F.A.Q. for Artists

The Basics The PAINTS program is pretty straightforward. Projects range in scope from 3 to 12 hours. We try to keep the logistics and paperwork that surround it to a minimum and keep the focus on the hands-on time working in classrooms with the children and youth. While projects, of course, are made to work for students ranging in age and ability (the program is for grades Primary to 12), there should always be a connection back to the artist's own work. That can take many forms, and is really just something for you to keep in mind as you work with a partner teacher to put a project together.

Annual Deadlines For Artists May 1st & December 1st.

For Schools September 30th & January 30th. In cases where a deadline falls on a Saturday, Sunday or holiday, the deadline becomes the next business day.

What do we mean by "professional artist"? For the purposes of PAINTS, a professional artist:

  • has specialized training in the field (not necessarily in academic institutions)
  • is recognized as such by their peers
  • is committed to devoting more time to artistic activity, if financially feasible
  • maintains an independent professional practice

As a PAINTS artist, how many hours will I be working in schools in a year? Is there a limit? Individual PAINTS artists can work up to 20 hours per school year through the program. Generally, even before we set this limit, most artists would work this amount or less. Schools may apply for up to 24 PAINTS hours per school year. We continue to seek funding support to increase the number of PAINTS hours, but they are finite. Bear in mind that we have artists and schools all over the province doing these projects. Some artists may do 3 hours over a school year, some may do 15 or 20, some registered artists may not have a project in a particular school year. We do encourage schools to work with artists who are close by, so that has an effect of helping to spread the hours out among artists as well.

Do I pick the school, or do they pick me? Ultimately, the school will choose the artist. Teachers and parents sometimes search the database and get in touch with artists themselves. Of course, a great way to get projects happening is to take the initiative yourself. Contact teachers or parents you know in your area. Think about the kinds of projects that you’d most like to do and call a local school to suggest it. It's a great way to inspire them to work with you on a project. There’s a link on this site to the contact information for all of the Public Schools in the province.

Writing an application The project application comes from the school, specifically from the teacher who will be your collaborator on the project. The initial impetus might come from you, a teacher or a parent. The teacher needs to ensure that the school is on board, and that the school or Home and School Association is able to pay the school portion of the fee, $25 per hour. The description of the workshop should be either written by you or in collaboration with you. It’s important that the project works for all concerned – i.e. the size of group for each workshop, timeframes that make the work achievable, etc.

A note on BIG projects Projects (art or otherwise) that involve the whole school can be wonderful events. But, they aren’t usually a good fit for PAINTS. Sometimes a PAINTS project can be a small piece of a larger project that a school is doing with support from other sources. (i.e. 4Cs or Artsmarts). So, for instance, if a school is doing a series of projects that focus on creating a garden, then a PAINTS project could be working with one class to create signs, or stepping stones. It’s also worth mentioning that murals aren’t a good fit for PAINTS either. They tend to require so many more hours than we’re able to support, and they often involve a lot of work to be done that doesn’t involve the students, but rather the artist or other adults working on their own. A PAINTS project could help lay groundwork for a mural - possibly one that works with older students on elements of large scale work so that they could be part of designing and making a mural through other avenues of support.

Hands on support for the workshop We encourage you to leave as much prep work, supply shopping, room set up and clean up to the teacher, students or volunteers as is possible. This not only reduces the workload for you, but it also increases the sense of investment on the part of others in the project.

Getting paid PAINTS artists are paid $50 per hour for project time working with students. The fee is paid to you directly from PAINTS upon the completion of your project. If one project is a large number of hours and spans more than a month, we can make an arrangement to make a payment halfway through. Contact me directly and we can arrange that. For a cheque to be written for you, both the project artist and teacher need to fill out a short online evaluation. Cheques are written every two weeks, so in general, you’ll wait 1 to 3 weeks for payment. Please note: VANS does not issue a T4 for the PAINTS honoraria payments. It is the responsibility of the individual to declare the honoraria amount in the year in which the income is received.

Communication Once you have a project planned with a teacher, make sure to stay in good contact. Email is often great, since we’re all on such different schedules and teachers can almost never be reached during the school day. Also, don’t forget that Andrea is here as a resource. Write or call with questions anytime! 902-423-4694 paints@visualarts.ns.ca