Resumes for Artists and Craftspeople Feed

Looking for a JOB - Step 5 CUSTOMIZE Your Resume

One-size resume does not fit all. No matter what level of your career, it is best to adjust your resume for each audience.  You don't have to start from scratch every time, but slight modifications to your resume are worth some attention to the details or key highlights.

As a professional artist, you will constantly improve and update. 

Customize-Your-ResumeFor the job search, CUSTOMIZE YOUR RESUME...
Remember the previous post about the SlideShare resume where the examples customized his resume presentation for each prospective job?  Have two or three main versions and tweak them here and there. One might feature particular skills or professional opportunities, or delete irrelevant content. Review your resume and adapt it to maximize relevance to that particular job.

Include keywords from the job posting in your resume if possible. Resumes online and submitted electronically are scanned for keywords (usually not a real person).

Life-Blue-Learn-IT-Game726.18.13cu For the job search, look for job boards....
Look at companies that you want to work for in the future. Most larger companies have pages dedicated to employment positions they want to fill.

Bookmark the job pages so you can check them every morning.

Collect bookmarks to job board.

While I think that online job boards are the longest of long shots for getting a is one possible approach. But you never know.  My daughter got a job through a recruiter looking at a job board where she had posted her resume.



LOOKING for a JOB - Step 4: Innovative Resume

Looking for a Job - Step 3 Work on Your Resume

LOOKING for a JOB - Step 2: Facebook Privacy, Join LinkedIN

LOOKING for a JOB - The Year After School Step 1: Take a digital class.


LOOKING for a JOB - Step 3 WORK on Your RESUME

Work on your resume. That sounds so simple, but it takes some time and repeated reviews. Ask your friends and parents to proof read and critique each edit. Improve, edit, improve, edit, improve.

ResumeBadgeThis is true for seasoned professionals, too.
Your resume is the foundation for grant applications, social network profiles, and opportunities. It never fails that the request for your resume happens on the busiest days. Be prepared!!!!!!!!!!!
  ResumeOne "speling eror" on your resume raises a red flag about your abilities and attention to detail; two errors and your job prospects diminish considerably. Obviously, if you don't care what your own resume looks like, employers will think this sloppy attitude will carry over to your job performance. You won't get hired.


Make sure your resume includes the keywords for the job you are looking to find.
Posted on a job board or sent to a online job posting, it will most likely be scanned electronically for a keyword search. Use the "lingo" for your field and future job.

Use the free resume websites that are available online for formatting. Many fields have customary styles that do not translate to other media.

Your resume should be no more than one page.
Start on this today.
Take a couple of days to keep reviewing and improving.

Consider adding the fact that you are taking a digital skills class to your resume. Taking a class will look really good. Sorry to say, but do not include "workshops" on your resume. It looks like filler.



Resume - Ready, Set, Go!

Ingredients for success - your resume.

Posted Job Opening - What a Successful Response looks like!

Resumes - How much is too much info?



Posted Job Opening - What a Successful Response looks like!

Interviewing for a video editor position
has been an eye-opening experience. Looking at 20+ resumes in less than 24 hours from one job posting has given me a real insight into a successful reply for an opportunity.

PENCILbikeCoasterRED_72vertical.greenAfter an afternoon of interviewing editors for a "phase one" video, these are my observations for what a great reply looks like (perhaps for any opportunity).

1. Personalize the reply. Briefly make a case about why you want to work on the job, be in the show, or why this opportunity resonates with you.

2. Describe the job skills you have that fit the job.

3. Respond immediately. Don't wait. There may be so many other applicants for the opportunity that the requestor may stop looking.

4. If a phone number is included in the opportunity, call immediately.

5. If the email is included, email immediately.

6. If the phone and email are included, do both. It shows you are really interested.

7. Include links to previous projects, artwork, or other information that is relevant. An online presence including a website is essential. Include multiple links if you want, but if you don't include this information right from the beginning your introduction seems incomplete.

