did not just sit in front of a camera and get lucky when the photographer took a photo of them. They worked WITH the photographer to create a masterpiece. Both equally skilled in their respective trade, a model will use her posing, facial expressions, and artistic intuition to help create the photographer’s vision. The photographer will use his knowledge of lighting, aperture, framing, etc to bring everything to life on his end. It is a choreographed dance, and you need to hone your skills the best way you can. Whether it’s binge-watching season upon season of America’s Next Top Model, scanning the pages of Vogue, watching YouTube tutorials, reading modeling books, or finding a favorite model to emulate just do your homework. Posing and walking on a runway is very awkward at first. Practice. Have a friend shoot photos of you to get comfortable with posing, both in front of a camera and another person. Or start smaller and put a camera on a tripod and practice by yourself until your confidence grows. If you can’t pose and don’t feel confident in front of a camera, it will be 20 times harder to get a great shot. Work on becoming the best model you can be!

Be safe 

As a fashion model, you’re vulnerable, especially when you’re starting up. So have your guard up and be safe. My most important tip for aspiring fashion models: Don’t fall for phony modeling schools (you DO NOT need to pay money to attend any sort of modeling school or training, period). You shouldn’t have to pay for any photos to get started. Your agency should be the one taking care of setting up test shoots. There are many other scams out there: modeling contests, unscrupulous “modeling agents” or “casting directors” or “photographers”, fake casting calls which promise thousands of dollars in compensation and a photo shoot in another country, etc. Have a good support system in place. The modeling industry can be an overwhelming place, and it can be easy to fall prey to many other dangers (party scene, eating disorders, etc). Keep your friends and family informed of what is happening in your career. They can be a sounding board if anything sounds fishy or unusual. They can drive you to a photo shoot and wait for you outside. They can keep you encouraged when you face rejection or a rough patch. Stay safe and have a support system!

Be Professional 

Be a professional through and through. Answer phone calls. Return voicemails and emails promptly. There is no excuse to be 30 minutes late to a meeting, casting call, photo shoot. If anything, you should always be 15 minutes EARLY. This takes planning and time management skills. Aspiring models make a big mistake when they adapt the mentality of: “Well, I’m pretty enough to be a model, so I will just skate by with my looks alone and minimal effort.” Many up-and-coming models of the past never worked another day in their life after their unprofessionalism, bad attitude, and reputation began to overshadow their beauty. Nobody wants to work with a diva. There are plenty of other beautiful girls in the world who WON’T be snotty or rude. When you book a job, you are representing both yourself and your agency. When you are on set, treat EVERYONE with respect. If your makeup artist was given a specific directive, which she followed, but you hate the way she did your makeup… well, that’s too bad. She did her job, so now do yours. Go produce some killer photos, regardless of your personal makeup preference, and without saying mean things about the makeup artist to others. Respect and courtesy will take you a LONG way in your modeling career! 

Commit to work

Modeling may seem easy and glamorous, but that is by no means the reality. It will take a lot of commitment on your part to make it as a successful fashion model. Are you prepared to maintain a diet, fitness, and beauty regimen, even when you are having a dry spell and not booking any work? Are you prepared to do a 12-hr photo shoot in freezing and windy conditions, while wearing wardrobe that offers no warmth, while still getting the shot and not complaining? Have you accepted that it may take years once signed to a modeling agency to garner success (if ever) while your agency develops you as a model? Are you willing to travel internationally on long trips, and be away from your significant other, family, friends, and the comforts of home for an extended period of time? Are you willing to work a completely unglamorous side-job when the bookings are slow? If your agency wants you to try a dramatic hairstyle change, are you flexible and open to it? This is not meant to scare you by any means – modeling CAN be fun, rewarding, exciting, and glamorous. Just make sure you are aware of the possibilities on both sides, good and bad, and you are ready to commit no matter what!

Build your social media following 

If you are an aspiring fashion model, it is likely that you are seeking modeling agency representation. As mentioned before, submit your digitals, practice posing and walking, develop a beauty regimen, etc while you wait for responses from modeling agencies. In the meantime, build up your social media following. It may actually help get you signed to an agency, believe it or not! This is a very new phenomenon. These days, modeling agencies will take a model’s online following into consideration when weighing whether to sign them or not. Advertisers use models all the time, but more and more so they want to use models who already have a built-in audience to promote to. A large social media following is not a requirement to be a fashion model, but it is a huge attribute. This trend does not show any signs of slowing at current. So jump on board as soon as you can. Be wise in your social media strategy and message. Know what you stand for, show your followers your authentic self, engage with them regularly, and post great photos! You can even take it a step further and start a blog, a YouTube channel, etc. Many non-intending influencers have turned into professionals models on account of their large following. 

Never let your pride down 

No matter what, at the end of the day you are still a valuable person with feelings, thoughts, and opinions. You are so much more than just a pretty face. Most fashion models accept the jobs they are booked by their agency, which is fine and quite standard. But if anything ever crosses the line or makes you feel uncomfortable, you need to learn to speak up and voice your opinion before it’s too late. While we just mentioned commitment being an important attribute, there is a fine line. You should never become SO dedicated to your career that it becomes more important than yourself and your own needs. What do you stand for? Make it known from the start, and stick to it unwaveringly. The less you worry about approval and acceptance, the better off you will be. Know when to put your foot down, and always have your own back. After all, if you don’t have your own back, who else will? 

