Call for artists




Visual artists and artisans living in Clark County, working in all media

Clark County Open Studios is a juried art event, offering a unique opportunity for you to gain further recognition as an artist, open your studio doors to the public, and to show and sell your work. For the community, Open Studios is a free self-guided tour that will enhance awareness of talented local artists while enriching the cultural life of Clark County neighborhoods.

Open Studios tour: Sat–Sun, NOVEMBER 12–13, 2016, 10 am to 5 pm

Preview exhibit and artists reception: First Friday NOVEMBER 4, 2016, 5–9 pm
Esther Short Building
610 Esther Street
Vancouver, WA 98660

APPLICATIONS CLOSED, announcements for 2016 Open Studio Artists ~June 17

  • Expand your audience by sharing where and how you work.

  • Take advantage of an opportunity to sell your work to the public.
    • All proceeds from studio sales going to the artists unless gallery contract specifies otherwise.

  • Gain exposure through Open Studios’ print, web, and social media marketing—including postcards, flyers, local advertising, yard signs, and more.
    • Artwork and contact information for each artist will be published in the full-color Open Studios guidebook.
    • An artist directory will also be published on the Open Studios website, including up to 3 images, a link to the artist’s website, and contact info. Your page will automatically be added to the upcoming permanent artist registry being developed by Arts of Clark County.

  • Preview exhibit and artists' reception featuring one work of art from each participant.
    • Artwork in the preview show will be for sale. Arts of Clark County will receive 50% commission on sales during the preview in support of the program. (if this conflicts with your local gallery contract artwork can be marked NFS with courtesy of your local gallery). This year unsold artwork will be returned in time for the tour!
    • Networking opportunities, meet and work with other local artists

Open Studios goes beyond a traditional art show in fostering a greater understanding of the artistic process by providing the public with a unique opportunity to enter the world of the visual artist and experience how, why and where art is created. The Open Studios tour is designed to support key goals for Clark County’s arts community:

  • Increase visibility and public awareness of practicing and accomplished creative artists in Clark County.

  • Bring arts education and cultural enrichment to Clark County neighborhoods.

  • Expand opportunity and accessibility for residents of all ages to experience art.

  • Develop the county's cultural climate, enhance its image, and support growth of the local economy through the arts.

Participating artists MUST have a regular ongoing studio workspace for creating art located within Clark County, Washington.

  • STUDIO SHARING: Open Studios was created to offer the public an opportunity to be invited into the working spaces of Clark County's artistic community and to have an authentic experience visiting a working artist. It is not intended for temporary set-ups in businesses or pop-up spaces. Sharing space in another artists studio must be approved on an individual basis and will only be granted when an artist's studio is inaccessible to the public.

  • The studio must retain the atmosphere of an active workspace, with materials, equipment and work-in-progress visible.

  • Artists must agree to not exhibit, sell or host non participating artists in the space over which they have interest or control.

  • Artists working in cluster studios should encourage their fellow artists to apply for participation in Open Studios.

  • Artists who are not officially participating in Open Studios are asked not to represent themselves in any way as Open Studios artists.

Clark County Open Studios is open to a wide range of visual media including painting, drawing, mixed media, sculpture, ceramics, wood, metal, glass, fiber arts, jewelry, photography, digital art, and printmaking. Art displayed in Open Studios must adhere to these guidelines:

  1. During Open Studios, participating artists must exhibit a minimum of 15 pieces of original art, created within the last three years.

  2. In addition to the required minimum number of original art works, reproductions for sale may also be exhibited with the following restrictions:
    • Only 20% of an artist’s Open Studios display space may be allocated to reproductions.
    • Original work should be prominent and seen first as visitors enter the studio area.
    • Reproductions must be clearly labeled as reproductions.
    • An explanation of the reproduction process must be posted near the presentation of any reproduction(s). This explanation should serve to educate the public about the distinction between original art and reproductions. (e.g. “These are giclée prints (copies) of my oil paintings, printed using archival inks and paper on an inkjet printer.”).

  1. First, note that YOUR APPLICATION MUST BE SUBMITTED ONLINE, so have your information and files available prior to filling out the online form.

  2. Prepare FIVE DIGITAL IMAGES of available work CREATED WITHIN THE LAST 3 YEARS. In addition, please supply at least ONE IMAGE OF THE STUDIO SPACE (ideally showing the artist at work) which may be used for Open Studios promotion.

    Need help getting professional photos of your work? Dan Kvitka or Courtney Frisse both specialize in photographing art and would be able to do an excellent job for you.

  3. Your digital images can be uploaded through the online application.

    Digital images must be:
    • JPEG file format,
    • 300 ppi resolution,
    • a minimum of 900 pixels on the horizontal dimension,
    • no greater than 2MB per image,
    • with file names following this format: "Lastname_Firstname_01.jpg", "Lastname_Firstname_02.jpg", etc.

  4. Write a BRIEF 300 character maximum, (about 50 words) artist statement describing your conceptual approach and creative process and have it ready to paste into the online application.

  5. Fill out and submit the online APPLICATION. Note: Upon submitting your application, you will be directed to a PayPal form for paying the $25 application fee. (Application link will go live on April 1, 2016).

Arts of Clark County Open Studios Tour will showcase art in a broad range of media and styles. The event contributes to public awareness of the quality and diversity of artists in our community. Because of the increasing number of applicants, jurying is very competitive and there is strict enforcement of the guidelines. Participation in Clark County Open Studios is intended for professional artists who are actively producing and exhibiting their work. Application material will not be judged on personal tastes or preferences.

Ruth Offen, owner/director of Waterworks Gallery, Friday Harbor, WA
Mark R. Smith, artist and professor at Portland Community College, Portland, OR

After your non-refundable $25 application fee is received and your application has demonstrated that you meet studio eligibility requirements and art guidelines, a panel of judges will view and score your submitted images using these criteria:

  • Originality/Creativity
    Does the artist’s work express a unique style/voice and vision?

  • Craftsmanship/Use of Materials or Media
    Does the artist’s work show mastery over his/her medium or innovative use of materials/media?

Artists who are accepted will be contacted shortly after the official submission deadline, and will receive an acceptance letter confirming their participation in the event. A PARTICIPATION FEE OF $100 will be required at this time and must be paid NO LATER THAN JUNE 30.

Select payment type:
Upon acceptance you will have access to our artist’s info page with Open Studio Tour essentials to help guide you with studio preparation, marketing plans, and a timeline of events.

While Arts of Clark County provides the administrative event planning, marketing and promotional support for participating artists, be aware that your active involvement and volunteer work by participating artists will be essential in making this a successful event.

QUESTIONS? For more information contact Jennifer Williams, Clark County Open Studios director.