8. Include your resume either in the email or as an attachment (even if they didn't ask for it).

9. Include your email address and phone number in the body or signature of the email. Yes, I know the email is at the top, but if a person is overwhelmed by the responses, it is very hard to keep track of everything. By including your email and phone number, it will be easy to contact you during the decision-making process.

P.S. This is a super amazing antique pencil I found. The top has an enamel clip that says," Use the Atherton Coaster Brake for Bicycles." Pencils have a lot to say.

This post was updated on March 12, 2022.

What Is the Difference Between Curated and Juried?

I frequently hear the terms "curated" and "juried" mixed up or misused, used interchangeably for the other when the terms are distinctly different.

Do you know, "What's the Difference between 'curated' and 'juried'?"

Yes, both curators and jurors select work, but there is a BIG difference.

A curated exhibition means the "curator" is responsible for selecting the theme, conceptual focus, title, AND work.
The curator has significant, if not authoritative input from start to finish, from selecting the theme, finding artwork that supports the curator's interpretation of the theme, along with input into the exhibition installation and catalog. 

Curator at the METROPOLITAN Museum of Art
Curator James David Draper
Curator at the Metropolitan Museum of
Art Department of European Sculpture
and Decorative Arts looking at an angel
sculpture attributed to Michelangelo.
Photo from NY Daily News

A well-curated show is a finely tuned cohesive selection of work to support the premise of the curator. The act of selecting the work reveals the curator's creativity and intellectual process. A well-curated exhibition is a masterpiece. This is why great curators are so highly regarded.

A curated exhibition may or may not extend a "call for entries." Usually, each curator considers him or herself as expertly informed about the artwork they want to include in an exhibition. Research on the curated theme is part of the curator's process. On the other hand, occasionally a curator may extend a call for submissions to explore or find images of new work that may be as yet unknown.


In contrast, a juried show always has a call for entries. 

The exhibition sponsor chooses the theme of the exhibition, extends a call for submissions, and invites jurors to select only from submissions what they feel best represents the theme or premise of the show.

A juried exhibition has one or more jurors select the work (and the exhibition sponsor seldom participates in the selection of work).

BalancedsJURYUsually, the jurors do not see the names of the artists. Since the selection of work is limited to the work submitted for juried review, the outcome is unpredictable and may not support the theme in a cohesive manner.

Sure, the jurors can select anything from the pool of work submitted, but the jurors can not invite artists to submit specific works. If they have a preconceived idea about the theme, and work is not submitted to support a particular train of thought, there is nothing a juror can do. This relative lack of control over the selection of work can produce an unpredictable or inconsistent show or a delightful surprise.

After the work is selected by the juror(s), usually the juror's role is finished.

In summary
A curator is often responsible for an entire show from beginning to end, including, but not limited to, selecting the theme, artwork, writing wall text, labels for the work, catalog essay and perhaps working with staff or exhibition designers on the installation.

In comparison, jurors are only responsible for selecting work.

Understand the difference between curated and juried on your resume and in professional situations.


This post was updated on February 11, 2022.

Ingredients for success - your resume.

"Mother Tree"  © Tracey Bell
sterling silver
16" length, largest leaf is 1.75"

Dear Harriete,
Have you covered how to compose a CV for submitting to galleries in your professional development series?  I'm trying to figure out how to do that now and it seems most advice on the web isn't geared towards artists. Thanks, Tracey Bell

First of all, many people use the term CV when they mean resume. A CV should include all of your professional accomplishments. A Resume is abridged information, in other words, a summary of your professional experience. I have several resumes a one page, two page, five page, and a Judaica resume. These are just examples, but the point is to modify your resume for each particular situation. 

At the beginning of your career, I would put your formal education at the top. Thirty years from graduation, it just seems that your education is a little less relevant and it might move further down on your resume.

Put the most important items at the top and work your way down to less important items.

Here is a list of suggested categories in an appropriate order.

Name and Contact information including address, phone numbers, fax, e-mail, web site.  Do not include your address when posting your resume online, displaying it in a public situation, or sending this resume to a gallery for their clients.

Education degree, date, institution, major 

If you don't have a formal academic education in the arts, perhaps you can push your professional degree further down the page as it might be less relevant to your art career than recent exhibitions or professional experience.