We really hope these tips for aspiring fashion models would be useful to you! If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below. Best of luck on your modeling journey!

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How to write an artist statement

How to write an artist statement

An artist’s statement is as important as an artist’s work. It’s an important part of the application process for art schools, to seek fund for an art project, and to propose an exhibition in an art gallery. I review over 100 artist portfolio websites built on Pixpa every week so I can tell you what the best ones read like. I have found a few common traits that characterize the best artist statements. If you are struggling to write an artist statement, here are some tips you can use. 

Tips on how to write an artist statement

Ideally, an artist statement should be compelling. Like most other compelling texts, it should prompt readers to discover more about an artist. A good artist statement is composed of elements like persuasive copy, lucid readability, and inspiring perspective. I have listed below a few points that can help you to add these elements to your statement.  

 Introduce your art to viewers

An artist statement is a brief introduction to your art. Think of it as your substitute while you are not present to answer questions related to your art. Viewers often have questions about the art they are looking at. An effective artist statement answers those questions while you are not there.

One of the best ways to introduce your art to the viewers is to write about your inspiration behind it. It’s sort of laying the foundation before you begin to explain your art to the viewers. Your inspiration can be a daily phenomenon or a particular incident. Regardless, explain it in as simple words as you can. This accomplishes the major goal of connecting with the viewer. Not doing so leaves a viewer unconnected, especially if it’s an abstract art. Without it, your art is a splash of multitude colors on a canvas with nothing to make of it.

The next important thing to do when you write an artist statement is to explain your art in words. Your art is your perspective, and perceptions are easy to be misunderstood. To ensure that you and the viewer are on the same page add a line or two to explain your art. But, restrain from divulging all the details about your work.  Try to leave a little room for curiosity such that the viewer is bound to further inquire about your art.

Avoid spelling and grammatical mistakes

One of the important purposes that an artist statement serves is to draw the audience into an artwork and lead them to explore your art further. A sloppy artist statement puts a reader off, leaving them with less interest or no interest in art at all. Inconsistency in writing, typos, and spelling errors might turn a viewer away.

You can use tools like Grammarly to avoid petty grammatical mistakes. A well-punctuated, typos-free, artist statement is a joy to read.

Use active voice

Write your artist statement in active voice. It makes the tone more conversational; as if you are speaking to your viewer in person. It establishes an instant connection with the viewer. Use online editing tools like Hemingway app to ensure that your artist statement is written in active voice. 

Keep the artist statement as small as possible

Long biographies drain viewers, especially when they are out to see beautiful art. A lot of fancy words make a statement longer and difficult to comprehend. A verbose statement makes the work appear insecure. Some of the best artist statements that I have read are under 100 words. A rule of thumb that you can follow here is: The shorter the better. Consider this as the most important point in your lessons on how to write an artist statement.  

An effective artist statement is anywhere between 100 words to one- page-long. To bring your statement in this range cut down on technical details and fancy words that you have included in your artist statement. 

Get it proofread

A bad artist statement can be the final nail in the coffin to stop you from getting into your most admired art college or getting a grant. So it’s important that you get your statement proofread. It’s more important when you are applying for a grant/award or pitching a gallery for an exhibition. When you’re done writing your statement have it proofread from peers. I also advise you to have a stranger with no background in arts proofread your statement. Feedback from these people would help you to understand if you have been able to put your points across clearly.

Here’s a small tip: If you write artist statements frequently, consider creating a checklist on how to write an artist statement and put these four points down. It will make your writing process more efficient.

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Submit creative work to get published

31 Resource Websites for Creative Professionals [To Get More Exposure]

One of the best ways for creative professionals to get more exposure for their work is to get published in a magazine, blog, or just any art publication. But that’s surely hard to come by. These publications also serve as good resources to learn about their respective fields, which is why these places make a great spot to get one’s work published. We have listed some of the prominent resource websites where photographers, illustrators, designer, and painters can submit their work. Let’s see the websites where these creatives can get their work featured-

Websites for photographers to submit their work

Lens Culture

Lens Culture has an eminent panel of judges who regularly offer reviews for the photographs submitted to them. Being one of the most popular resource websites for photographers, Lens Culture is always inundated with submissions which make it difficult for the editors here to get back to everyone. Lens Culture, however, runs regular photo contests where you can receive a critique of your photographs. Some of the winners of Lens Culture have made it to the World Press Contest. To submit your photographs to Lens Culture, email at editors@lensculture.com

Fstoppers

If you’re a photographer, it’s highly unlikely that you haven’t heard of this humongous community of photographers, but it’s likely that you do not know that it’s a great platform to get your work seen. In short, Fstoppers, with its huge repository of photography resources (all coming from top photographers) and a channel to get exposure through one of its many featured groups, is an invaluable resource for photographers.

