Application Guidelines

Application Deadline: Wednesday, June 14, 5:00 PM ET

NYFA only accepts applications submitted online at



Applications Open: Tuesday, March 21 at 10:00 AM ET  

Applications Close: Wednesday, June 14 at 5:00 PM ET*

Applicants Notified: August 2023

*Please note that the application form on Submittable will automatically close & stop accepting applications at this time. 



  • Work Samples – up to 10 digital images of works created within the last 5 years
  • Artist Statement – up to 250 words 
  • Artwork Information List – up to 2 pages in PDF format 


  • Cultural Statement – up to 300 words

Questions? Visit our Frequently Asked Questions Page or email [email protected].


The JGS Fellowship for Photography is open to New York State photography artists, living and working anywhere in the following New York State regions: Western New York, Finger Lakes, Southern Tier, Central New York, North Country, Mohawk Valley, Capital District, Hudson Valley, and Long Island. 

Applicants must meet the following criteria:

  1. Must work in photography. Traditional and experimental photography or any form in which photography or photographic techniques are pivotal, if not exclusive, is eligible.
  2. Need to be a current full-time resident of New York State and have lived full-time in one of the regions listed above for a minimum of 12 months at the time applications close (residents of New York City are not eligible to apply for this award).
  3. Must live in one of the following counties: Albany, Allegany, Broome, Cattaraugus, Cayuga, Chautauqua, Chemung, Chenango, Clinton, Columbia, Cortland, Delaware, Dutchess, Erie, Essex, Franklin, Fulton, Genesee, Greene, Hamilton, Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Livingston, Madison, Monroe, Montgomery, Nassau, Niagara, Oneida, Onondaga, Ontario, Orange, Orleans, Oswego, Otsego, Putnam, Rensselaer, Rockland, St. Lawrence, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Schuyler, Seneca, Steuben, Suffolk, Sullivan, Tioga, Tompkins, Ulster, Warren, Washington, Wayne, Westchester, Wyoming, and Yates.
  4. Be at least 25 years of age at the time the application closes.
  5. Cannot be enrolled in bachelor’s or master’s degree programs of any kind.
  6. All past recipients of any NYFA grant or Fellowship are eligible to apply, except for past recipients of the JGS Fellowship for Photography.
  7. Cannot be a NYFA employee, members of the NYFA Board of Trustees or Artists’ Advisory Committee, and/or an immediate family member of any of the above.


What to Submit

Applicants can submit up to 10 digital images. You do not need to submit all 10 work samples if you feel your practice is represented well with fewer images. 

Work samples are a representation of your artistic work created within the last five years. This is the most important part of your application, as it will be the primary point of review. Keep in mind that the panel reviews a large volume of material in quick succession; therefore, it is very important that you present your work clearly and in a quality that best represents your practice

We do not recommend applicants combine multiple independent work sample images into one image file (for example: including 4 non-connecting image files together in a grid format). Each application can only have up to 10 artworks represented through the image work samples. Images of diptychs, installations, and multi-part works are accepted.

File Format

File name: label each image starting with a number 01 through 10, followed by the title of the work, ex. 01_Landscape.jpg. Do not include your name.
File size: No larger than 4.0 MB (each image)
File format: .jpg

When formatting your images, RGB is the recommended color profile for screen viewing. You can use image editing software such as Photoshop, Canva, or Preview to edit, resize, and format your images.

Work Sample Description

Work Sample Descriptions: Before you upload your files to your application, you will need to name your files. Do not label any work samples with your name. Instead, label each uploaded work sample starting with a number 01 through 10, followed by the title of the work. Number your files in the order you would like them to be reviewed.

Metadata Section in Application: A metadata section will appear on your application form after your work sample has been uploaded. In this section, you will be able to provide a description of your work, including the title(s), date(s) the work was completed, materials, dimensions, and additional information (for example: format, equipment, location etc.). If your piece is largely conceptual, and requires additional written context, please explain this in the “additional information” section using 1-2 sentences maximum.

Artwork Information List

In addition to your submitted images, applicants are required to itemize each submitted work sample and describe them individually in the Artwork Information List. The Artwork Information List should be no longer than 2 pages in PDF format. To ensure that the panel will be able to easily review this list while referencing your work samples, make sure that the titles of your work in the information list correspond with the titles of your images from the metadata

Include the following information for each image:

  • Title 
  • Date 
  • Materials
  • Dimensions
  • Description of the image:  Further explaining the context, concept, and execution of your work sample(s). Be sure to note whether your work samples represent documentation of an installation, experience, etc. You can also describe the circumstances in which the viewer/audience should experience the work. Please include instructions on how to navigate your work if it is interactive. 


Artist Statement (Required, 250 Words Max.):

A short, concise statement giving an overview of your artistic practice. This statement should give a brief introduction to ideas, themes, and methods in your practice. This statement should also reflect the ideas and inspiration relevant to your submitted work samples. Use this statement to highlight your role in creating/executing the work. This is not an Artist Bio.

Cultural Statement (Optional, 300 Words Max.): 

A supplemental statement describing how your work is rooted in a specific cultural technique, tradition, or community.

Referencing only the submitted Work Samples, write a Cultural Statement if:

  1. Your practice stems from a specific and/or unique cultural tradition.
  2. The understanding of your work is dependent on the context of a cultural community.


All applications must be submitted via the online application platform Submittable at . NYFA does not accept any physical copies of applications.

Applicants must have a Submittable account in order to access the application form and upload supporting materials. To create an account, click on the JGS Fellowship for Photography 2023 application, enter your details, and click Create Account and Continue. A verification email will be sent to your email address; check your inbox and click on the link provided in the email to verify your account. If you already have an account, sign in and begin the application.

*If you do not receive an email from Submittable in your inbox, be sure to check your Spam inbox. If you do not see this confirmation, please contact [email protected]. 

Saving your progress on Submittable: To save your working application as a draft, scroll to the bottom of the form and select SAVE DRAFT. Applications are not considered complete until you hit SUBMIT. Sign in here to access your draft application

Locating your Submitted Application: Click here to review your Submitted application 

Notifications: Applicants will be notified of their application results via Submittable. We recommend using an email address that is regularly active to ensure that you are receiving updates.


To request an accommodation or if you need assistance in applying online, please email [email protected] or call (212) 366-6900 ext. 166 on Tuesdays-Thursdays between 10:30 AM and 5:00 PM ET (NYFA is currently working on a hybrid schedule). We ask that requests for accommodations be made as soon as possible, and no later than Thursday, June 1 to allow adequate time for staff to support you in submitting an application before the deadline.

Image Credit: Penelope Umbrico (NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellow in Photography ’10); 6, 063, 750 Suns from Flickr (Partial) 8/26/09, 2007-09, C-Print