Workshops (if they were formative to your current work) could be covered as a separate category, but they are not education. Considering a two days to two-week workshop equivalent to four or seven years of dedicated study seems to be stretching a resume. Be honest and proud of what you have accomplished, but don't overstate the facts.   

    Solo Exhibitions
    Group Exhibitions 

At the beginning of your career list shows by year.  As you add shows and you have a good number to list, maybe you will want to divide them up into categories.  Eventually, you might have International, Invitational, Juried National, Juried Regional.  List shows by date, most recent first, in each category.

     Gallery exhibitions

Exhibitions at galleries or retail spaces should be a separate list from the museum and non-profit exhibition spaces.

Collections (Public, Private, Corporate) Never list the name of a private collector without their permission.
Bibliography This could be called Selected Reviews and/or published photos of my work
    Sub-categories might be: Books, Magazines, Selected Periodicals, Newspapers, etc.
Current employment (if this is relevant to your art career)
Current Gallery Representation

Another option for your resume may be listing your social networking sites, Facebook, Crafthaus, Flickr, Etsy, etc. I would only list these items if you keep them looking professional. If you are posting family photos, commentary about your spa experience, etc. do not include this link.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT RESUMES AND CV can be found on the CAA (College Art Association) website.

Your CV and Resume should include only the truth. No exaggerations. Be honest.

TMI (Too Much Information) Don't include information about your family, marital status, children, religion, pets, hobbies, travel, jobs irrelevant to your professional art career.

You can look at my resume on my website. Many artists include a resume on their site so look around for other examples. There are many right ways to make an art career resume, but you are correct in assuming that an art resume is different than the corporate style.

The Biggest Mistakes I See on Resumes, and How to Correct Them by Laszlo Block

Looking for a JOB - Step 5 CUSTOMIZE Your Resume

Resumes - How much is too much info?

Resume - Ready, Set, Go! 

Toolboxes and cup 029 Toolboxes and cup 011

This post was updated on January 5, 2022, to provide current links.

How do I submit work to a gallery for view?

This is part two of a four-part series by Don Friedlich, Harriete Estel Berman, and Andy Cooperman for artists and craftspeople about submitting work to galleries and retail establishments. 

After your research to find a gallery appropriate for your work now it is time to contact the gallery with images of your work.

First look online at the gallery’s website for information on how artists should submit images and material for review. Check the website thoroughly: often this information is buried deep in the website since this is not information commonly accessed by the public.

If you don’t see this information on the website, call or email the gallery directly.  Introduce yourself and ask about their procedures for artist review and application. Don’t be surprised if they say that they aren’t taking on any new artists: the gallery world is limited and selective. (Note: this post was written in 2009. The number of galleries has continued to decrease due to many factors.)

If you are invited to submit material, follow the gallery’s submission guidelines EXACTLY including the number, size, and type of images. Some galleries prefer a package sent through the mail; others may prefer email submissions or a link to your website.

Most importantly, submit only fantastic images. Gallery owners and managers may reasonably assume that the quality of the photographic documentation that you submit is representative of the quality of your work.  While this assumption may not be true, visual images play a critical role and their quality and appearance do influence the gallery’s assessment of your work. 

Do not send images with distractions in the background.  I would suggest a background of white or a graduated grey.  Brightly colored backgrounds are fine for websites (e.g. Etsy, ) or for social media, but are rarely used in the “gallery world.”  

I took some photos of my own work to illustrate what I mean by low-quality photography.
BadIMG_BraceletWThe first image ( left) has a distracting background and a hot spot where the flash is bouncing or sunlight is glaring.

BadIMG_earringsWThe next photo (right) has many problems. The colored background with embroidered beads is distracting. Wrinkled fabric is never a good photo backdrop. The earrings are off to one side with too much empty space within the frame. The image is slightly out of focus.

