Welcome to South East Open Studios 2024!
DOWNLOAD GUIDELINES (PDF)
Key dates for your diary:
- Registration will open on January 1st 2024 and by request has now been extended until 11:59 pm on Sunday, February 4th 2024.
- SEOS 2024 will take place between the 1st – 30th June 2024.
Are you an artist in Kent, East Sussex, or the Surrey borders?
Would you like to have your work seen by thousands of art lovers?
– by June, could you create a body of work that demonstrates what you do?
– do you have, or could you share a studio space that you could open to visitors?
– alongside our own regional promotion, could you take responsibility for marketing and promoting your own studio in your area?
If you answered ‘yes’ to all these questions, then you are ready, and we would love to have you on board.
If you are looking for other artists and makers to share your space, or if you need a space to show your work, please check out our Space Share Notice Board for announcements here.
Local Area Co-ordinators
SEOS has the support of local Area Co-ordinators who are there to help you manage your membership and open studio event. Please contact your local co-ordinator to establish a connection with them.
|Tonbridge & Malling
|Bromley & Dartford
|Medway & Swale
|Rother & Hastings
|Rosemary Gurney Clark
|Folkestone & Hythe
Before you start registering, please use this checklist to make sure you have everything you need…
– Have you decided on your opening hours and put them in your diary (so you don’t forget)?
– You can now choose to be open for up to 19 days during the event. Giving you greater choice in the days you are open.
– Do you have the full (and accurate) address for where you are showing your work? (If you are showing with a group of people, please make sure everyone has EXACTLY THE SAME address)
– Have you prepared your imagery? A main image for the Guide, 3 additional pictures of your work and (optional) a picture of you? Pictures must be in TIFF, JPG or PNG format, no more than 6mb and titled as: ‘Artist name_Artwork title’ (see further information below for image guidance)
Our Membership fee for 2024 is £158 per member.
This represents great value for the support that will be received and the opportunities created by taking part. The rise on last year reflects unavoidable increased costs, specifically relating to printing the Guide. We’ve done the maths, and are confident the extra £10 per registration will enable another successful year.
- We do not offer a group discount – all group members, regardless of group size, are required to pay the Membership fee.
- It is our policy that during the event, spaces must not be shared with any non-members and all work displayed must have been created by a paid SEOS member. Breach of this policy may lead to a ban from future SEOS events.
SEOS Member Expectations
As South East Open Studios grows and evolves, we will always do our best to promote, encourage and give our members the best SEOS experience that we can. SEOS is run by a team of hard-working volunteers, and every year, its success relies on both the Committee AND each and every member.
As a member of South East Open Studios, you will be expected to help raise the profile of your own studio and promote yourself and your group, and to cooperate with Committee members to help us make sure that the event runs as smoothly as possible.
South East Open Studios is run by volunteers; we are all artists and makers and feel passionate about the visual arts and the success of SEOS, but to achieve a successful event we need members to work with us on these key areas:
- Every year we produce up to 30,000 copies of the Guide – it is essential that members use this guide to promote yourselves and all the other artists and makers in your area, to really connect with your community and attract visitors to your studios
- Throughout the year you will be featured on our vibrant social media platforms – it is up to you to engage with these features, to comment and repost to your own stories and pages, the more you engage, the better the reach we can achieve and the more people will see your work
- Every member is given their own ‘Artist Page’ on our website – all our promotional activities are about driving traffic to our website, where visitors can find out all about you and your work. Last year we had 10,000 visits to our website during the event and we encourage you to use this page to your advantage by sharing your artist page link, particularly if you don’t have your own website
- We spend over £2k annually on placing advertisements and editorials in relevant press – if you provide us with striking, high-quality imagery you have the chance of your work being used to promote the event and appear on the front of the Guide
In the registration form this year, you will find a question asking how you intend to work with us to make South East Open Studios the best and most successful event it can be.
Members are encouraged to use all the fantastic materials we provide, to take responsibility for marketing your own events and attract visitors to your studios.
We have made some changes to our registration process, even if you are a regular member, please read on…
What to prepare BEFORE registering:
- Your SEOS Area – Find out your area by entering the postcode of your STUDIO or VENUE at: https://www.gov.uk/find-local-council to find your district council area.
- Your ‘What 3 Words’ address
What3Words is an initiative where the world has been divided into 3 metre squares. Each square has been given a unique combination of three words. It’s a very easy way to find and share exact locations. Visit: https://what3words.com/ and type your STUDIO or VENUE’S postcode into the search box at the top. Click the exact location of your studio on the map and make a note of the three identifying words it gives you.
e.g. The w3w code for The National Gallery’s doorway is ‘///rests.words.dock’
- Your venue details – You will need your studio / venue street address. If you are exhibiting as part of a group, please liaise carefully with your group members to ensure every member provides correct (and matching!) information.
- Your opening days – Plan which days you intend to be open between the 1st – 30th June in advance. You do NOT have to open your studio or be present every day, but we do recommend opening for at least one of the weekends if you can. Your studio can be listed in the guide as being open for up to 19 days*.
– please note: A ‘standard opening day’ is between 10am and 4pm. If this does not suit you, you have the opportunity to add a set of ‘alternative times’ when completing the form. *Not restricted to 19 days for registered business premises.
- Your artist’s statement – We require a short (max. 200 characters) Artist’s Statement about you and your work. Please provide this in the third person, as we will use this blurb to promote you. Think about how you would define your primary medium (e.g. Painter, Ceramicist, Textile Artist).
