Joining Open Studios Ayrshire as an Artist or Maker
Applications for new members are now open until 31st March 2024.
What is Open Studios Ayrshire?
Open Studios Ayrshire (OSA) is a non-profit making, artist led, organisation which aims to promote artists and makers in Ayrshire.
Members promote their quality product and working expertise by organising an annual Open Studio Weekend, in 2024 this will be the 13th – 15th September.
Why Join OSA?
Our successful and vibrant organisation is now entering it’s 13th year.
It is constantly progressing and developing and is a great way for artists and makers throughout Ayrshire to promote their work, develop their skills and build support and friendships with other artists and makers.
We are very proud of the positive contribution OSA makes to creative life in Ayrshire.
How to Join
Applications should be made using the form below. Please read the guidance notes before completing the form.
Your application will be considered by a selection committee who will contact you to let you know if you have been successful & details of how to pay your membership fee.
We support a policy of equality and diversity in our membership and welcome applications from all ages and backgrounds.
If you have difficulty completing the application form please contact: email@example.com
New Members pay a £100 subscription fee (plus any banking fees) which enables the organisation to promote the Open Studios Weekend and other events.
As well as a full entry in the website directory, each member has a write up with photographs of their work in a specially produced brochure which is widely distributed in Ayrshire and beyond.
OSA holds an annual exhibition at a leading Ayrshire gallery, such as Maclaurin Gallery, each Spring.
We also run at least 2 Online Exhibitions through the year, and organise promotion activities through our social media channels and email distribution lists.
OSA is organised by its members as a collective. All members are asked to participate in the administration of the organisation through membership of a Facebook working groups. Every full OSA member is asked to participate in our working groups – you will have the option to select which groups you would like to participate in when your application is accepted.
By becoming an online community we have found it easier for members to become more involved, by sharing ideas, and giving support to their fellow artists and makers.
There are also many opportunities throughout the year to meet socially with other artists.
What to expect from OSA: ( Click the plus sign to open )
Annually the OSA art trail attracts a massive public spend of around £40k.
OSA artists meet to support each other and learn from key speakers.
OSA Artists attend an OSA Launch on a date and at a venue to be arranged. This is where you will receive promotional materials including a banner and high quality brochures. Here you will interact with your guests and with the public, helping them plan their art trail.
There may also be further opportunities to exhibit here. This event helps you promote yourself within the OSA art trail before the main event, so there will be lots of photos to add to social media and news articles attracting the interest of art lovers in Ayrshire.
If you don’t have a studio, we have several spaces which can be applied for, however these may incur a shared cost between yourself and other participating artists and some may charge a percentage commission. Some of our OSA artists share a space within a studio. To encourage the development of a personal studio we encourage people without their own space to create works within the venue that they are intending to use during the OSA art trail.
Many of our artists sell very well from their own studio and benefit from return visitors throughout the year.
Some of our artists have exhibited for a number of years and have a wealth of knowledge to share and help your practice grow.
We are also supported in various ways by local councils too, South and East Ayrshire Councils have previously contributed funds and organisation to running a trail bus to rural OSA venues.
What OSA expects from its members: ( Click the plus sign to open )
OSA is run by volunteers, who need you to respond quickly in order to ensure events are organised smoothly.
We would appreciate posts about OSA sent via Facebook being shared with your network. If we all do this the response can be huge.
Please draw attention to our website as this showcases your work and the level of artistic ability within the group you belong to and have been selected to join.
Please select really good quality photos of the images you want to use to promote yourself. Many works shown in the brochure and website sell very well! If sold, don’t forget to offer new images for the following year!
Attract prospective customers to your venue during the OSA event. Use good quality, easily read signs and blue balloons to direct the public to your venue.
Banners are handed out at the launch, hang them at least a week before the OSA Event. Adapt the wording to say that your venue will be open soon, or put the dates of the event on top of the text which says TODAY. The banner needs to be returned after the event please.
Leaflets are high quality and need distributing to interested parties. Please engage the public in conversation about OSA before handing the brochures out.
We are looking for sponsorship from local businesses, so forward your ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org
Please do not try to acquire a venue on behalf of OSA, please talk to the Committee/ Chair via email@example.com about any venue suggestions.
About the application process ( Click the plus sign to open )
This process is to ensure the quality of content, and to make sure all our members are based in Ayrshire and are producing original art or creations.
Don’t worry, we are an open and inclusive group – this review process is just to make sure our members are genuine.
Complete and submit the application form below on this page.
We will review and (hopefully) approve your application.
We will send you our sign up form and collect payment.
- Upload your content to our directory
- Join our Facebook groups.
- Throughout the year we will open submissions for our online exhibitions and gather details for your planned open day exhibition.
- We look forward to meeting you and seeing your work!