Free money – a bit of a lottery

by Chantal

So finally heard back about the arts council grant yesterday and it was a disappointing no. I asked for feedback and they said there was nothing wrong with the application (although if I was to resubmit I could strengthen the parts where I explain marketing plans for the associated public workshops) it was basically an issue of competition as they are only able to fund 32% of eligible applicants. I did already know that statistic but in my optimistic way had thought I’d be fine anyway and had started daydreaming how I was going to spend all that lovely luscious lottery money. I found it really frustrating that I’d invested so much time on the application when that is the one thing I have little of and could have spent it in the studio. I guess thats the gamble you take with funding.

Yesterday I was properly gutted but a nights sleep has put perspective on it and the truth is that not having the grant won’t mean my exhibition will miss out anything fundamental. There would have been extra trimmings and its true I will have to stump up more cash myself for essentials and change some plans but nothing that is going to affect how the work itself looks and thats kinda the point. The largest part of the budget was allocated to getting 200 catalogues being printed which would have been free to all visitors. After some advice from a smart friend I’m now thinking of getting one nice catalogue reference book printed by blurb or iphoto book that will stay in the gallery space for people to refer to (people could have the option of ordering a copy if they wanted too) and then just have simple cards to take away that refer them to my wedbsite and blog. The custom sized plinths I was planning on ordering were pretty pricey too but I may use my shiny new tool kit to attempt to build some myself – how hard can that be? πŸ™‚

On the plus side – to fulfil the grants “engaging with the public” requirements I was going to have to organise family hands on work shops which I now won’t so I guess I’ll be reclaiming some studio time there!