200 character bio example: ‘John Smith is an experienced ceramicist showing in Hastings. John’s work is inspired by coastal landscapes, and he enjoys experimenting with bold textural elements and using locally sourced materials.’
- Your website and /or social media links (if applicable) – We will ask you for a primary website address or social media handle, which will be printed in the guide. Additionally, we will ask for any other social media links you wish to share, which will be included on your ‘Artist’s Page’ on the website. PLEASE ENSURE these are art-related profiles and pages ONLY. Personal profiles, or profiles not representing you as an artist or maker, will not be included.
- Your contact details – You will need to provide your contact details so that we are able to communicate with you.
- Artwork images – You will need to provide up to 4 high quality images of your artwork, plus one optional ‘profile photo’ of you at work. The first image you provide will be printed in our Guide. Please see further information on image submission below.
Choosing your images:
The visual ‘first impression’ of your work is one of the most important factors for encouraging art lovers to visit your studio. It is important that you provide the highest quality images of your work that you can, to ensure that you are represented as well as possible.
You will be asked to provide up to 4 images of your work, plus an optional image of yourself as the artist or maker, as follows:
1 – The image that you would like to appear in the printed guide
2 – A further piece of work
3 – A further piece of work
4 – A further piece of work
5 (Optional) – A profile picture, preferably of you at work (for your ‘profile photo’ on the website). This may also be used to feature SEOS artists both in the guide and on social media.
Choosing a landscape or square image format will result in a larger image area in the printed guide. Use either the whole piece or a detail. See example below.
Image Quality Specifications:
Images should be provided in JPG, PNG or TIFF format and be a MAXIMUM of 6MB in size.
Throughout the year, we have opportunities to submit our members’ artwork for print and online magazine editorials; we use member artwork to advertise and promote the event, and of course we will feature a carefully selected piece of artwork as our beautiful Guide cover art. We are only able to use the highest quality images for promotional purposes – magazines all have minimum image size and quality specifications – so if you would like your artwork to have a chance at external publication or to be considered for our Guide cover and promotional materials, please ensure that the quality of your images is of a sufficient standard.
- Ensure your image is well lit and in focus (see ‘Photographing your Artwork’ below)
- Try to provide your Guide image in a rectangle (landscape) or square format. This is to best maximise your allocated space in the Guide – additional images do not have to be any specific format.
- Ensure the file is left in RGB colour (as shot). DO NOT convert to CMYK
- Ensure that your images are a MINIMUM of 1500 pixels on the shortest side
- Ensure that ALL your image files are labelled correctly (see ‘Labelling your image files’ below)
- Choose a Guide image that represents you and your practise
- Upload a logo, or images with a text overlay
- Upload an image that is mostly frame or mount, or where the artwork is not the key focus
- Upload a very tall image for your Guide photo (consider cropping a landscape rectangle, or square, of close-up detail instead)
Labelling your image files:
Before submitting, please re-name your image files as follows.
1 – The image that you would like to appear in the printed guide: 1-Artist Name-Image Title (Example: 1-John Smith-Winter Landscape)
2 – A further piece of work: 2-Artist Name-Image Title
3 – A further piece of work: 3-Artist Name-Image Title
4 – A further piece of work: 4-Artist Name-Image Title
5 (Optional) – A profile picture, preferably of you at work (for your website ‘profile photo’): 5-Artist Name-ProfilePhoto
NOTE: Your first image (labelled ‘1-‘) will be used for the Guide.
Photographing your Artwork:
Before you photograph your artwork, think carefully about the 6 x 4cm landscape space it will occupy in the guide. At this size, fine detail will not be seen; simple images and bold areas of colour or tone will have more impact. If your work is very tall, or letter box shape, consider instead showing a landscape detail crop to make maximum use of the space.
- Photograph your work BEFORE it is mounted under glass or varnished.
- Remove paintings from their frames, if possible, choose a bright day and place your work in the shade – keep your lighting as ‘flat’ as possible to avoid unwanted highlights and shadows across your work.
- Make sure the flash on your camera/phone is turned off.
- It’s most important you take the picture as square-on to your work as possible i.e. Not at an angle, or it will be distorted.
- If possible, fix your camera on a tripod and use a remote control or timer.
- Most 3D objects look better if they are casting a shadow. To achieve this use direct sunlight when it’s at a low angle (i.e. morning or evening).
- If your light source is too directional and your shadows are too harsh, you can use a white canvas, sheet or piece of card on the opposite side to your light source to ‘bounce’ light back onto your item and soften the shadows.
- To photograph small items (ceramics, jewellery etc), create a seamless background by laying a large sheet of white or neutral coloured paper or cloth on a table and gently curve it up onto a wall behind – this will become your all-in-one surface and backdrop (Top tip: neutral wallpaper samples are GREAT for this!).
The Registration process:
Step 1: Fill out the registration form (and please spellcheck – particularly your contact details!).
Step 2: Upload high quality images showing your artwork.
Step 3: Press ‘submit’ at the end of the form; you will receive a confirmation email – this will include payment details
Step 4: Make the payment as instructed
Step 5: Congratulations – you’ve registered for SEOS 2024! Look out for emails and newsletters with updates and further information.
Before Registration opens:
Keep an eye on our newsletters and social media pages for updates, and make sure you bookmark this page so you can return to it once Registration opens on January 1st!
Once Registration opens:
You will see a ‘REGISTER HERE’ button and can start your exciting journey to becoming a SEOS member… We can’t wait to meet you.