FAQ

ArtWorksTO Frequently Asked Questions

Download FAQ here.

Table of Contents:

Part 1: Application process (eligibility, timelines, selection process, etc.)

  1. How do I apply to ArtWorksTO? Is there an application form?
  2. Is ArtWorksTO right for me?
  3. Are people living outside of Toronto able to apply to ArtWorksTO?
  4. What is the difference between the Next Stream and the Foundations Stream?
  5. Can I apply to both the Next and Foundations Streams?
  6. Do I have to complete the OCAD U Portfolio Training to be eligible to apply for ArtWorksTO?
  7. What is the selection process?
  8. What is a Request for Proposals (RFP) and why is it being used in ArtWorksTO to match participants to paid contracts?
  9. What should I include in my portfolio?

Part 2: ArtWorksTO program content (certificate program, paid contracts, industry advisors, etc.)

  1. What courses are offered through OCAD U School of Continuing Studies as part of the Art and Design Professional Skills Certificate Program included for participants of the Next Stream?
  2. Is there a cost to Next Stream participants for the OCAD U School of Continuing Studies Certificate Program?
  3. How long will the certificate course take to complete for Next Stream participants?
  4. What do the paid contracts involve? How much do selected participants get paid?
  5. Are contracts inclusive of HST?
  6. What does The Remix Project offer participants?
  7. What are the program timelines?
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PART 1: APPLICATION PROCESS

  1. How do I apply to ArtWorksTO? Is there an application form?
    To apply for ArtWorksTO please review this Frequently Asked Question and complete the online application form, which includes a few questions about your eligibility, your experience as a media artist and your online portfolio.  The online application form is available on the Neighbourhood Arts Network website:

    APPLY TODAY

  2. Is ArtWorksTO right for me?
    ArtWorksTO is designed for youth (18-29 years) with experience (self-taught, through community-based or formal training) as a media artist (videographer, graphic designer, illustrator, photographer, social media communications, UX design, etc.); and young artists with career aspirations in the creative industries as a media-based artist or entrepreneur.

    Media artists include artists working as videographers, graphic designers, illustrators, photographers, social media communications consultants, and UX designers.
  3. Are people living outside of Toronto able to apply to ArtWorksTO?
    To be eligible for ArtWorksTO, participants need to be residents of Toronto.  If as a result of COVID-19, you have had to move out of the city but you are planning to return, you are eligible to apply.
  4. What is the difference between the Next Stream and the Foundations Stream?
    The Next Stream and Foundations Stream offer participants the same programming, with the only difference being that the Next Stream includes the OCAD U School of Continuing Studies Certificate in Art and Design Professional Skills.
  5. Can I apply to both the Next and Foundations Streams?
    No. If you are interested in the OCAD U School of Continuing Studies Certificate Program, apply to the Next Stream. Next Stream applicants who are unsuccessful will be automatically invited to apply for the Foundations Stream. Feedback will be provided to unsuccessful Next Stream applicants, so that it can be incorporated into your application for the Foundations Stream. 
  6. Do I have to complete the OCAD U Portfolio Training to be eligible to apply for ArtWorksTO?
    The Portfolio Training offered by OCAD U is not a requirement to apply for ArtWorksTO. The Portfolio Training is strongly encouraged for all applicants to help you develop a strong portfolio as part of your application.
  7. What is the selection process?
    An ArtworksTO panel of staff and industry professionals will review and shortlist applications. Shortlisted Next Stream candidates will be invited to a conversation style interview to get to know you, explore your fit with the program and answer any questions that you may have.  Interviews will take place between August 5 and 11, 2021. Shortlisted Foundations Stream candidates will be invited to participate in a Request for Proposals (RFP) process. Proposals will be reviewed by the ArtWorksTO review panel and the client you will be working with.
  8. Applicants will be selected based on:
    • Eligibility
    • Career aspirations (is ArtWorksTO well suited to your career goals?)
    • Portfolio (Reviewed for creative exploration, technical skills, expression of ideas, context, motivation, written skills, passion)
    • Artistic discipline representation among the group
    • Diversity within the group among our priority populations (IBPOC, 2SLGBTQ)
    • Skills fit with available contracts
    • Need - will this program make an impact on the applicant’s career goals?
       
  9. What is a Request for Proposals (RFP) and why is it being used in ArtWorksTO to match participants to paid contracts?
    A Request for Proposal, or RFP, is a document that a client (ie. business, non-profit, or government agency) creates to outline the requirements for a specific project to seek proposals from qualified applicants. Proposals are reviewed to select an applicant to complete the project.

    Requests for Proposals (RFPs) are widely used in the media arts industry. ArtWorksTO offers training to selected Next Stream participants and shortlisted Foundations Stream participants on the RFP process and how to write successful proposals. This training is designed to support participation in the ArtWorksTO RFP process, but also to develop skills that could be applied when seeking other paid contracts.

