Frequently Asked QuestionsApplication Fee
What is the application fee?
Are artists/writers who work in multiple disciplines eligible to apply?
Can I submit video?
I’m a parent, but my work isn’t about my kids. Is it OK to apply?
What disciplines do you support?
Are applicants who are pregnant, but do not yet have a child, eligible to apply?
Are artists/writers living in other countries eligible to apply?
Are previous awardees eligible to apply?
Can collaborators apply together?
I am a grandparent who looks after her grandchild/ren. Am I eligible?
I have an adult child (18 and older) with special needs. Am I eligible?
My child just turned 18. Can I still apply?
Who is on your jury?
Can I re-apply if I’ve applied in the past?
- What is the application fee?
- Our application fee is $20. 100% of this fee goes to our jurors, who are all parent artists and writers themselves. Charging this fee insures that at least two jurors will review each application and be compensated for their work.
Our fee is a modest one, but we’re aware that you may be applying for many awards and grants and these costs can add up. Please contact us if you need assistance with the fee, or if you would like to contribute to a fund to cover other applicants’ fees.
Confidentiality, Privacy and Copyright
- Do I retain the rights to my work?
- Absolutely. All applicants retain complete rights to their work. We make no claim of ownership to your submitted work.
- Will my application materials be made public?
- No. We take confidentiality very seriously. The only people that will see your application materials are the jurors who have been assigned to review them. These jurors are parent artists and writers themselves with a built-in empathy towards the needs (confidentiality and privacy among others) of their fellow artists and writers. No submitted content will be copied or disseminated in any form. The sole exception is that we will, with permission, share samples of award winners' work on our website.
- Are artists/writers who work in multiple disciplines eligible to apply?
- We don't recommend applying with multiple genres in a single application, as it's hard to demonstrate excellence with half the page or image count of an application focusing on a single genre.
We generally encourage artists and writers to submit a single application. We do allow applicants who work in multiple disciplines to submit multiple applications, but in our experience it's rare for individuals to be producing award-level work in more than one discipline.
We advise applicants to submit their very strongest work.
- Can I submit video?
- We do not currently support applications in video, film, or other time-based work. Installation artists may include a link to video documentation, not to exceed 5 minutes, of an installation.
- I’m a parent, but my work isn’t about my kids. Is it OK to apply?
- Yes! Please take a look at our past award winners to see the varied subject matter which inspires their art.
Using your children as your subject can be challenging, and is not always successful. On the one hand, one’s children are accessible and familiar; they can be uninhibited and provide lots of material. However, it is difficult not to succumb to the cuteness factor, and to move beyond cliché in order to create an original and thought-provoking work.
Portfolios of writing or artwork created in a more personal vein for sharing with friends and family are not suitable.
- What disciplines do you support?
- Please refer to the Portfolio Requirements page for the full list of disciplines we support, and guidelines for assembling your portfolio.
- Are applicants who are pregnant, but do not yet have a child, eligible to apply?
- First of all, congratulations! However, you really need to have an “outside baby” to apply. The spirit of our award is to acknowledge the struggle of continuing one’s creative work while raising a child. This is not meant to diminish anyone else’s struggle, nor to suggest that pregnancy itself doesn’t impact one’s ability to work or focus. Applicants who are expecting should apply after the baby has arrived and inspired all sorts of new and exciting work!
- Are artists/writers living in other countries eligible to apply?
- Yes. We have no geographic restrictions on our applicants. This applies both to U.S. citizens living abroad as well as to citizens of other countries.
- Are previous awardees eligible to apply?
- In the interest of supporting as broad and diverse a group of parent artists and writers as possible, we will not accept applications from previous awardees.
- Can collaborators apply together?
- The answer is a qualified yes. To apply as collaborators:
- the entire submitted portfolio must be work created jointly
- both collaborators must meet our eligibility guidelines: at least one dependent child under the age of 18 (or an older child with a disability or special needs)
Should you meet these requirements and decide to move forward with an application, please use the contact information for just one person, note that you are applying as a collaborator, and note your collaborator's name in the appropriate fields.
Collaborators should submit a jointly-written artist statement and plan for future work; you may submit individual biographies.
- I am a grandparent who looks after her grandchild/ren. Am I eligible?
- While we recognize that grandparents raising or helping to raise grandchildren face many of the same challenges and demands as parents, our program was created with specific eligibility guidelines requiring IRS approval. We are unfortunately unable to bend these rules.
If you are a documented legal guardian or custodian of your grandchildren, you may apply, although we recommend contacting us first for confirmation of your situation.
- I have an adult child (18 and older) with special needs. Am I eligible?
- Yes! We recognize that parents caring for adult children who are unable to live independently face many of the same challenges as—if not more than—parents of younger children, and we are pleased to make our individual award program open to them.
Anyone with a child 18 and over, for whom they provide care due to the child’s chronic illness, disability, or special needs, is eligible to apply. We don’t want to burden our applicants with excessive paperwork, but should a parent of an dependent adult child be selected for an award, we will ask for documentation of that child’s dependent status, via a tax form, SSI/SSDI documentation, proof of conservatorship, or some combination thereof. If you have any questions about your eligibility, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
- My child just turned 18. Can I still apply?
- No. The only eligibility requirement for this program is that applicants have at least one child under the age of 18. Parents of older children with a disability or special needs may also be eligible.
- Can my name appear on my essay responses?
- No. Please make sure that your name is not on any of your essay responses.
- How long should responses to the essay questions be (Biography, Artist Statement, Future Plans)?
- Typical answers to the essay questions range between a paragraph and two pages (100-500 words). Please do not exceed 500 words.
- Who is on your jury?
- Our jury is comprised of previous SAF awardees and finalists, who are all parent artists and writers themselves. The exact makeup of our jury changes from year to year.
- Can I apply with translated work?
- Unfortunately, we are not accepting translated works:
- work written by the applicant in another language, but translated by someone else
- work written by someone else in another language, and translated by the applicant
- Can I just link to my website to show you my portfolio?
- No. We believe in the importance of the curatorial process. We want applicants to select the specific works and images that they feel best represent their work. We also strive to keep the majority of our review process anonymous. Applicants may list their website on the application, and we will occasionally view an applicant's site very late in the process to help us understand the breadth of their practice, but only after having evaluated their submitted portfolio.
- Is it a requirement that my work has been previously published or exhibited?
- No. That said, the rigor and critique involved in that process can certainly benefit the portfolio. Portfolios of writing or artwork created in a more personal vein for sharing with friends and family are not suitable.
- How did you come up with the categories you’re using on your application?
- For the past several years, we have been collecting anonymous applicant data via an optional post-application survey. This survey uses the format and questions of the 2010 Census. On our application, we’re using a newer format being proposed for the 2020 Census which we feel captures the information we desire in a more natural format.
- How is racial identity used in your selection process?
- Applicants, as always, will be selected on the strength of their submitted portfolios. Information regarding the self-reported racial identity of applicants remains anonymous in the preliminary review stages. For more on our process, please read our article, I Once Was Blind: Acknowledging Race in Granting to Individuals. Race is considered as an additional factor only at the final stage of decision making.
- Why are you factoring race into your decisions?
- Please read our statement on our website for more information about this decision.
- Can I re-apply if I’ve applied in the past?
- Yes. If you re-apply, we do strongly recommend submitting at least some new work.