Focus Point Shape

International Online Art Gallery – juried online art competititons

Can You Lose When the Art Contest is Free?

Oh No!


The Myth of the Free Art Contest

Free is a good thing…when it comes to your art…NOT!

Sometimes we want so badly for someone other than friends, relatives or neighbors to see our art
we make foolish mistakes – like FREE art shows, competitions, and contests.

The downside to FREE is always hidden in the fine print.

Artists can unwittingly give up their rights when submitting to FREE art competitions. Reading the
fine print of submission rules sometimes reveals the artist is giving away ‘rights to any future rights,
interests and copyrights…’ Granting a competition ‘exclusive right to use’ or some such language…
removes the artist from any legal participation in any future revenues their images may produce. Sometimes…
the wording is…’the artist will not receive any monetary remuneration for the granting of these rights…’

The bottom line is… the artist has given away their hard work, their thought process…their work for FREE.
And it does not end there. Sometimes… the competition is not free…but the language of the rules are the same.

In essence…the artist just paid for the privilege of giving away their work for FREE.

This is just one of the reasons our art competitions are unique. Because we are artists… not MBA’s or LLD’s or some such highly educated guardians of the status quo… we built these competitions to benefit you.

We do not own nor participate in your rights to your images. When you enter a contest with us… you grant us a temporary right to exhibit your work for the duration of the show and or exhibition. That temporary right in no way impacts your own rights as the originator of your work… to do what…when you want… with your work now or in the future…ever.

In other words… you retain all rights to your work, now and forever… even though you have entered a
competition with Focus Point & Shape International Online Art Gallery.


  • 1- Free entry sounds good…but no body can afford to do anything for free. The profit has to come out of the back end… just make sure… you are not the ‘back end.’
  • 2- If legal language stumps you… then stop. Just possibly it may not be in your best interest to proceed.
  • 3- Read the rules and make clear in your mind…you understand them.
  • 4- No matter what the promises or proposed benefits for participation or winning a contest are, slam the
    door on competitions where you are giving up your rights and or copyright to your art.
  • 5- Remember…FREE does not always mean FREE.