Vanessa Montenegro is a local Tampa Bay artist who participates in many art shows a year and her work is display in several private collections and public art. She has a studio in Westchase, where she creates her artwork, works on commissioned portraits and teaches art.
Here's what Vanessa had to say about the show, her process and selections:
"Although rewarding, being a juror of an art show is extraordinarily challenging. You are asked to make a very subjective choice, with a very limited amount of time, on a diverse range of media and styles. It is a highly unscientific process, and there is no perfect guide on how to judge an art piece. Ultimately, it comes down to the judge’s knowledge and experience, including an understanding of composition and design; an appreciation of a wide range of styles and media; a good eye for images that manage to connect with the observer; and our own a personal taste.
For the “Faces and Figures Show,” my job was to judge for the first, second, and third place awards, as well as the merit and honorable mentions, with only one award per artist. The show has a wide variety of artwork from the very realistic to the experimental to the quite edgy.
I found the medium of oils, acrylics, and watercolors to be well represented and aesthetically strong. It was extremely challenging for me to narrow down my selections. This is a testament to the quality and creativity of the work that was submitted. There was an abundance of pieces that merited an award, but in the end, I simply ran out of awards. Thank you for showing such outstanding talent.
Standing in front of each piece, I looked carefully at every submission, sometimes several times. So, how did I narrow it down? There are several elements and factors that I took into consideration.
First, I looked at the craftsmanship, technical skill, presentation, and creativity. Is the piece well executed?
Second, I considered the use of color and how the light is captured, as well as its composition, subject matter and medium. Does it convey a mood or message?
Third, I looked at the whole presentation. Has the artist pushed boundaries, broken rules, taken risks or tried something different? Does the piece resonate in some way with me? Does it invite me to explore it further? Does the title hint to the story behind the piece? Has the artist created a style that is markedly his or her own? Would I like to see more work by the artist?