PetaPixel
PetaPixel is one of the most popular communities for photographers. This website frequently publishes camera reviews and other photography related equipment in addition to featuring work from brilliant photographers.  To submit your photographs to PetaPixel, contact them on their submissions page.

Feature Shoot

Feature Shoot is run and managed by Alison Zavos, a former photo editor, and a photography curator. She now manages Feature Shoot full time. With a brilliant team of art and photography curators, Feature Shoot curates some of the best photographic projects from around the world. The website features work from all genres of photography–fine art, still, portraits, lifestyle, travel and others.

To get your photographs featured on Feature Shoot,submit your work here

Photography Spark

Photography Spark is run by Dave. Though it doesn’t feature photographs, it offers photographers to share their expertise in marketing their talent. It serves as a great resource for photographers to get better at marketing their work. You can submit articles to Photography Spark via their contact us page.    

The Phoblographer

This website regularly publishes camera reviews and photography tips that make it ideal for beginners who are looking to improve their photography skills. Led by Chris Gampat, this website serves as an excellent resource for photographers and often features award -winning photographers. You can submit photographs via writing an email to editors@thephoblographer.com with the subject line “Photography Submission: (Your Name)”.
The Phoblographer requires photographers to follow certain guidelines while they submit photographs that you can read here.

F-Stop Magazine

Founded in 2003 by Christy Karpinski, F-stop is an online photography magazine.  The issues come out twice in a month and every issue is based on a unique theme. You can submit photographs to this magazine by sending an email to fstopmagazine@gmail.com.  However, submissions are accepted based on the theme the magazine plans to explore next. So remember to check the upcoming theme and guidelines before sending your photographs.

Outdoor Photographer 

Published eleven times a year, Outdoor Photographer is a popular resource for nature, sports, and travel photographers. This magazine takes the traditional approach for submissions, asking photographers to send photographic prints, or high-quality inkjet printouts via mail rather accepting digital files.

SÝN Magazine

Conceived in the year 2010 by three photographers, SYN Magazine features work of stylists and fashion photographers from around the world. You can submit photographs to this visual publication by sending an email to submissions@syn-mag.com and ensure that the photographs are not published elsewhere both online and print. While online submissions should be directed to jack@syn-mag.com.

Websites for illustrators and painters to submit their artwork

Creative Boom

Creative Boom is an online magazine and was founded in 2009 by Katy Cowan in 2009 out of her sheer love for art. This magazine covers every form of art including photography, illustration, design, craft among others. You can submit your photographs to Creative Boom by an email to submissions@creativeboom.com.

Read about their guidelines to submit your work here.

Boooooooom

Yes, that’s boom with eight ‘Os’. Boooooooom was started as a personal blog by Jeff Hamada– a Japanese and Canadian artist. From art to videos, this blog shares everything with its readers.  You can submit your art to this creative community via tweet or on their Facebook page. Unlike other art communities, this one also takes submissions for videos which you can submit here.

Colossal

Colossal is one of the prominent art blogs on the internet. Whether you’re a sculpture, painter, craftsman or a photographer, you submit your work to Colossal by writing to them at tips@thisiscolossal.com.  The team at Colossal requires you to send a brief email telling them about your project accompanied with pictures as large as 1000px wide or larger.

Read the guidelines to submit your artwork to colossal

It’s Nice That

This website features photography, art, illustration, design, and even work from multimedia artists. To publish your work on It’s Nice That, you can either share a link to your portfolio website or upload your files to WeTransfer and share the link to on the submissions page.

The Jealous Curator

Like Creative Boom, The Jealous Curator started as a personal project in the year 2009 that has now amassed a huge following of art lovers. The artwork on this blog is curated by Danielle Krysa – an ardent art lover, author, and a speaker. To submit your artwork to the Jealous Curator, simply send pictures of your artwork to her. You can email her at submissions@thejealouscurator.com   

iGNANT

iGNANT, founded in 2017, is an award-winning online art magazine. In addition to featuring inspirational and ingenious work in the fields of art, fashion, architecture, design, and photography from around the world, this publication produces valuable editorials. To get your work featured on this online magazine, submit your photographs on their submission page with a small description of your work.      

Artistic Moods
Artistic Moods is run by Sandra Apperloo– a Dutch art curator and blogger. She has been running this popular art blog since 2013.  Sculpture to art, Sandra covers everything on her blog. To submit your artwork to Artistic Moods, send an email to info@artisticmoods.com.   

Juxtapoz
Juxtapoz is an art & culture magazine. If there’s one thing that artists and art enthusiasts flock to for their regular dose of inspiration, it’s an art magazine. Juxtapoz has a massive following, given its great content. To get the eyeballs of its readers to your work, the magazine requires artists to contact the team by filling out this submissions page while the photographs need to be sent by file sharing apps like Dropbox, Wetransfer or any other.

Contemporary Art Daily   

Contemporary Art Daily shares news of exhibitions around the world. So If your work is being showcased at an exhibition make sure that it’s shared on Contemporary Art Daily. A point here worth noting is that Contemporary Art Daily only accepts requests for exhibitions-on-view. Send a PDF with exhibition details along with installation views and a checklist in case of a group exhibition to submissions@contemporaryartdaily.com.   

