Thank you to everyone who submitted to Spectrum 23!
It’s amazing to have such a great community who supports Spectrum year after year. Some people think that Flesk and Spectrum are mega-big companies, but the reality is that we are a handful of people who work tirelessly out of passion and respect for this genre and the artists who bring us their beauty through art with each day.
It continues to be our humble pleasure to be a part of this community.
Over the next week we will be processing all of the submissions that have come in over this last week. We are sending out email confirmations to those who submitted online. Please be patient, since it may take us a little while, but we prefer to work slow to make sure all of the entries are in order and that you have the best chance to be seen by the jury.
Details about the Spectrum jury event will come soon. Thank you again!
If you are mailing in your entries, as long as the package is postmarked by today you are all set. (There is no need to pay for expedited or overnight shipping.)
Online entries will be accepted until this evening at midnight (PST time zone.)
We will be busy reviewing all of the submission forms and artwork entries all week to make sure everything has been done properly to give you the best chance to be seen by the judges. We’re sending email confirmations all this week. This can take us a while due to the amount of entries that have come in over the weekend.
I’m taking a short break from processing Spectrum 23 submissions to reflect on the judging event held last year. From left to right, we have Justin Gerard, Greg Ruth, Annie Stegg Gerard and Virginie Ropars (plus Dice Tsutsumi) as they narrow in on the nominations for the silver and gold awards for the eight categories for Spectrum 22. They went well into the evening as they shared passionate discussions regarding the merits of each piece. It was a blast to sit in and observe the lively discussion.
I’m looking forward to bringing the jury for Spectrum 23 together on February 27th to review the submissions for the latest annual here in our office located in Santa Cruz, CA. This includes David Palumbo, Cynthia Sheppard, Kirk Thatcher, Charlie Wen and Terryl Whitlatch! You can read more about them by following this link.
I would like to provide a reminder that the Spectrum 23 Call for Entries ends next Monday, January 25th. We don’t accept any works after the deadline. Don’t wait until the last minute!
If you are mailing in your entries, as long as the package is postmarked by the 25th you are all set. (There is no need to pay for expedited or overnight shipping.)
Keith, Josh and I will be here all week to answer questions. Any issues? Just let us know. We are here to help.
We will be busy reviewing all of the submission forms and artwork entries to make sure everything has been done properly to give you the best chance to be seen by the judges. We’re sending email confirmations all this week. This can take us a while since we are easily distracted looking at all of the beautiful works that are coming in!
I’m also arranging the travel plans for our Spectrum 23 jury David Palumbo, Cynthia Sheppard, Kirk Thatcher, Charlie Wen and Terryl Whitlatch to visit our Flesk/Spectrum office in February to review all of the submissions. As with years past, we will be sharing photos and videos during the judging day to keep you updated on the day.
Mark Schultz and I have been talking on the phone over these last few weeks about his new books for 2016. In the works is Carbon 2, the latest home for his collected works to bring us up to date since his last Carbon collection that came out three years ago.
The second collection will be a deluxe edition for Storms at Sea. This will be a very limited oversized edition that will come signed by Mark. I wanted to release it last year, but time was an issue as I was juggling other projects.
Our plan is to offer the Carbon 2 and Storms at Sea deluxe editions as a set through a Kickstarter campaign. I’d like to have the books available in July for our summer season.
At the moment I’m focused on Spectrum 23 submissions and the judging event which will be held on February 27th. The Kickstarter campaign for Schultz’s books will commence at some point to be determined in the near future.
Click here to see all books available on Mark Schultz from Flesk.
With the Call for Entries for Spectrum 23 ending on Monday, January 25th I have written a series of submission tips. You can submit by mail or online! All artworks in all media embracing the themes of science fiction, fantasy, horror and the surreal are eligible. There is no unacceptable way to create art. Imagination and skill are what matters. Work chosen by the jury, including David Palumbo, Cynthia Sheppard, Kirk Thatcher, Charlie Wen and Terryl Whitlatch, will be printed in full color in the Spectrum 23 annual, the peer-selected “best of the year” collection for the fantastic arts.
Is there an advantage to entering my art online or by mail as a print?
The important thing to know right off the bat is that one option does not give you an edge over the other option. Both digital and print submissions get equal attention from the judges and you have an equal chance of getting selected regardless of how you enter.
For Spectrum 21 and 22, eighty percent of the submissions came in online. Out of curiosity I paid attention to the percentage of art that was selected in both the digital and print areas to see if one had an advantage over the other. They were both right in line with one another. One method did not visibly outweigh the other.