Here are a few suggestions for top quality images:

•    Avoid an unbalanced image, such as the subject off to one side.
•    Avoid too much empty space in your image – fill the frame.
•    Correct lighting and exposure are essential.
•    Do not use heavily textured fabric or paper, wrinkled or draped material, dramatic or contrived backgrounds such as sunsets, landscapes, pebbles, or exotic patterns. While it may work for social media, You always need a plain background option.

YOUR IMAGE PACKAGE should look creative and professional.  Unless the gallery specifies differently, include the following in your image package:

•    Cover Letter - stating briefly why your work is appropriate for that particular gallery or retail establishment. If you have visited the gallery, say so in the letter. Make it clear that your decision to approach this particular gallery is based on your research into the work they represent.
•    Resume  - one or two pages
•    Artist Statement - one or two short paragraphs (short, entertaining, and relevant about your work). Pique their interest in your work with interesting content, and make it relevant to the gallery and their audience. 
•    Images of your work - sent by email or perhaps offer access to larger images on your website or image transfer site such as WeTransfer or Dropbox.  
Send jpg (for easy viewing) if sending the images by email.
Considering sending both jpg and tif 300 dpi (or higher for print quality) for an exhibition opportunity. 
Send large images or quantities of images (only if requested). Use a site such as Dropbox or WeTransfer.  
•    Image description sheet should include the following information for every image.
o    Title of work
o    Date of work
o    Artist’s name
o    Brief description of materials
o    Dimensions (height x width x depth)
o    Photo Credit of the photographer

Contact Sheet (Page of thumbnail images and key information)   SampleCONTACTsheetHANDOUT
A contact sheet is rarely requested but if you are sending a number of images, I think this adds a lot to your image presentation. This way the gallery or store can quickly glance at your images on the Contact sheet as a reference.

Make sure that the titles for the images include your last name and the title of the work (or at least part of the title).Example for my images:   BermanH_IDneck.jpg   This way if they download your images, they will organize themselves as a group.

If I am mailing an envelope, I always create a colorful, professional envelope styled to be consistent with your work and the gallery. Your key to success is hard work, originality, and persistence.

Good luck.

Harriete Estel Berman

This post was updated on December 20, 2021

I never make any money, how do you stay motivated year after year?

Dear Harriete,

Lily Necklace by Michelle Pajak-Reynolds

As I prepare my yearly records for my accountant, the expenses vs income $$'s are always lopsided.  While I'm very frugal, I spend WAY more than what comes back. I hope it's not too personal a question to ask, but have your $$'s ever turned out this way as well.  Sometimes I feel like my art habit is pulling too much out of my household income.  While it's really only a small percentage of our total, it's still several thousand each year. How do you stay motivated year after year?


Worried about negative cash flow

Dear At a Loss,

You've really hit on a couple of fundamental issues.  One, Can I make a living out of my art?  And two, How do I stay motivated?  Many, if not all, artists have been confronted by these issues. 

Let's separate these topics because I think of them as entirely different. In this post, I will address the money issue and the importance of using Short Term and Long Term Goals for your professional development and motivation. Then, continue with a few suggestions to stay motivated and inspired about your work.

Personally, I have never made much money from my artwork despite the fact that  I do more every year to generate income.  To make ends meet, I have a part-time job (leading exercise) and do silver repair work.  I give lectures, workshops and speak at schools and conferences.  Each year a couple of major pieces do sell and some smaller items sell more often.  The art sales alone are not enough to cover my expenses, sometimes close but not enough.

Harriete and emiko sorting for future use r


Making a living from your art. The reality for most artists and craftspeople is that they need additional sources of income outside of their artwork to pay the rent and support themselves. To put it bluntly, don't give up your day job. 

This may not be the answer you wanted to hear, but making a living from art is not a practical motivator. It is irregular and outside of your control. 

Revenue from my work is not my sole source of motivation. Really it is only a small part of the big picture.

So how can an artist/maker stay motivated? First and most important, you need to decide your Goals for Success,  then break this down into Short Term and Long Term Goals.

Be honest with yourself? Is making a living from your work your most important goal? Then your production methods need to align with this goal along with the type of items you produce.

