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Anybody have any experience submitting photography pieces to galleries? Is it worth it? Do you make any worthwhile amount of money from it? Any tips to someone thinking about trying to get their work into a gallery?
bump for interest
I used to work at a art gallery. Yes, you can make some money, a few meetings with the curators, and they should tell you how your artwork is worth.
be ready to spend some money before earn something, some galleries asks for month fees, you'll need to print your work and get it ready for sells or to expositions (some cases you don't), and of course, have contact with people who are already in the market.

nothing new I guess
I am a practicing artist who shows in galleries regularly. It takes a while to establish yourself and you usually start of exhibiting in lower level shows like artist run spaces to build a reputation for yourself. Dealers usually seek you out, not the other way around. Turning up to a gallery with your portfolio under your arm is considered a noob thing to do. Also you need an underlying theme to your work that you are exploring not just a random collection of shots.
>Anybody have any experience submitting photography pieces to galleries?
Yes. I show regularly and have representation.

>Is it worth it?
If you are trying to make money almost assuredly no.

>Do you make any worthwhile amount of money from it?
I make money from it but I wouldn't call it worthwhile.

>Any tips to someone thinking about trying to get their work into a gallery?
More than quality of work knowing people and actively participating in a community will get your work shown. The best way to get into a show is to be invited into one. If people are familiar with you and your work they will often invite you to show your work if it is suitable planned exhibition. Often more important than your work fitting in with the shows intent is: Are you not an asshole, are you reliable, and are you easy to work with. I've seen plenty of artists not get invited into shows because they are miserable to work with. Similarly I've seen shows fall apart because other artists will bail on it if they find out that one dick bag is in it. Also consider why you want to show. A good gallery will ask this and you will want to have solid answer other than I want to sell work.
There is a difference between getting into shows and getting into a gallery. A lot spaces will do group shows in which you can get a piece or two shown. Getting into these kind of shows is fairly easy. Getting a gallery to represent you is more difficult. When a gallery represents you they usually maintain an inventory of your work and will do a show featuring you every 1-2 years.

Not all galleries operate like this. You can very roughly put galleries into three camps, traditional commercial, co-op commercial, and not for profit. The traditional commercial are what people typically think of when talking about galleries and are as described earlier. Co-op spaces are usually ran by handful of artists. The gallery will show their work in turn or all at once salon style. Artists will work the gallery and run it like a typical shop. Not for profits run spaces that are uninterested in selling but put on shows for sake of art.
OP here, where do I look for smaller art shows I can get into? I've got some friends around where I live (small state college town) who run shows out of their house occasionally, is this what you guys mean? Or do galleries run these kinds of things too?
A lot of smaller spaces have an application process to book shows. There may be a fee to rent the space at artist run spaces. Start hanging out at the local artschool and build your contacts. It is all about who you know and who knows you in the art world. Also be prepared to shell out a shit load of money for frames. My advive if you are a photographer is to buy a good set of 10 frames from a proper art framing place (nothing says amateur more than cheap frames). Work in the same size for all your work (16 by 20 etc.) so you can swap out the photos into the frames anytime you get an exhibition.
Also, research Artist Statements. Write a good artist statement about your work as most galleries will require one, also you will need it for applications to artist run spaces.
What makes an artist easy or difficult to work with? I imagine it has to do with how business-savvy they are? What are things you do to participate in the community?

I just started working at a theater that's opening soon; there's going to be plays, music shows, art shows. I've seen actors come in already to talk with the owner and it sounds like they're always on the go, reading scripts, rehearsing, visiting shows, making plans and are very much "in the loop". Seems overwhelming though I'm not sure how much of a parallel there is with photography.
Depending on where you are there should be a city and or state art council. I would start there. Usually there are arts organizations that will put on free or low cost programming for emerging artists. If you are serious enough about it and in the plains take a look into a program called Artists Inc.

There's also a website called CAFE which stands for Call For Art Entry. Galleries and similar institutions post calls for art usually for a fee of 35-40$. The vast majority of these are little better than scams. The larger the scope of the call for art the more of a scam it is. Ones with much smaller scopes can be an easy way to get a few show resume lines. Look for ones that fit your work well and are precise. For instance I used to enter etymology call for arts but ignore landscape ones.

Sometimes they're just a shitty person. Artists who respond quickly to communications and get materials in on time are preferred. Also quality of presentation. Artists whose work is good but comes in a 10$ hobby lobby poster frame are pretty frustrating.

In terms of participation there's a lot to be said about being a warm body or even a talkative one at openings, artist talks, and similar events. Joining critique groups and other discussion centers is good as well helping other artists when needed. Basically show up to stuff and talk to people.
this is a stupid question, but where should I look to get high quality printing and framing done? Are there stores dedicated to doing just that? I've never printed my photos before. Just last night though I took your guys' advice and might have found an art show to get into in my college town.

Same question, but I want to go a different route. What's a good inkjet printer, and where can I get a good laminater?
Preferably something that I can print 16"x20" or something. I know this isn't /r/equests, so I'm sorry if I come across too pushy
Be aware that galleries will charge at least 30-50% commission. Also photographic prints in 2008+10 are instagram tier shit in an expensive frame.

A shitty acrylic painting on board has some worth (like OP image). Rich men (or their spouse) will pay for "something" without knowing what it actually is. Poor intellectuals will just bitch and whine.

A poor begger that can actually play a musical instrument will make much more money than a programmer on soundcloud. Don't get me wrong photography is 100% valid but getting someone to put their hand in their pocket is another thing. ;^)
For framing you could ask around and find out who is trusted in the area. Michael's and Hobby Lobby are your big box choices. I would avoid Michael's and use Hobby Lobby. Their employees tend to stay longer which means they are better at it. Also while they use the same framing materials (honestly even the high end places will use the same stuff though a bit differently) they use different frames. Generally the ones Hobby Lobby sells are of a higher quality.

I worked in framing for seven years so I do my own. Something common among photographers is to buy some frames and reuse them. You would want to take workshop or read up thoroughly on framing if you go that route. Dry-mounting will come up as a topic. Since it is your own work I would recommend mounting it. Plenty of people will argue heatedly about if you should or should not. I mount all of my work aluminum.

If for whatever reason you are really determined to use an online service Frame Bridge does a good job.
Any of the mid tier or better epson or canon photo printers will do go a good, if you know what you are doing. Generally the bigger the ink cartridge the more cost efficient it is. The pixma 9000 or whatever they are called are bit of a scam because the ink cartridges are tiny. Epson p800 is a great starter.

A lot of larger towns will have places where you can pay to use their printer. That is a good option for if you want use a paper that is harder to find with print on demand places. Again though, you will need to know what you are doing. Most print on demand places will print on Epson Premium Luster. This is a solid standard paper that handles everything at least okay. If you want something that is more of an object look at a platine or baryta paper. I am not a fan of matte papers for most work. General Graphics Alameda is a great printer to work with. I would avoid Bay Photo. People tell me that they have gotten better but I had an experience with them that was poor enough that I am still somewhat sore about it 11 years later.

Laminating work is frowned upon but if you really want to I would get a heat drymount press and do it that way. Drytac makes some pretty solid laminates. You can also spray or pour varnish some inkjet papers. Do a test first though, some will run quite badly when varnished. Varnishing some types of darkroom prints is actually encouraged though it has fallen out of style. Something that is becoming more accepted is to mount plexi to the front of the image but this is fussy enough I would pay someone else to do it.

Thank you, bro

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