This article first appeared in NANthology, the NAN newsletter, in winter 2014.
MYTH #1: Entering The Exemplary is much too expensive.
To be clear, there is a minimal entry fee for submitting pieces to The Exemplary. But there is a discount when you enter more than one piece. So you might want to take full advantage of the offer and enter more than one piece. This is a wonderful opportunity for showcasing your stitching achievements.
MYTH #2: Entering The Exemplary is time consuming.
There is an element of truth to this myth in that you do have to package each entry carefully to avoid breakage or damage in transit. But when you conduct a cost benefit analysis and think about your time and energy expended, you might be surprised to find that the feeling of satisfaction in your personal achievements on entering The Exemplary outweighs the expenditures.
MYTH #3: My work isn’t good enough.
Exactly what does “good enough” look like? The idea behind The Exemplary is to share your work with your colleagues and with the general public. Make sure you include your artist statement to clarify your approach for your viewer and to enrich their viewing experience.
MYTH #4: My piece will be disqualified if I enter it into the incorrect category.
Nothing could be further from the truth. If in fact you’ve designated an incorrect category, your piece will be moved to the correct category and you will be notified. But your category designation will be discussed and reviewed by The Exemplary judges and administrators and not moved based on a whim; their concern is that your piece be judged to its best advantage.
MYTH #5: Judges award ribbons based on personal taste. Why would I bother?
Ethics is a basic tenet of the Judge’s Certification Program and objectivity is a concept that candidates discuss at every level of training. In truth, each piece is objectively evaluated on its own merit. You want to enter your stitched piece to share your creativity and talents with your colleagues in the stitching community. It’s a win-win for everyone involved. You learn and strengthen your skills and the audience is uplifted.