Submission Rules

Once submission for an exhibit close, all entries are submitted to the Juror for that exhibit anonymously. The juror will not know the name of the photographer or if two photos were taken by the same photographer. Jurors are charged with selecting about 45 entries for display in the Darkroom Gallery, in Essex Jct. Vermont. Jurors have sole discretion as to their selections. Please do not attempt to contact jurors to influence their choices. Doing so will disqualify your entry. Our goal is to announce the selected entries for each exhibit within seven days of the submission close date. This will be by email and on the Darkroom Gallery web site.


In your selection notification you will receive Check-in instructions for your work. This is done on-line and will tell us what you are sending, allow you to amend your title, provide a 250 character description that will appear on your gallery label and in the exhibit catalog and set a price for your work.  You will be able to specify the selling price or the net you will receive from a sale with the other being calculated for you.


All prints or framed work must arrive, generally, 10 days after selection notification. An exact schedule is posted on each exhibit page. Please use packaging that can be reused for return shipping. Our goal with each exhibit at the gallery is to have some consistency of presentation even though many different artists will be displayed. All selected works must be submitted on paper conformed to fit one of the preestablished matt/frame sizes unless you decide to send already matted or framed work. We use black metal frames, conservation (UV filtering) anti reflective glass and rag mats which are naturally archival quality. Remember to allow for 1/4" crop for the cover mat. If your paper is larger then the sizes listed below we may cut it to fit.  Frame and mat size options are:

Configuration Frame Size (Inches) Mat Opening Size (Inches) Minimum Actual Print Paper Size (Inches)  
A 16x20 10.5x13.5 11x14 For Standard 11 x 14 Print Size
B 16x20 9.5x13.5 10x14 For Even 3" mat Borders
C 11x14 7.5x9.5 8x10 For Standard 8 x 10 Print
D 11x14 6.5x9,5 7x10 For Even 2" mat Borders
E 16x16 10.5x10.5 11x11 For Even 2.5 Inch mat Border
F 18x24 11.5x17.5 12x18 1.5 aspect ratio configuration

Print Service

Note to distant photographers: We welcome your entries! To avoid slow mailing problems for accepted images, Darkroom Gallery can print your image for $25.00 USD for the first print and $15 for additional ones. We will then send your photographic print to you after the exhibit at no additional charge withon the US. We print on Fuji Crystal Archive Paper - this is a chromogenic color print, not an ink jet print. More detail here . . .

We host an Exhibit Opening and Photographer Reception for each exhibit approximately two weeks after exhibit selections are announced.  Photographers are encouraged to attend so they can talk about their work to reception visitors. We are planning a public input mechanism at the reception to select the image that best expresses that exhibit's theme.

Prints will be returned provided a return prepaid label is provided, but photographers also have the option of leaving their prints in the Gallery after the exhibit.  We will place all prints into a portfolio book, tagged with photographer information and offer them for sale at photographer set prices with the Gallery retaining 25% of the sale price.

Creating an image that conveys a meaning is as old as mankind. The tools change but the drive to communicate remains.How do we learn this visual communication thing?  We begin by learning rules.  Rules of composition.  Rules of color.  Rules of values.   Rules of handling materials and equipment.  How do we progress?  We learn from what others have achieved.  If someone else has produced works that we admire, we look at them with an analytical eye.  Was this rule followed here?  Was that rule bent there?  Did it work?  Sometimes we  follow what they publish.

Entering a Juried Exhibition is part of an artist’s education.  You feel ready to be judged by a standard of excellence.   It is not for those who are still overly emotionally attached to their “babies”.  It is for artists who believe they possess sufficient analytical  expertise to meet the challenge with a good image.  If the Juror thinks otherwise, those artists can maturely continue striving to improve.  It may have been a fine image – as a piece of music can be technically correct - but did it speak to this particular expert?  Carefully review the body of the Juror's work, which you can access online.  Ask yourself questions about the compositional elements in each image, also reoccurring elements and devices used by this photographer to convey mood or message.  You will begin to understand the elements which are important to this particular expert.  Then review the images that were accepted for the exhibit - analyze those also.  You will then begin to understand, and learn, by all that you've analyzed in the Juror's works, and in the qualities of the accepted works.    Communication is not easy – we continually learn to increase our vocabulary.  As the French say:  “Courage!”   I have known many rejected artists who have gone on to lead productive lives!

On the other hand…Your acceptance by a Juror who is at the top of his or her field is a major achievement in your artistic career. You have addressed a challenge and won!  This success will forever be part of your professional biography.

Those who persevere will go on to produce works that  touch the spirit.

To those that may be submitting for the first time to a juried exhibit - pay attention to basics such as:

  • Composition
  • Tonal Range
  • Framing
  • Background
  • Depth of field
  • there are more

Not getting these right can cause an image who's subject fits the theme beautifully to be excluded.

Here is an article by one of our past jurors, Douglas Beasley, Decisions & Dilemmas: Day in the Life of a Juror It should you understand what a juror goes through.

Michele Roberge
Manager, Maine Art Gallery
March 24, 2010