    Equity concerns have been identified related to the RFP process. ArtWorksTO aims to address these concerns through:
    • Ensuring all selected Next Stream participants are matched with a paid contract through the RFP process
    • Shortlisting Foundations Stream applicants so that there is a reasonable chance of being awarded a paid contract through the RFP process
    • Providing honorariums to shortlisted Foundations Stream applicants who are not selected for ArtWorksTO through the RFP process, to compensate for time spent on writing the proposal
    • Ensuring content of all proposals remains confidential and remains the intellectual property of the applicant
    • Providing free training for selected and shortlisted participants on the RFP process and writing effective proposals to build industry standard skills
    • Working with a diverse panel made up of ArtWorksTO alumni, Advisory members and project partners to review proposals and award contracts
  10. What should I include in my portfolio?
    Short bio: (300 words maximum) What’s your story?

    Your portfolio: Your portfolio is a collection of work that represents your creative and technical experiences and accomplishments and is a visual representation of who you are. You need to demonstrate that you are a visual communicator and that you are well-equipped to succeed in the ArtworksTO program. This can include experimentation in both traditional and digital media or any combination. Your portfolio should include:
    • Artist statement: (300 words maximum) Your artist statement should explain your specific interests and passions as well as who or what inspires and influences the work you make. This is your opportunity to introduce yourself as an artist and provide context so we can better understand your work.
    • Examples of your creative process: Include examples/pdf/images/drafts of your sketchbook, process and concept development skills as part of your portfolio submission. You can document your creative process as:
      • a storyboard
      • creative journal
      • concept/idea book 
      • digital document.

      The process work you provide, should link to several of the finished pieces included in your portfolio. These can range from:
      • Experimentation
      • photos of development
      • Drawings
      • Mark-making
      • Writing
      • research and inspirations
         
    • Finished Work: Include up to 5 examples of your original finalized work that demonstrates creativity, technical skills, range and expression of ideas.
    • Descriptions: For each finished piece, include in 50 words or less, the process/making method/media/concept and purpose of each submission. Please include the details of the collaborators and clients you worked with if applicable.
    Tips:
    • Works can be presented in a series – we recommend limiting 3-5 works for a series
    • Works can be video – we recommend a highlight reel (1-2 mins), understanding that reviewers may skim through longer videos 
    • Include links to your professional website and/or social media pages.  
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PART 2:  ARTWORKSTO PROGRAM CONTENT

  1. What is offered through OCAD University as part of the Art and Design Professional Skills Certificate Program included for participants of the Next Stream?
    OCAD U's School of Continuing Studies, Certificate in Art and Design Professional Skills (October 2021 to June 2022) will provide selected participants with:
  2. Is there a cost to Next Stream participants for the OCAD U School of Continuing Studies Certificate Program?
    There is no cost for participants accepted into the ArtWorksTO Next Stream for the OCAD U School of Continuing Studies Certificate in Art and Design Professional Skills. Participants will be provided with a payment of $150 per course to cover any costs to facilitate learning (software, child care, etc.).

    OCAD U offers ArtWorksTO Next Stream participants a 50% discount on additional Continuing Studies Courses taken within 12 months of starting the program.
  3. How long will the certificate course take to complete for Next Stream participants?
    Each 6 week course has 18 hours of online lectures and tutorials and students can expect to work on assignments for an average of 3 additional hours per week, for a total of 6 hours a week per course.

    There is flexibility to complete courses until the end of the semester (June, 2022). Students can complete the courses in a flexible timeline, for example students can take more than one course at a time, or take a few weeks off between courses.
  4. What do the paid contracts involve? How much do selected participants get paid?
    Paid contracts will involve completing communications projects (such as short films, posters, flyers, videos, social media campaigns, etc.) for programs and services offered by our project partners, including the City of Toronto, Toronto Arts Foundation, OCAD U and the Remix Project. This work will include completing a contract with deadlines and deliverables, meeting with clients, preparing concepts, completing work and providing revisions.

    ArtWorksTO Foundations & Next stream participants will be awarded a contract valued at approximately $4,000 per participant.  The contract amount should include all associated costs with completing the projects, including equipment rental, transportation, artists’ fees, etc.
  5. Are contracts inclusive of HST?
    Yes, contracts are inclusive of HST, as well as other costs associated with completing the project (see question 13 for examples of other costs).
  6. What does The Remix Project offer participants?
    The Remix Project provides participants with support from industry advisors through a mix of group and one-on-one activities designed to share tips from professionals working in the media arts industry.  Industry advisors can also provide you with technical advice on your paid contracts.
  7. What are the program timelines?
    Aug. 18, 2021 Next Stream Orientation
    Sep. 7, 2021 OCAD U OCAD U School of Continuing Studies Certificate Program coursework begins (Next Stream)
    Oct. 3, 2021 RFP deadline
    Oct. 22, 2021 Notification of paid contract
    Oct. 27, 2021 Foundations Stream Orientation
    Nov. 2021 - Apr 2022 Contract work, support from industry advisors
    May 2022 Branded Youth Entrepreneurship Conference
    May 2022

    Program Completion Celebration