Brown Paper Bag

Brown Paper Bag is run by Sarah Barnes, she is a practicing Illustrator. She shares exceptional illustrations from talented artists on her blog. You can submit your work by tweeting to her at @brwnpaperbag or via an email to sara@brwnpaperbag.  

My Modern Met

From architecture to photography, My Modern Met is a one stop for every creative professional. It makes a great website for artists to keep abreast in their work and, of course, a place to find inspiration. To get your work featured on My Modern Met, send pictures  

Supersonic Art

Like many other art submission websites on this list, Supersonic Art started as a personal art blog in 2008 by Zach Tutor. Today, it boasts of over 6 million followers on Tumbler that makes it an impactful platform to have one’s art featured. To have your artwork featured on Supersonic Art, you can either fill out the submissions page or write an email to supersonic.com@gmail.com

Cross Connect Magazine
Cross Connect Magazine is devoted to discovering new talents in the field of arts. This community features paintings and illustration of emerging talents every day. You can approach the team at Cross Connect Magazine to feature your artwork by submitting links to your portfolio on their submissions page.   

Illustration Age
As the name implies, this website is dedicated to illustrations and features bold illustrations from established as well as emerging illustrators. Their weekly Comics Illustrator of the Week is  prominent feature that you should 

Artsy Shark 

Artsy Shark was founded by Carolyn Edlund and publishes individual portfolio articles on artists three times every week. Artists can apply to be featured during Call for Artist Submissions which happen several times per year.

 

Website for designers to submit their work

Design Milk
You would mainly see interior design and architecture here, but it also features fashion and art. You can submit your work to Design Milk by email sent to info@design-milk.com. In your email, attach a few photos of your design (or a download link), include a small description of your work, and a link to your website.

Design Boom
Design Boom features futuristic designs. A look at this online magazine nearly transports you to the future with its avant-garde grade designs. You can submit your designs to Design Boom via this registration form.  

Yatzar
Yatzar is one of the few websites that features industrial, fashion, interior designers and artists all at one place. It was founded in 2007 by Greek interior designer and now has become one of the top websites in the design industry. To submit your design to Yatzar, send an email to info@yatzar.com along with the photographs that are at least 2560px wide.  

The Design Blog

Founded by a Croatian graphic designer, The Design Blog has gradually become a curated website from a personal blog that was meant for inspiration. This website features work from ambitious emerging and young designers. To be featured on this blog, share your project details on this submission page.

Identity Designed (ID)

Founded by Irish graphic designer, David Airey, this website features graphic design projects that are mostly related to brand identity. If you’re a graphic designer and would like to share any stories related to your projects, you can send an email to hello@idenitydesigned.com with images that are not less than 1260px.

Design Clever

This photo blog was created by two British graphic designers– Jonathan Ring and Bethany Baker. Apart from sharing good designs, it regularly features design contests in collaboration with lifestyle brands. You can submit your designs via tweet @designclever_ or by an email at hello.designclever@gmail.com.

You can also submit your designs to Design Clever using this submission form.

Form Fifty-Five
Form Fifty-Five was founded in 2007 by a group of design aficionados with the aim to curate and share the best in the design community. To share your designs with them the team here, simply tweet a link to your designs.

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26 Artist Portfolio Websites That You Should Not Miss

Artists stay engrossed in their world of creating new art most of the time. Being in the zone of creating, experimenting, and working tirelessly is what makes them tick. However, it’s also important for them to reach out and connect to the outside world to showcase their paintings, find more work and earn a living.  A great artist portfolio website helps them to find new clients, get spotted by agencies, and build a fan following. An artist’s  portfolio website is not just a collection of artworks; it’s also a business and marketing tool and should be treated as such.  

This post lists 26 impressive websites that you can take inspiration from if you want to build an artist portfolio website. But before we delve into it, let’s find out what makes these impressive!     

Here are the three things that make an artist portfolio website stand out: 

  • A curated, well-presented, and updated portfolio: Curate and structure your artwork into galleries instead of laying out all of them at one place. Divide your artwork into small collections that best construct the narrative of your work and guide the visitors to view your portfolio as a storyline, instead of bits and pieces. Having a creative home page and an intuitive navigation for an artist portfolio website makes a good first impression.
  • Tell your story: In addition to showcasing work, an artist’s portfolio website builds the persona of the creator behind the works. Telling your site visitors about yourself, your inspiration, and taking them behind-the-scenes look to see how you work helps them connect with you as a person. Adding a blog to your portfolio website is a great way to tell your story – just make sure that you keep it updated and make it authentic and insightful.
  • Your CV and contact details: Tell your site visitors about your achievements, career highlights, and the clients you have worked so far. Add your contact details or your agent’s so that prospective people can reach out to you.

Now that you how to build an artist portfolio website, let’s look at a few websites that perfectly embrace the above three traits.   

