After some initial idea planning (Fig: 1), I shared some of the plans with Artist duo Jennifer Essex and Harry Man, who have experience with Arts Council grants. The made some positive contribution to the way that the idea is developing and also some very useful suggestions that will hopefully strengthen my application.
Figure 1: Phil Hill (October, 2020) Ideas on Funding blog post.
- I should work to remove central focus from a single institution as the Arts Council wouldn’t want to fund a project that they might consider be me doing my existing job. The application is also for an individual artist; therefore, it should be about me working with a range of institutions.
- It would be beneficial to find the local Arts Council officer to discuss my idea, which would support my application when it is ready to be submitted. There might also be a bridge person within the local council already who works with placing artists into educational settings. It is important that I then pursue any connection to the council to support the development with my idea and application. This might also include some match funding that the Arts Council would ultimately be expecting to see as part of any application.
- It would be worth pushing for some kind of outdoor exhibition – potentially in the high-street – as the Arts Council would be keen to fund a project that is seen to be reacting positively to the ongoing Covid situation.
As it stands, the biggest challenge for my application is in the lack of other institutions to approach for the images. This in itself is not hugely problematic to overcome as I will happily make those contacts. The main challenge actually would be finding the time to go and work with them. As I work in an educational setting, finding the time would present the biggest obstacle.
Clearly, I have some work to do in order to develop this idea. I have made good strides so far, including some key contact within the council. Jen and Harry both mentioned that these applications take some time to put together, there is a fair amount of logistics to consider and also in gaining support from other stakeholders.