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Santa Barbara Arts and Crafts Show

Santa Barbara Arts and Crafts Show


Is It Art?


As a painter in the Santa Barbara Arts and Crafts show since 1993, I remember questioning way back then why painters weren’t allowed to produce and sell prints of their paintings. Every other show I’ve ever attended allowed them. Now that we’ve been in the digital age for well over 10 years, this outdated rule from 1965, when the show first began, makes no sense or fairness to us painters.

Back when photographers made their own prints in the darkroom, and artists did not have a way of producing their own quality prints, the rule was perhaps valid. Today, only a tiny minority of photographers are actually in the darkroom. The vast majority use digital methods; they are mass-producing their images for sale. Yet we painters, who are just as capable of producing high-quality digital prints, are not allowed to do this.

It makes no sense that a photograph of anything can be reproduced and sold over and over again and even printed on canvas, yet a photo of a painting has to be manipulated using digital software to the point that it hardly looks like the original in order for it to be allowed as an “original print.” Basically, we have to bastardize a good painting in order to make it acceptable and it can only be sold once.

This is not only a double standard but it is corrupt and needs to be a changed. We have a majority on our side at the art show and encourage your support.

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