I am more motivated by making the best, original, innovative work that I can and finding exhibition opportunities. Displaying my work in great exhibitions, included in books and magazines, and purchased for museum collections are my goals. As an artist, I work at aligning my work methods and designs toward these goals. 


Seek your validation from your short and long-term goals. Examples include:

  • producing one AMAZING piece per year
  • producing smaller or less involved work that costs less
  • having your work published in books and magazines,
  • having your work included in shows,
  • learning how to update your own website, 
  • developing your Photoshop skills,
  • participating in a show,
  • organizing a show of your fellow artists,
  • making new opportunities for yourself and others (like a Critique Group),
  • generating money,
  • generating sales.

PARTICIPATE IN A Critique by  Downloading Critique Group Guidelines
This is very important. Use the Critique Group to:

  • Stimulate your work,
  • Create deadlines for yourself to get work done for the next Critique Group
  • Give and receive honest feedback. 
  • Meet monthly to motivate each other.
  • Potentially, the group can create group show opportunities. 

Vague and gratuitous compliments serve no purpose here. Be clear and on target. An "I like it" or "that is interesting" is not useful. Be specific about what works visually and what doesn't. Give a detailed interpretation and identify what elements caused or triggered your perception.  Draw on your knowledge of each artist's objectives and target your comments toward their objectives. Are the fabrication techniques aligned with their goals.  Focus on constructive criticism.  Avoid talking about children, dogs, cats, and personal problems.

A link to my Critique Group Guidelines is provided here.  I recommend that a group have between three and ten people to maintain a core group familiar with the work, previous progress, and the short and long-term goals of each member. 

For me, the path to success is to make the best, most interesting, deep, esoteric, off the beaten path, unique,  "_________(fill in the blank here)" in the whole world. It has to reflect your inner core, your passion, your inner being, your singular artistic voice, and a personal vocabulary of fabrication methods that you have developed over time. The more unique, the more unusual the work, the more likely you will reach your goals. Copycat designs will quickly hit the "glass ceiling" of the art and craft world.

Write down the goals for your work, and then study your approach to design and production. Are your work methods, approach to production, promotion, networking, and dedicated focus all aligned like the stars? Are you working in a straight line? 

Your goals for your art or craft may be different than mine, the most important thing to realize is that you will never reach your goals if you aren't clear and honest with yourself.

Harriete Estel Berman


 This post was updated on December 20, 2021


Resumes - What qualifies for the publicity category?

Dear Harriete,

Red Lush Bracelet by Michelle Pajak-Reynolds

My husband and I are having a debate about publication/press listings on a CV/Resume. The question is this: If your work is in a group show that receives press coverage, but your name and/or piece isn't mentioned in the article, should you still list the article on your CV/resume? I'm not telling who's on which side of this debate, so please be honest, but there is a week's worth of dish duty wagered on your answer....

Resume Quandary                                                       

Dear To List or Not To List, 
You should only list a review or publicity on your resume if your work is mentioned in the text or if a photograph of your work is published in the review or article.  If you were in the show, of course, you can still list the exhibition under the exhibition category on your resume.

Additional information on your resume about articles and reviews might be useful.  I often suggest that a listing of a review should include the author, publication, volume, date, and maybe even whether it included a photo.

Here is an example from my resume:

Cross Gans, Jennifer. (2006, Spring). Scents of Purpose: Artists Interpret the Spice Box. Metalsmith, 54. [text and photos]

Artists and craftspeople can increase their chances of being included in a review or article by sending amazing, dazzling, professional quality images to the exhibition sponsor two to three months before the exhibition opens. The sponsor may use your images in the article about the show, just because your images are FANTASTIC!!!

Digital images that you took yourself, probably won't be good enough. You need professional quality images taken by a professional photographer.  Set money aside and invest in top-notch photography of your work.  If there is no art or craft photographer in your area, consider the next town or state. SNAG has a list of photographers on their website which may be helpful.

Hope this information about resumes is helpful.


This post was updated for accuracy on December 15, 2021 

Resumes - How much is too much info?

ASK Harriete:

When putting together biographical information for a prospective retail venue, is including personal information appropriate? If so, what information should be shared and what information is TMI (too much info)?


