Advice for that Day
Plan your time appropriately
Please arrive 10 minutes early. It takes a few minutes to check in, and you will want a few minutes to orient yourself before your first appointment. Additionally, you don't have to limit yourself to just 3 schools. Many of the schools will be taking walk-up interviews, and we encourage you to speak with as many different schools as possible. The more feedback you get, the stronger your portfolio can eventually be. Plan to stay for an hour or two so you can talk to several additional representatives.
Dress for Success
The clothes you wear give your first impression to the school representatives. That being the case, you’ll want to dress professionally. Some of you may wonder what that really means. For the guys, you should wear nice slacks and a clean dress shirt. Girls, a skirt or dress pants with a nice shirt will do. Keep it simple, while you want to show your personality and style, you don’t want to go overboard. Your hair should be neat and clean. Try to keep it out of your face. And ladies, keep your makeup simple; natural colors are best. Now that you’re looking presentable, be sure to sit up straight and be attentive. When you slouch you look bored. You’re intelligent and talented, so make sure the school representatives see that.
The purpose of a portfolio is to show the School’s Art Representatives a sample of your current work. Include your best and most recent works. Unless it’s a sketch book, include only finished artwork. A good portfolio should have continuity and provide viewers with a clear idea as to what your vision is. It should be organized by subjects or different styles. You will be asked to explain your work. Think carefully about each piece you include in your portfolio so that you are prepared to answer questions about your process, inspiration, and goals.
If there are schools you are specifically interested in attending, do some research beforehand. What questions do you have? This is your chance to get answers directly from professors, students, or admissions reps from these schools.
Don't get Discouraged
This is only one step in the process of becoming a professional artist. You will get lots of feedback at this event; it is up to you to choose what advice you will follow and what advice you will disregard. Be aware that schools will not be offering on-the-spot scholarships to attendees. These interviews can help you, however, to connect with people who you might be working with in college programs, and who may have an influential voice on scholarship decision committees down the road.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are they looking for in me as an artist?
“Have an idea of where you want to go with your work
-Morgan Nelson, Hein Academy of Art
“Show us work that represents who you are as an artist, and not work that your teachers guided.
-Jessica Curran, Salt Lake Community College
“The ability to self-edit and be critical of ones work. Being able to speak about the ideas behind the work are key. I don't want to hear 'My teacher assigned me to do this...' I want to hear why they were intrigued by the idea, and about what made it important to them."
-Jeffrey Hanson, Southern Utah University
What should I include in my portfolio?
“Bring only your best and highest quality work. Only high quality reproductions if you do not bring originals
-Adam Larsen, Snow College
“Sketchbooks! Professors love to see the thinking process
-Danielle Tolman, Snow College
“Present more original work. References are okay, but only if I see a student activity seeking to study
-Katie Liddiard, Center for Academic Study
“Passion and determined effort.
-Ryan Brown, Center for Academic Study
“I want to see more drawings from life and a personal area of focus.
-Peter Everett, Brigham Young University
“Diverse in genres (i.e. not just portraits). Experimentation
-Amanda Beardsley, University of Utah
"Examples of individual artistic style, vision, and concepts.
-Justin Kunz, Brigham Young University
"Life drawings, commercial art, photography, film/video animation
-Zac Elliott, Art Institute of Salt Lake City
How much of my art should I bring?
“I would encourage students to bring only their best work, not work from Jr. High. They should bring 10-15 of their best work not 30 of different quality.
-Trudy Richardson, Salt Lake Community College
“More is not necessarily better
, BYU- Idaho
“We really only need to see a few pieces to see what a student ability is.
-David Belka, BYU- Idaho
“Don’t bring everything. Only bring the best. That may be ten pieces for some students, while others may have about 15.”
-Glen Blakley, Dixie State College
“Quality is more important than quantity. I encourage students to edit their portfolios, realizing that they will be judged on their poorest work as well as their best."
- Arlene Braithwaite, Southern Utah University
How should I present my art?
“A portable portfolio is easier to flip through.
-Scott Allred Snow College
“I liked seeing the sketchbooks several students brought – nicely matted and well-presented portfolio pieces are a joy to review.
-Robert Barrett Brigham Young University
“Presentation, I was very impressed with students that had matted and framed their work. It looks more professional and more put together
-Nadia Morales Westminster College
“Create a digital portfolio on a CD to leave with University Representatives.
-Noel Carmack USU Eastern
Still have questions?
Contact Jessica Weiss at (801)489-2727 (x23).