     26 Artist Portfolio Websites That You Should Not Miss

  1.  Jane L. Troyer  Jane L Tylor- artist portfolio website
    Jane L Troyer is a Texas-based artist. Her paintings have been showcased across America at some of the most prominent art galleries including OK Harris Gallery in New York. Some of her paintings, notably, The Southwest and Autumn Heart, have added to the permanent collection of galleries like Longview Museum of Fine Arts, Longview, Taxes. Visit her artist portfolio website to see some exemplary watercolor and oil paintings. 
  2. Shruti Narayan   Shruti Narayan- Artist

Shruti Narayan is a New Delhi-based Painter. Apart from exploring the commercial art culture as a visualizer at Saatchi & Saatchi, she has worked with organizations like Indian Institute of Cerebral Palsy to develop software for differently abled children and adults. Currently, she is propagating her ideas of visual art as a teacher in New Delhi.  You can have a look at the full spectrum of her paintings on her artist portfolio website.

3. Sherry Griffin

Sherry Griffin-artist

Sherry Griffin is an American still life and fine art photographer. His artist portfolio website showcases a diverse collection of commercial photographs from his work as a product photographer while juxtaposed to his fine art photographs.

4. Alicia Haberman  Alicia Haberman- set designer

 Over a decade of experience in film & branded entertainment under her belt, Alicia  Haberman, is now a production designer at a leading marketing and music agency. She enjoys free-flowing illustration and graphic designing and has designed album covers for musicians like 50 Cents, Kanye, etc. Alicia’s artist portfolio website displays her diverse work in arts, right from illustrations to set design.

5. Pei-Wen Huang Shea 
Pei-wan Huang Shea is another set and costume designer on our list, who has an incredible portfolio website. Now an adjunct faculty at Brooklyn College, she is also director of FringeNYC, Fringe AL and Fresco. Her work includes set designs for films such as Sleepy Hollow, Alice In Wonderland, A Christmas Carol, Cinderella, and more. Visit her portfolio website to see her artistic view towards set design.

6. Matthew Park

Matthew Park- Sketch Artist

Matthew Park is a user experience designer, animation, and a sketch artist. He has worked extensively across digital and gaming industry. Visit his portfolio website to see some his work.  

7. Irene Lafferty

Irene Lafferty - Painter

Irene Lafferty is a UK-based painter. Her portfolio website showcases watercolor nude paintings, oil-on-board landscapes, and portraits. In over a decade, her paintings have exhibited across the UK. You can visit her portfolio website to see some incredible watercolor paintings.   

8. Cynthia Sanders

Cynthia Sanders- photographer

Cynthia Sanders is a Texas-based photographer. Her portfolio website has a collection of vivid photographs that show human figures superimposed on flowers, galloping horses in ranches, and other eclectic yet colorful pictures. Her monochromatic collection of photographs of Austin that bring out its identity. Visit her portfolio website to see her uncommon perspective on nature, people, and more.

9. Margy Duke

Margy Duke- Australian artist

Margy Duke is an Australian contemporary abstract artist. Her paintings have graced the display walls at a few exhibitions. She describes her work as a transcendental process, which is also reflected in her paintings. Visit her artist portfolio website to see some extraordinary oil paintings.

10. Eliza Walton Eliza Walton- Illustrator portfolio website

11. Danny Hurley Danny Hurley- photographer & designer

 

Danny Hurley is a Texas-based photographer and designer. In his thirty years of experience, he has photographed for territorial magazines such as Texas Business Magazine, Occupational Health Magazine, Methodist Magazine; and  TV channels such as ABC, MTV, among others. You can see his extensive work in design and photography on his artist portfolio website.

12. Linda Haag

Linda Haag-Painter

Linda Haag Carter is a Houston-based artist. She has spent more two than decades painting and promoting other artists’ work. Her artist portfolio website is a collection of beautiful watercolor and pastel crayons paintings. Her paintings have been showcased at solo as well as group exhibitions across America.  

13. Gayle Saunders

Gayle Saunders- Photographer

Gayle Saunders is a New York-based photographer. An array of photographs that he compares to smudge drawings and watercolor paintings grace his artist portfolio website. Gayle has been a recipient of three grants namely New York Foundation for the Arts Grants (NYFA) and two National Endowment for the Arts Grants (NEA), and his work has been exhibited worldwide. 

14. Lola Karpenka  

Lora Karpenka is a performing artist. She has learned yoga, meditation, dance, martial arts, among other. She has traveled to far off places like India to learn the art of yoga. See her portfolio website to know more about her.      

15. Hilary Boardley

Hilary Boardley-Photographer

Hilary Boardly is an English photographer. She describes her work as absurdist art, and her photographs show the world from a completely different perspective. Visit her artist portfolio website to know more about her and to see her inspiring photographs.  

17. John Catania

John Catania-painter
John Catania is a New York-based painter.  He has been pulling in admirers ever since his high school days. Awarded with numerous high school and university level endowments, he easily fits the definition of a prodigy. Additionally, his photographs have been exhibited in places as far as Senegal. You can visit his artist portfolio website to know more about him.

18. Elif Sezen Elifsezen- Sculptor

19. Victoria Owen 

Victoria Owen- Painter portfolio website

Victoria Owen is an Australian painter who has been painting since the raw age of three. Her artist portfolio website is a potpourri of abstract paintings and most of them are made from acrylic paints. You can visit her website to see some of her abstract paintings.    

