Frequently Asked Questions

Application Fee
What is the application fee?

Confidentiality, Privacy and Copyright
Do I retain the rights to my work?
Will my application materials be made public?

Disciplines
Are artists who work in multiple disciplines eligible to apply?
I’m a parent artist, but my work isn’t about my kids. Is it OK to apply?
What disciplines do you support?

Eligibility
Are applicants who are pregnant, but do not yet have a child, eligible to apply?
Are artists living in other countries 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 (over 18) with special needs. Am I eligible?
My child just turned 18. Can I still apply?

Essays
Can my name appear on my essay responses?
How long should responses to the essay questions be (Biography, Artist Statement, Future Plans)?

Portfolio
Can I apply with translated work?
Can I just link to my website to show you my portfolio?
Is it a requirement that my work has been previously published or exhibited?

Racial Equity
How did you come up with the categories you’re using on your application?
How is racial identity used in your selection process?
Why are you factoring race into your decisions?

Re-Applying
Can I re-apply if I’ve applied in the past?

Recent Work
Your guidelines ask for “recent work.” What does that mean exactly?


Application Fee

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.

Disciplines

Are artists 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 artists 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.

I’m a parent artist, 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.

Eligibility

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 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.
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)

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 (over 18) with special needs. Am I eligible?
While we recognize that parents raising adult children with special needs face many of the same -- and often more -- challenges and demands than parents of younger children, our program was created with specific eligibility guidelines that required IRS approval. We are unfortunately unable to bend these rules. We do hope to be able to make a modification to these guidelines in the future.
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.

Essays

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.

Portfolio

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
The sole exception is that we do accept work originally written by the applicant in another language, and translated into English by the applicant him/herself. Given that we are only able to review in English, we can't recommend submitting translated work unless you are fluent in English.
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.

Racial Equity

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.

Re-Applying

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.

Recent Work

Your guidelines ask for “recent work.” What does that mean exactly?
For your portfolio submission, please supply work created since becoming a parent and within the last 3 years.