Resume Challenged

 Dear Resume Challenged,

Let’s first talk about resumes. A resume for your art/craft career should stick to professional information only. Leave out your birth date, children, husband, pets, and previous occupations.  A one-page resume should make you look focused on your art or craft (even if you have multiple lives as a wife, mother, father, or another occupation that earns money.) Include only the information that is relevant to your art/craft career. If you are just starting out and don’t have anything to list in the categories suggested below, then delete that category (don’t have a category title and leave the space blank). You can enhance your resume by participating in shows sponsored by the Metal Arts Guild, taking on a board of directors position, or teaching a workshop to your peers. Volunteering your time in support of your art community is an excellent way to build your professional experience. 

If your limited professional exposure as an artist or craftsperson will not fill a one-page resume, then create a one paragraph bio instead. This bio should highlight your professional experience in a descriptive and entertaining manner using facts and achievements as much as possible. You may use your non-art education or other work experience but only if it can highlight how this has enhanced your artistic or creative vision. 

Do not include your home or mailing address if this resume will be shown to the general public or shown to collectors by your gallery. These days a phone number, email address, and/or website are adequate information for anyone to contact you.

The education category would include your formal education in the arts.  I personally do not care to see workshops or seminars that you have taken in the education category. A workshop (whether it is two weeks or a weekend) is not extensive enough education to warrant mention on your resume.  It just highlights the weakness of your formal education in craft or art. This last statement runs contrary to advice in a number of books and reflects my personal opinion, so you decide for yourself how relevant your workshop experience is to your current situation.

If you are self-taught, there is no issue. Just skip the education "category" and write about your extensive experience or abilities in the cover letter. 

Exhibitions should be listed with the most recent show first, then listed by years, as necessary. If you have enough shows, the Exhibition category could be further subdivided into solo shows, invitational shows, and juried exhibitions. Juried exhibitions could be further divided into international, national, and regional. Participation in a wholesale/retail craft fair or street fair does not fit in this exhibition category. Instead, you could create a category such as “retail venues.” 

The Publications category should include any books, magazines, or newspapers that included a picture or a review of your work either in a group or solo show. If you have a long list of items in this category, it could be subdivided into books, magazines, and newspapers. Sometimes it is nice to include the name of the juror or curator. 

Writing a review or article is a good way to gain additional professional exposure and experience. Consider building your resume by writing an article for your local guild or arts organization newsletter or other publications to help build your professional credibility in the art community. 

List only public collections such as museum or corporate clients. If you want to list the name of private collectors that own your work on your resume, you should ask their permission first. 

Professional Experience
Your art/craft resume should focus on establishing your credibility as an artist or craft person. Professional experience could include places where you have taught, worked as an artist-in-residence, or given slide lectures.  If you have organized a show or lecture, worked as a volunteer at the local art museum, helped with the installation of an exhibition, or involved in a leadership role with the Metal Arts Guild; all of these experiences enhance your art/craft career and get you out to meet new people and build your resume. List them under Professional Experience.

Professional Memberships
This could include your membership in a local or national Guild, or other art organizations. 

Some resume books suggest listing your hobbies, etc. This is not appropriate for an artist's resume. Skip it, no one cares. 

Here is an excellent resource for finding out more information about resumes.

Resume or  C.V.
A Resume is a summary or condensed version of your professional experience. You might have multiple versions of resumes such as one page, two page, and five page as your career develops.

A C.V. (abbreviation of curriculum vitae, Latin for “course of life”) is usually expected to include everything in your professional life, most often for an academic situation. The terms “resume” and “C.V.” are often used interchangeably. If a gallery asks for a C.V., clarify what they are really expecting, a one-page resume or a complete C.V. 

KEEP YOUR RESUME(s) & C.V. updated – ready at a moment’s notice. When a magazine, gallery, or curator calls for information about your work, they don’t want to hear that your resume isn’t current (it doesn’t sound professional) and they don’t want to wait. They want the information yesterday!

This post was updated on January 5, 2022 

LOOKING for a JOB - The Year After School