20. Jeffrey Barge

Jeffrey Barge

Jeffrey Barge is a graphic designer. He’s credited with designing some memorable movie posters, such as Indiana Jones- Raider of the Lost Ark, Clint Eastwood’s The Outlaw, among others. Additionally, one can find logos and illustrated portraits on his artist portfolio website that show his passion for graphics.  Check out his portfolio website to see some amazing film and sports posters. 

21.  Carlos

Carlos- photographer

A veteran coast guard, a photographer, and a visual artist– this is Carlos! He describes himself as a photojournalist whose photographs have been published internationally. Carlos’ artist portfolio website showcases his collection of fashion & beauty photographs (taken for commercial purpose) along with the portraits taken during his jaunts across the world.  

22. Casey Wahl 

Casey Wahl is an American artisan and her website is unlike any other on this list of artist portfolio websites. She works with feathers of the birds, beads, turtle shells and more such natural items to make masks, pouches and other ornaments. See her website to find out other intriguing trinkets she creates. 

23. Aurel Rubbish

Aurel Rubbish- Paper cutting artistAurel Rubbish is a French paper cutting artist. His artist portfolio website is occupied with large intricate paper cut-outs that are baffling. If anything, his work is absolutely captivating. Take a look at some of his craft work and behold the visuals.

24. Emily Lang 

Emily Lang- Bookbinding artist and PainterEmily Lang is an English printmaker and book artist. Apart from being an artist, she has also been a teacher and taught printmaking and bookbinding at Edinburgh Contemporary Arts.  Check out her artist portfolio website to see some exquisite book covers and a few pencil sketches made by her.  

25. Hartley Brown

Hartley Brown - Painter Hartley Brown is an Independent painter, based out of Asheville, North Carolina. She has exhibited her artwork in solo and group exhibitions across America. You can see some delightful pieces of art that are mostly dominated by the Pink color on her artist portfolio website. 

26. Deborah Gregson

Deborah Gregson- PainterDeborah Gregson is a London-based painter. After working for 30 years, she is finally pursuing her passion for painting. Her artist portfolio website shows her still life and portraits paintings. She has exhibited at a few galleries including National Open Art Exhibition, Shropshire since starting in 2010.   

Want to build your artist portfolio website?  Get started here, absolutely free for 15 days!Build artist portfolio websites

The Essential Guide: How to Create A Photography Portfolio Website

Photography has exploded as a creative profession with more and more photographers turning pro and joining the ranks of the elite club. With a plethora of social media platforms, marketplaces and listing directories, each populated with thousands of photographers’ profiles, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to stand out in this clutter.

As a photographer, what are the platforms that you need to gain exposure? Should you spread yourself thin, or focus on one or two? How much time and energy you need to invest on the likes of Facebook, Instagram, 500px, Dribble etc.

If these are the questions that are occupying your mind, then there’s one essential piece of this puzzle that you are missing. One without which all your efforts might not pay off!

And that missing piece of the puzzle is – your own portfolio website running on your own custom domain name.

That’s the most important bit of online real-estate you need to own, build, and nurture for your long-term success and sustainability.

Let me explain why.

First, a portfolio website is important to build a brand

Who’s your favorite photographer? The reason I ask this question is that the chances you come to know about their work through their personal blog or website. Obviously, this didn’t happen to them overnight. Whether you see them as a role model or not, you definitely desire the success they boast today.

You need to be consistent while you build your brand.

Your portfolio website will be the only piece of online real estate that would be completely owned by you. Your online profiles on Facebook, Instagram, 500px and other online communities lack optimization.

You have no control over how your social profiles look, behave or feel. Every photographer has more or less similar photography accounts. This space is utterly cluttered and highly competitive. What’s worse? You can’t optimize your efforts without shelling out hard cash! 

facebook limits organic reach                                               Straight from the behemoth                                                                

While the scenario in popular directories like 500px is no different.

“Joining the directory is free, but come April, the site plans to start charging extra for services that promote users who shell out for member privileges. Some of the site’s features already cost extra money—their current membership upgrade fees range from $2 to $14 a month, ”

                                                 Source: Popular Photography

 You can’t invest all your energy into nurturing something that you don’t own. 

At best, you should treat your social media profiles as a funnel to get exposure but in the end, people interested in you and your work should be redirected to your own website. That’s where you close your business.

how to build a portfolio website

A portfolio website avoids choice paralysis: Increases your chances of being hired

I am sure you’re now wondering: What is choice paralysis?

Let me explain.

Theoretically, it might seem like a good idea to have unlimited choices, but practically it’s overwhelming. Choice paralysis is a psychological situation where a person voluntarily avoids decision for the fear of making a wrong choice when presented with several choices.

Directories and marketplaces do just what they are supposed to – present too much choice to the seeker. Availability of too many photographers’ profiles doesn’t make it any easier for visitors to make the choice, instead, it’s overwhelming for most of them. The chances of winning business by standing out in directories and marketplaces are next to nothing…unless, you opt for sponsored postings. And that can be very expensive.