The jury views the digitally submitted art on individual 24″ screens (not projected to the group) and the prints are presented on tables. Each jury member votes anonymously and at his or her own pace. Discussion and grouping is discouraged (with the exception of the awards selections) to keep the selection process fair and truthful. To get into Spectrum you need three or more of the five jury member’s votes. It’s not easy to get in. Historically around eight to nine percent of the submissions make it into the yearly annual.
Spectrum 23 Call for Entries Submissions Tip #2
Give Yourself the Best Chance to be Seen!
Take advantage of the artwork submission guidelines by submitting good quality prints or digital files. We can’t stress this enough. We want everyone to have the best chance to be seen by the jury.
If you are submitting online take advantage of our maximum size at 2000 pixels wide and/or 2000 pixels tall. (JPG file no larger than 10MB.) Each jury member uses his or her own large screen when viewing the artwork. Make sure your art fills the screen so they can take a good look at it! Don’t send in a small postcard sized thumbnail. Take the time to prepare a proper presentation.
For submissions by mail, I recommend sending in a print out of your art no smaller than 8.5″ x 11″ and no larger than 18″ x 24″. I think the best sizes range from 9″ x 12″ to 11″ x 17″. Yes, some people send in massive poster sized images. It’s just too big. Just like art displayed too small can make it hard for the jury members to view, art too big doesn’t necessarily mean you have a better chance. The print submissions are placed out on tables for the jury members to view and vote for individually.
Spectrum 23 Call for Entries Submissions Tip #3
Dimensional Category Allows Three Views!
Anyone submitting to the Dimensional category is allowed to submit up to three views. If you are submitting a sculpture we recommend a full shot from the front, a side view and a back view or detail. We want the jury to see these multiple angles of your work so that they have adequate visual information to base their decisions. This is especially important if your art is considered for an award.
Another tip for this category is our recommendation to get a clear, in focus, quality photographs. Don’t take simple, quick snaps with your phone. If you do not have a good camera then take the extra time to find someone who does, light your piece well and make sure the details are visible in the pictures that you send us.
Spectrum 23 Call for Entries Submissions Tip #4
Does my artwork have to be fantasy related to submit to Spectrum?
Yes: Spectrum’s focus is on “Fantastic Art.” HOWEVER keep in mind that focus covers a sweeping range of possibilities. Fantastic Art can be subtle or obvious, traditional or off-the-wall, painted, sculpted, done digitally or photographed: Fantastic Art chronicles places and peoples and creatures and events that aren’t or never were. Just as there is no unacceptable way to create art, there are no set rules that say one piece qualifies while another does not. Spectrum doesn’t define Fantastic Art: what YOU do and what the JURY selects does. We do not pre-screen submissions and we do not arbitrarily restrict the type of art that is submitted. We make sure every submission is viewed with fairness and an open mind by the jury. We embrace all art works in all mediums embracing the themes of science fiction, fantasy, horror, the surreal, fine art and more. Each type (and types that we may not have even thought of) is eligible for this show.
Spectrum 23 Call for Entries Submissions Tip #5
How do I know that my submission arrived?
We take great care in reviewing the details of every submission that arrives. For online entries we check your online form and artwork to make sure your name, the art title and all other relevant details match. Once this is done we send an official email confirmation to notify you that your submission has been accepted. For submissions that arrive as prints in the mail, once you see that your payment has been processed you can rest assured that we have processed your submissions.
If we have any questions or if any art is missing we will contact you by email or by phone. We take great care in making sure all submissions look their best for the jury.
Spectrum 23 Call for Entries Submissions Tip #6
What is the #1 mistake people make when submitting online?
Not labeling their art when posting it. A small percentage of people do not include their name or art title when uploading their art. In this case we send an email asking for clarification or new art files properly labeled. Please label your art by first and last name followed by the art title!
Spectrum 23 Call for Entries Submissions Tip #7
Can I submit fan art relating to Star Wars, Marvel or DC characters or my favorite super-hero or pop culture character?
Not unless you have the express permission from the copyright or license holder. We respect the artists copyrights and the companies copyrights. You can not submit works of art that infringe on the rights of someone else.
Spectrum 23 Call for Entries Submissions Tip #8
Don’t wait until the last minute!
Each year we get people contacting us the day after the deadline who had some sort of an issue or question that prevented them from submitting late in the night in the final hours. Don’t wait until the last day to submit, just to be safe, and to have an extra day built in if you have an issue.
We do not accept submissions after the deadline. There are no exceptions. The submissions deadline is Monday, January 25th at 11:59 PM PST.