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2013 Portfolio Reviewers

(Click on reviewer names for individual bios.)

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Mary Virginia Swanson describes the value of portfolio reviews on her website:

Q: Do I think attending a portfolio review event has value?
MVS: Absolutely.

Q: Will each and every photographer benefit from sharing their work at these events, no matter how resolved their body of work is at that time?
MVS: Yes. Reviewers can provide creative guidance for works in progress, as well as marketing advice for completed projects.

Q: Can participating in these events help move your career to the next level?
MVS: Without question. But to do so effectively you must continue the dialogue you have started at the event.

Q: Will every single appointment be a match made in heaven?
MVS: No, but responsible Reviewers will find much to share with you about your work, regardless of whether it fits their gallery, their collection, their publication program, and know too that you can ask them questions about their industry, from market trends to pricing and editioning to whom they might suggest would be interested in your project.
From my perspective, there are three main reasons you should bring your work to a portfolio review event:

  1. First: The process of applying and preparing to attend is a valuable experience.Writing about your work, editing your work for a 20-minute reviews session, and preparing a printed piece or CD-Rom sample with your imagery to share with others attending are activities that in themselves will lend clarity to your work.
  2. Second: presenting your work to industry professionals and peers alike. This is an experience that can’t be matched. The standard model is a 20 minute session with each Reviewer; the number of sessions you have dependes on the length of the event. The number of times you will share your work goes beyond these formal sessions as you will share work with other photographers too. Through having a dialogue about your work your clarity about and commitment to your bodies of work, your presentation to your target audience, your explorations toward desired final print(s) and in what format to display the work – all this and more comes from attending a portfolio review event.
  3. Third: Beginning relationships. Portfolio review events provide an opportunity for you to to share your work and ideas with your peers and industry professionals, be it discussing craft or intention/audience that you devote your twenty minutes session to. It is of course your responsibility to follow up with those Reviewers who encourage you to keep them posted on the evolution of your project.

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