A portfolio website, on the other hand, keeps a visitor glued to your photographs while dramatically increasing your chances of getting hired.

A portfolio website offers practically unlimited opportunities for business

Unlike directory portfolios (where you have no control over optimization), portfolio websites can be optimized for search engines.

Search engines can become a huge source of new business for you. But for that to happen, you need to rank well in the search engine results for the searches your prospective clients are doing. A portfolio website can be optimized to tap into this huge opportunity.

This, however, takes time. As the content on a portfolio website builds up, it begins to show up in search results.

While on the other hand, it’s tricky and very complicated to have a social media account show up outside the parent network. You don’t think so? Tell me how many times have you seen a Facebook photography page or an Instagram photography account show up on Google?

Here are two recommended reads, if you’re interested in learning how to optimize a portfolio website.

How to optimize images for search engines 

How to optimize a portfolio website for local searches

Now that we are on the same page, here’s how to build a great portfolio website

The two most common ways to build a portfolio website (or any website for that matter) are:

I will discuss the two approaches below, you can choose as per your convenience.

Building a portfolio website with WordPress

WordPress has become the world’s leading publishing platform and brings a ton of capabilities and features to the table. However, it does need a steep learning curve and depending on how web-coding-savvy you are, you would need to work with a web designer to give shape to your website. You can end up investing a lot of money and time in getting your WordPress website right, if you are not well-informed and make a wrong choice – and there are a tonne of choices that need to be made, like choosing a theme, hosting, domain name, web-designer and managing updates, security, SSL certificates etc. That’s a lot of work

The other way to build a portfolio website is to use a hosted website building platform.

If WordPress seems daunting to you, this is a great alternative. Most of these platforms are a paid service and need you to subscribe for a fixed monthly or annual charge. Apart from a domain name, there’s nothing else that you need to buy or manage. Hence, making these platforms easier to learn and manage and even more cost-effective than WordPress, given how much time you can save.

Building a portfolio website with hosted website building platforms

There are several website building platforms out there with different focus areas and target audiences. While some of these come with limited features, there are others that are extremely versatile and capable of building a top-notch website.

As a photographer, you’d be better off choosing a hosted platform that focuses specifically on creative professionals like photographers, artists, fashion models and more.  Once you have chosen a platform, do keep in mind these key elements while you build your portfolio website, to make the most out of it.

An effective portfolio website attracts visitors and turns them into paying clients. Here are the things you can do to make sure that happens:

Ensure that your portfolio website is fast enough  

The speed of your website is the single biggest factor in converting visitors to clients. A slow website will scare everyone away. No-one has the time to wait as heavy images load slowly.  Make sure that your website is blazing fast with optimized images.

Optimize your images not just for size, but also for Search engines. Add alt text (short for alternate text) to each image. Search engines like Google, Bing, and others can’t read images, and alt text helps them to read the information attached with a photograph. This increases the chances for photographs to show up in image searches.

Keep your website mobile optimized 

Tablets and smartphones are now used way more than desktops/laptops. Make sure your websites are mobile optimized and work great on all devices.

Build credibility of your website with social proof

Visitors on a portfolio website sometimes are apprehensive about hiring a photographer, especially when they have discovered them on the Internet. Unless they have been referred to them by a credible source. Testimonials from clients can eliminate those inhibitions. So do add a few testimonials on your website.  

Provide clear contact details

Mention your contact information clearly and make sure you are reachable on the contact number you provide. You don’t want to lose out on potential business.

Enable social media sharing

Use social media sharing widgets and tools on your website to enable users to easily share your work. This is free exposure that you don’t want to miss out on.

Keep it fresh

Last but not the least, make sure that you do update your website frequently. Change your site design, showcase new work, and tell fresh stories. 

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5 Free E-Books To Improve Photography Skills

High-quality digital cameras are now in widespread use and most people can get into photography inexpensively. Still, photography is a difficult skill to learn on your own. It can take years of practice and costly training for people to learn photography. Not many people have that much time or money to spare for what is probably only a hobby. A quick and easy way to improve photography skills is to use e-books. Fortunately, there are plenty of free e-books available on the internet. Here some of the best e-books available at no cost.

 

The Professional Portrait Photographers Collective Vol. 1

The book features in-depth interviews with ten professional photographers. It aims to teach readers by analyzing the careers and experiences of these photographers. It specializes in portrait photography, but anyone can use it to improve photography skills. The book includes interviews from Brian Higbee, Anna Wolf, and Kristina Loggia, who are some of the most established portrait photojournalists. George Elder is an expert street photographer who can introduce you to a new type of photography and help you take the first steps in understanding it. These photographers help you learn from art and history. They also explain how they get inspiration for their pictures. The book also includes conversations Jaime Diamond, Ben Zucker, and Erik Madigan Heck. Day 19 Photography is also a part of the book and they are skilled adventure photographers who have worked with Nike and Rockstar Games. Overall the book is highly recommended.

