How to Enter Your Art...

The New England Watercolor Society uses Smarter Entry for most show submissions. Once logged into Smarter Entry, please select the show you are submitting to from the list of available competitions. (Please note that you may not be eligible to submit to some competitions in the list.)


If you are new to Smarter Entry, here are a few tips:
  • Unlike many submission services, when submitting through Smarter Entry, you pay for your entries first. A submitting artist purchases entry credits for a particular show (called a competition by Smarter Entry). He or she then uses the credits to submit his/her entry or entries.

  • Where applicable, member discounts are given with a promo code. The promo code is emailed to all current members (included in every member email promoting a biennial show). It must be entered in the Promo Code field when paying for entries to be applied. Member discounts are usually available for biennial shows only (not for NEWS Gallery shows or the Signature Member Show).

  • Photos of submitted paintings should be sharp and well-lit. Your success depends as much on the quality of the submitted photo as it does on the quality of the art.
    • Don't photograph your painting behind glass.
    • Don't include mat or frame in your photo.
    • Make sure the lighting is as uniform as possible - photographing outdoors on a bright overcast day works well.
    • If you can, crop and straighten your photo.

  • When submitting entry details about your painting, dimensions listed must be framed dimensions, measured to the OUTSIDE OF FRAME.
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The New England Watercolor Society primarily embraces traditional watermedia materials and practices.
In view of the ever-broadening definition of the term "aqua media," we have developed the following framework of guidelines for our shows.

Eligibility Rules

No work copied from copywritten material, i.e. image from a card or calendar, and no work using other people’s photo references -- even with permission.
No work partially or wholly painted by another.
No work done in a workshop.
All work must be for sale at the price originally stated on the entry form.
Work must be the same work represented by the submitted digital images.
No altered digital images may be submitted, artwork should be well represented by the image submitted.
Work must be the size represented in the submission form.

The New England Regional Open Show, North American Open Show and Signature Members Show will all have a separate prospectus with size restrictions as well as other requirements specific to those shows. For all shows at the New England Watercolor Society Gallery at the Plymouth Center for the Arts in Plymouth, please refer to this prospectus for a complete schedule of shows, rules, and size requirements -- available HERE.

In particular, the size restriction of no more than 30 inches in width, including the outside dimensions of the frame.
This is a requirement for all New England Watercolor Society Gallery shows, unless otherwise noted.

Acceptable surfaces: Watercolor paper; toned watercolor paper; Yupo and similar synthetic papers; paper coated with water‐based varnish and gesso; textured paper; illustration board; watercolor board; rice paper

Unacceptable surfaces: Composite paper with embedded materials; wood or composite panels; gallery wrapped or stretched canvas; canvas paper; Duralar; Aquaboard, Clayboard or other coated wood or composite panel; unmounted canvas or other fabrics; Tyvec; metal; glass

Media and Mediums
Acceptable mediums: Watercolor; gouache; acrylic; acrylic mediums and watercolor mediums; water-based ink; casein; egg tempera

Acceptable media up to 20%: line & wash; watercolor pencils; collage (waterbased, on or of paper); charcoal; graphite; wax accents and resists; waterbased monotypes and mono prints; embossing; metallic waterbased paint; waterbased iridescent paints or powders (not glitter)

Unacceptable media: Pastels; colored pencil other than watercolor pencil; impasto (thickly applied) acrylic and watermedia; fabrics; digital media or digitally enhanced images; multiple edition prints; sand; glitter; gold or metal leaf; collage from printed materials, newspaper, magazines, etc.; water‐miscible oil paints; photography; reproductions

Framing and Presentation
Work must be presented in a professional manner. No broken or damaged frames. Work must be framed in a rectangular frame with the bottom edge square to the floor. Work must be glazed under Plexiglas or similar clear acrylic surface. No glass. No unglazed work accepted. Work may be floated within the frame, or presented with a single or double mat of not less than 2 inches all around. White or off white mats only, liner mat less than 3/8" may be colored. Work must be wired with no wire or hanger showing when hung. No tooth hangers. Frames, Plexi and mat must be clean and in excellent shape!

Exhibition History
Work must not have been exhibited in a previous New England Watercolor Society Show. Work should have been completed within previous 10 years unless stricter age limit is specified in the show prospectus. Other restrictions may apply - see prospectus for the show you are submitting to.