Good images of your artwork and booth display can make or break it when getting accepted to art festivals. It is strongly recommended that you research the best examples of images submitted by nationally-exhibiting artists to see how they do it.



For artwork images, take the photo of your art against a blank background. This is especially important for jewelers so there is nothing in the background that would distract jurors from seeing your jewelry. If you are a painter, crop the image to the actual edge of the painting. Never include frames. And do not take photos of your painting or photograph when it is already behind glass. The image will have an unfortunate camera glare.


If you work in fine or funky craft, lifestyle photos can be especially interesting as long as they follow the guidelines of how one would shoot a photo for a magazine ad. Make it look enticing!


Artwork images are NOT booth display images. Your artwork images must be just one piece of work for each image.


Check out the example of Armadillo Christmas Bazaar Artist Gallery to see how these artists created their artwork images.



Your booth display image is extremely important! Jurors may be interested in your work, but if it's presented in a poor booth display, your chances of being accepted to the show go way down. Jurors want to see a booth that is clean and professional - like a gallery. If your booth display (or even artwork images) have unrelated items in the shot, jurors will be distracted. And that's something you don't want to happen. Give them the WOW factor, and keep them focused on your work. Here are some tips:


  • DON'T have people in the picture. Keep Aunt Martha out of the shot.

  • DON'T show price tags. (If you have very small ones that you can hardly see in the photo, this shouldn't be a major problem. But for big national shows, this is something you do not want to do.)

  • Jurors DON'T want to see your neighbors, dog, street signs, your car behind your booth, etc. This is your gallery.

  • DO have a few little plants or vase of flowers and a cute rug really warms up the place.

  • DON'T show naked tables with items stored underneath. 

  • DON'T have signs in your booth showing your name. This is especially true in the big shows around the country. You want the jurors to judge you on your work, not on who you are. You never know who the judges are. Maybe you accidentally cut them off in traffic the other day? Oops. Try and keep your images anonymous. However, if you have a uniquely branded sign in interesting materials with your company name that relates to the artwork, then that might be okay. It could be similar to a beautiful storefront sign.

  • DO try to keep things looking clean and perfectly tidy. This is a MUST!

  • DON'T put EVERYTHING you sell in the shot. You just want to give a decent range of the artwork you will be exhibiting so the judges get a good feel for your body of work. Putting everything in the image will just confuse them. They can judge you in 10 seconds. Make those 10 seconds count! Many shows actually have judges walk the show with your booth shots in hand to make sure you are selling what you showed in your application images.

  • TAKE A COUPLE PHOTOS. After you set up your booth display for taking that all-important booth shot, take several photos and CHECK THEM FIRST on your computer. You'd be amazed at what the eye can't see in person but absolutely sees when it's up on the computer screen. Yikes, I have an extension cord showing underneath my panels. Oh, look how that big shadow lays across the painting in front of the booth. Double check your shots before selecting your final one.

  • MOST IMPORTANTLY.... DON'T ignore the prospectus and exhibition rules regarding buy/sell products or molds. You agreed to these rules when submitting your application. So be careful. You'd be surprised at how many applications come in with artists selling the EXACT same products! That's proof there's something fishy going on.

  • Some artists sell really interesting, unique, and funky high-end crafts. In that case, DO show the creativity of your booth design.


Remember, our jurors judge your booth display just as much as your work. Each image is judged at 25% each and scored as a total.


Kate Winternitz GREAT BOOTH EXAMPLE web.

You can see from the above examples some of the things that can make for an effective booth shot:


  • The artists' booths look like an outdoor art gallery.

  • The booth shot is tight and focused on the artist’s display — there is very little of the tent showing.

  • The artwork is nicely displayed and gives a complete impression of the artist’s work —  a true depiction of the artist’s booth rather than a Photoshop constructed rendition.

  • There is no extraneous clutter, signs with names, ribbons, unrelated artwork, people standing in the booth, etc.

bad booth example.JPG

You can see from this example many of the things that are on the DON'T list from above.


  • People in the shot.

  • Other booths in the background.

  • Things look sloppy.

  • Artwork is laying on the ground.

  • There are chairs and flip racks in the photo.

  • There's a sign.

  • A big part of the canopy is showing, and it's crooked.

  • You can't see what's in the booth.

If you take your booth shot at a show, follow all the tips and guidelines and take the photo FIRST before adding all your tables and price tags and whatnot that you will need for the show that day.

Artists should follow many of these display guidelines when at the show too.


Please follow these specifications  in order to attach these images to your application successfully.

  1. Recommended Dimensions: 1920 pixels on the longest side.
    Note: To assist artists who do not have images that are 1920 pixels or larger, the system will also accept images that are at least 1400 pixels on the longest side.

  2. File Format: Save all images as a JPEG.

  3. File Size: Must be under 5 MB in size.

  4. Recommended Resolution: between 100 and 300 dpi
    Note: You may need to lower your resolution if the file size is larger than 5 MB.

  5. Color space: Save images in RGB color space, preferably sRGB.

  6. BE CAREFUL: If your image is smaller than 1400 on the longest size, do not increase the size in your editing software. This will only pixelate your image, making it fuzzy. You may want to take a new photograph if this happens.


Photo Editing Software

You can also use photo editing programs to help you format your images successfully. The options below are some of the most widely used programs or software.

  • Adobe Photoshop (the industry standard photographer’s toolset)

  • Adobe Photoshop Elements (offers fewer tools than the full version, but allows for formatting images at a lower price point). 

  • Mac Users: The application “Preview” can format images to specifications.

  • Online Resources: Sumo, Aviary, and Pixlr are some of the few websites out there that offer image editing right in the browser.





Taking shots with smartphones

The newest smartphones take pretty good photos. Just be sure that you are adhering to the tips for creating good artwork and booth shots as previously discussed.

  • Make sure you put your phone on a tripod if you can. Especially if you have shaky hands.

  • Try using the grid option on your camera so you can judge how straight you are shooting your images - especially helpful for those taking shots of 2D work.

  • CROP your photos so jurors don't see picture frames or all the distractions listed in the DOs and DON'Ts listed above.

  • Take your photos in several different areas of your home, studio, or outdoors. Lighting differences are huge! It can take up to 30 tries to get just the right photo with the lighting that best reflects how your work looks like in real life.

  • Upload your photos to your computer for editing and naming.

  • Make sure you are sending the highest resolution of the photo that your camera can take. Oftentimes you are given 3 resolution options on an iPhone when you email a photo to someone. Bigger is better.

  • Then you're ready to complete the application and upload your images for jurying.


Naming Your Images

Once you have edited your image, name it as follows: [LAST NAME], [medium category i.e. painting], IMAGE [1, 2, 3]. Example: SMITH painting IMAGE 1


Uploading Images of Your Artwork
After you have formatted your images, the next step is to upload them to your application. Follow these steps to upload your images:

  1. Click on the green + Click to Upload button.

  2. Select "Browse" or "Choose File" to locate the image on your computer

  3. Wait for the image to load before uploading the next one. *Images may take a while to upload depending on the file size. If you get an error message, be sure to double check that your image is under 5 MB.