Free ebook- portrait photography

Street Faces: How To Shoot Street Photography Portraiture

This is a short book but it features a full guide for beginners who want to get into street photography. The book is also great for seasoned photographers who are looking for something quick to read which is insightful. It answers many questions that are frequently asked by beginners and is a must have for anyone serious about street photography. Street photography is troublesome to master and care must be taken in order to avoid offending anyone. This ebook teaches these basic skills and much more. The book is written by Thomas Leuthrad. He is an expert street photographer and has taught the subject for a long time. This means that while the book is brief, it delivers a better learning experience than many other books.

 

Free ebook- Night photography

 Alister Benn’s Introduction To Night Photography Ideas

You may have the perfect opportunity for a photo at night, but the low light environment is difficult to deal with and pictures may come out noisy or grainy. This is an issue every night photographer faces. The problem seems daunting at first but with the right kind of help, you can become much better at it.  Alister Benn’s Introduction to Night Photography Ideas is exactly that. The book is available for free and features instructions and tips for what is needed to take good photographs at night time. The ebook outlines the equipment needed and how to set it up. It also details common night photography techniques regarding ISO settings and high exposure times. It also outlines great ideas for photos and is overall a great book for improving photography skills. The book does all this and more in just 28 pages. Highly recommended!

free ebook- Macro photography techniques

Beautiful Macro Photography Techniques eBook

Macro Photography can yield great results and amazing photos but without the specific techniques and tools used by professionals, the results are mediocre at best. Taking a picture of something so small is a tough ask. Beautiful Macro Photography Techniques is a free photography ebook which consists of a step-by-step tutorial of taking macro photographs. The book explains the author’s choice of lens and focuses on the fundamentals but it also features advanced principles such as gear and focuses stacking. Photographer Michael Erlewine has written the book and the book can help capture fantastic shots with simplicity and effortlessness.

 

free ebook- Macro photography techniques

8 Types Of Natural Light eBook By Anne McKinnell

 

For budding photographers, knowing your setting and surroundings is absolutely essential. This includes the types of lighting. While natural light is a type of its own, expert photographers will tell you that there are many kinds of natural light. This can drastically affect your photographs and know your stuff can give you the edge. 8 Types of Natural Light eBook by Anne McKinnell is a great ebook in this regard. The book helps you harness the natural light to its full potential and learn techniques that increase the quality of shots. The writer has many years of experience in photography and the book has received great reviews. For outdoor photography and natural light photography, this book is indispensable.

 

Free ebook- 8 types of natural light

 

If you have a passion for taking pictures and want to become a bit more serious, these books will be great for you. With the help of these books, you can improve photography skills and master new genres of photography. New techniques and tips from experts can give you a great boost and help you capture stunning and elegant images.

Note: This guest post was contributed to Pixpa blog by the team at Photowoha.

Website Builder Insider Review: Yet Another Accolade for Pixpa

Over a month after Finances Online’s review of Pixpa, it has now been reviewed by the experts at Website Builder Insider. We’re happy to share that their verdict is in solidarity with our goal of giving creative professionals everything to showcase and sell their work online.  

In addition to portfolio building tool, the experts put blogging, proofing, and e-commerce features offered by Pixpa to test. Gladly, these features stood out on most of their parameters.

Not just that, comparing Pixpa with WordPress, the experts came out with the thought that the blog interface offered by Pixpa is more functional than standard interfaces in that it offers a more comprehensive interface to add metadata, cover page (with parallax animation), change publishing date, and more, right at the editing interface, making it a great choice for bloggers. We certainly are ecstatic about that!

Allowing independent creatives to sell their artwork online effortlessly has been on top of our priority list and we’re glad that the reviewers understood our concern. The reviewers quoted the features offered by Pixpa to be ‘more than enough’ to manage an online store. Our suite of e-commerce marketing tools like cart abandonment emails, coupons, and more give users the flexibility to run their online stores like pros.

This review by Website Builder Insider is just another milestone for us that reinforces our product vision to keep us motivated to make Pixpa better for creative professionals.

 

Neel Dongre Grants/Awards for Excellence in Photography 2017-18

We’re glad to announce that Pixpa is a proud supporter of Neel Dongre Grants/Awards for Excellence in Photography 2017-18.  

Conceived in the year 2012, Neel Dongre Awards/Grants for Excellence in Photography is one of the prestigious grants awarded to promising photographers in recognition for their exemplary work in photography. The award commemorates the inspiring life of Neel Dongre (1944-2009), his unyielding entrepreneurial spirit, and his constant endeavor to push the young to dream bigger and achieve them. Over the last five years, these highly regarded awards have had 30 recipients, most of whom have been doing distinguishable work in documentary photography and photojournalism. Neel Dongre Awards/Grants is administered by the managing committee that comprises of eminent figures such as Mrs. Urmila Dongre, Parthiv Shah, Aditya Arya (Trustee), Premola Ghose, and Asha Rani Mathur.

The awards/grants are organized by Indian Photo Archive Foundation, led by Aditya Arya and Parthiv Shah.

If you think that your work deserves the attention of these eminent people, consider entering this premier competition.  The entries close on 30 June 2017. To know more about the eligibility to enter these awards/grants, you can visit this link.

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