Calling all artists!
You may have noticed that we’ve been highlighting the arts for a number of months in our pages, featuring in nearly every issue older adults who have either returned to an art or craft they enjoyed in their youth, or taken up something completely new in retirement.
We have also recently published lists of the many arts and craft classes offered in the local area.
All of this has been part of our Celebration of the Arts — a year-long project of the Beacon to encourage readers to find a new artistic passion (or reinvigorate an old one).
The Celebration of the Arts was inspired by moving stories from Beacon readers who have developed a passion later in life for fine arts, photography and poetry — people like Lori Gottlieb, jewelry maker, who graced the Baltimore Beacon cover in March, and Pauline Rakis, featured in the February Howard County Beacon.
So tell me: Do you paint or draw? Perhaps you make pottery, jewelry or sculpt. Or do you enjoy digital photography or write poetry?
In whichever of these arts you shine, you are invited to enter your best works in our online Celebration of the Arts competition — open only to amateur artists 50 and over who live in Maryland, D.C. or Virginia.
Winners will receive awards, cash prizes (up to $100), as well as public showings of their works, including the opportunity to exhibit at one or more area galleries.
In addition, photos of all artists and their works will be published in a special “Celebration of the Arts” section to be printed in the September issue of the Beacon.
How to enter
You may enter original works created after the age of 50 in one or more of four categories, up to three items in each:
— Painting or Drawing: using any medium (watercolor, pastel, oil, pen and ink, etc.)
— Sculpture/Jewelry/Pottery/Mixed Media: this broad category includes any three-dimensional artwork in any medium (wood, stone, metals, fired clay, fiber art, found object art, etc.)
— Photography: images of people, places or objects, as well as abstract and other images manipulated by digital means
— Poetry: a poem in any format no longer than two pages typed, double-spaced
The online competition opens April 1 and runs through June 29, 2018.
PLEASE NOTE: All entries must be photos of your artwork (and even of poetry), and must be uploaded to our online competition website. Detailed instructions and rules can be found at bit.ly/BeaconCelebration or on the Beacon website’s Celebration of the Arts page.
If you need assistance in either photographing your artwork or in uploading your entries, print out the instructions and take them to a friend (or perhaps child or grandchild) who can help you. If you live in a community with a computer center, someone there may also be able to assist you.
Winners will be announced in August, with first, second and third place awards as well as honorable mentions.
Winners works (or photos of them) will be displayed at 50+ Expos in Baltimore County, Howard County and Montgomery County, Md., and in Fairfax County, Va.
While there is a modest fee of $10 for each entry, entering will entitle you to a one-year membership in the Maryland Federation of Art (new members only; value: $70).
Among other things, that membership will enable you to set up your own portfolio on their website. There you can upload your bio and images of up to 20 artworks or poems, and share the link with family, friends and the community.
Entries will remain archived on the site, and will be visible to the general public once winners are announced. You may also offer your works for sale through the website!
Community partners, including dozens of area nonprofits and governmental entities, are helping spread the word about the Celebration throughout the region.
Corporate sponsors include AARP, Pepco, Sommerset Retirement Community, Vantage House and Brooke Grove Retirement Village. Communities and businesses wishing to become sponsors or community partners may call the Beacon at (301) 949-9766.
I think this contest is well named. There is so much to celebrate when people try something new later in life and discover a new passion. We’re very excited about our Celebration of the Arts, and look forward to seeing the works of hundreds of our readers entered in the competition. Including yours!