Rays Artist Series

Creative Pinellas is excited to manage the Artist Call on behalf of The Tampa Bay Rays for “The Rays Artist Series,” with the goal of selecting six Tampa Bay and surrounding area artists to create a welcoming art gallery experience for fans at Tropicana Field. The Rays Artist Series supports Artists to become part of the Rays artistic family.

Art Goals: This project ensures an inviting first impression for all those traveling to Tropicana Field. Art will be created by Artists living and working in the counties where Rays fans live. The selected artworks will be shown in a gallery space in the main concourse of the ballpark.

Each Artist chosen for this project will create an original work around a sports theme that will be reproduced with the Rays on a large scale (typically 72” x 72”) canvas. The application will list the themes. Past themes have included Jackie Robinson and the Rays; Pride and the Rays; Roberto Clemente and the Rays; and more.

Artists are invited to think of all the creative ways that the themes may be depicted, including artwork that goes beyond depicting players in a literal manner.

After Artists are selected, the Rays will work directly with the Artists to develop their artwork and to ensure it is successfully transferred into the final print version.

Commission Details: Each Artist chosen for this project will receive $1,500 for their original artwork. Additionally, they will receive access to a suite at a Rays game and will have their work promoted nationally and internationally on the Rays website and through social media. Due to the nature of this commissioned project, the Rays will own the copyright to the work. The Artist will retain the right to show the work in their portfolio and as part of their personal marketing efforts.

Who May Apply? Artists, designers, and illustrators from Charlotte, Citrus, Hernando, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pinellas, Pasco, Polk, and Sarasota counties of Florida are invited to apply. All applicants must live annually within the 9 Florida counties for at least 6 months + one day. If you have been selected as an Artist for a Rays Artist Series in the past, we ask that you forgo applying for this round.

Call to Artists Important Dates – subject to change
Each eligible application submitted during the application period will be reviewed. A panel made up of an Artist and representatives from the Rays will select the chosen Artists.

Part One: Submission & Selection

  • Call for Entries Open: Tuesday, April 16, 2024
  • Informational Meeting: Tuesday, April 23, 2024, noon online – CLICK HERE
  • Call for Entries Close: Tuesday, May 7, 2024
  • Artists are intended to be notified of their status by June 3, 2024
  • Selected Artist Meeting: To be announced

Part Two: After Artist Selection

  • At or after notification of selection, the selected Artists will receive information (theme, sizes, location) for their artwork.
  • The Rays want to remind Artists that the artworks do not have to be the size of the reproduced canvas, but that the art must be accurately translatable to the size of the reproduced canvas, typically 72” x 72”.
  • Artists are reminded to work in the medium they applied in. For example, if a chosen Artist is an oil painter, they should work in oil, not graphic design software.
  • Artists present two design ideas in mockup form for review and approval by the Rays. Once the concept is chosen, Artists will submit their final artwork to the Rays. The Artist covers the cost of the final canvas.
  • During the summer, the Rays will also work with Artists to ensure required items regarding payments, such as W9s and financial institution information.

Prepare your application: The application will require:

  • County of residence and contact information
  • Biographical statement
  • Social media and website links
  • 4 portfolio images that accurately show the style and medium you intend to use to create artwork for the Rays
  • Artistic medium you intend to create in if selected
  • The theme(s) you want to be considered for
  • A short description of the artwork you would create if selected – but please, do not submit mock-up designs, since these limit the review of your portfolio and written design concept

Sample Images from 2023 Artists:

Pride and the Rays by Kendel Woods
Evan Longoria by John Ritter

Application Questions: Arts Project Manager at Creative Pinellas, muralarts@creativepinellas.org

Applications are closed. Grantees will be announced on Jun 03, 2024

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