The "Exposure" Carrot | Art Watch | Bend | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon

Coverage for Central Oregon, by Central Oregonians.
100% Local. No Paywalls.

Every day, the Source publishes a mix of locally reported stories on our website, keeping you up to date on developments in news, food, music and the arts. We’re committed to covering this city where we live, this city that we love, and we hear regularly from readers who appreciate our ability to put breaking news in context.

The Source has been a free publication for its 22 years. It has been free as a print version and continued that way when we began to publish online, on social media and through our newsletters.

But, as most of our readers know, times are different for local journalism. Tech giants are hoovering up small businesses and small-business advertising—which has been the staple for locally owned media. Without these resources, journalism struggles to bring coverage of community news, arts and entertainment that social media cannot deliver.

Please consider becoming a supporter of locally owned journalism through our Source Insider program. Learn more about our program’s benefits by clicking through today.

Support Us Here

Culture » Art Watch

The "Exposure" Carrot

How to NOT ask artists for things

by

2 comments

It's the third week of the new year and yesterday I opened my third email asking for a donation of my art for a fundraiser. That means, if I keep at this pace, I should expect 49 more emails in the coming year.

Recently, a young artist in Bend was telling me, very excitedly, that his performance troupe had been hired for a corporate holiday party, and how awesome he thought that was. I agreed, but then again, I've gone to corporate parties where MC Hammer was the entertainment, so I think it should be expected. His face lit up when he talked about it—the same light you see in an artist's face when they're inspired. This time, he was inspired by someone respecting his craft and the work he and his troupe have put into perfecting it.

That feeling is the exact opposite feeling artists get when receiving an email that reads something like this: "We saw your work and were so impressed by it, we would love for you to give it to us so we can use it to make money for our cause. It would be great exposure for you." First, I'm not sure I need exposure, because, well, you found me.

Secondly, artists already give in huge ways. Artists make the posters for the fundraisers for free, or in exchange for a ticket. Artists make the logos for noprofits at a reduced cost or for free in exchange for tax credits. We design the t-shirts for the causes that we believe in and that we volunteer our time for. Artists often create community art projects that we joyfully give for you to participate in and engage with, that help to put language to issues we're working on in this community and beyond.

There is an old adage that says, "It never hurts to ask." I strongly disagree with this. It hurts artists to be asked, again and again, to give more and more and more. The asking is defeating and deflating—a constant reminder that people don't know how to engage or appreciate what artists already do. And I know that's not the intention, so let's just do away with this whole game in 2018.

To help with this issue that artists seem to endlessly face, I've made a flow chart. It's not that artists don't want to give to our community. The thing is, we already do. A lot.

One more question: Does your fundraiser help the arts and artists in this town? Does it provide opportunities for artists or help to create audiences for us to better be seen and heard? Does it make artists' existence here, and their role in this community, stronger and better? If the answer is yes, hit me up. I got some stuff for you.


About The Author

Teafly Peterson

For the last 20 years, I have been working as an artist and an educator. Some days I am better at one than the other. The good days are when I am excellent at both simultaneously. I love those days. I teach a variety of mediums– painting, drawing, photography, writing, film making. Mostly what I teach is how to...

Speaking of Teafly Peterson,

Comments (2)

Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment
 

Add a comment

More by Teafly Peterson