Project Grant Program – Individuals and Collectives

Project Grant Program – Individuals and Collectives

The community investment team at Calgary Arts Development hosted an information session for individuals and collectives applying to the Project Grant Program on Monday, July 6, 2020.

The session was hosted on Zoom and included a question and answer section.

Taylor Poitras: All right, welcome everyone. It’s about five after three, so I’m sure there’ll be more folks trickling in. Melissa is helping me co-host and is admitting people, so I might just get started so we can get rolling—there’s a lot of information to go through.

Thank you for joining us. This is the info session for the Project Grant Program for Individuals and Collectives. My name is Taylor Poitras, and my pronouns are she and her. I’m currently the program specialist for any of our individual or collective programs; your go to gal for this program if you are interested in applying.

And before we begin, I’d like to share a few virtual housekeeping items. First off, the session is being recorded and it will be posted to our website later on for those who can’t attend live or want to reference the presentation or the transcript later on. Today we’re also using an app called It’s a closed captioning service. At the top of your screen, you’ll see a red button that says live on live notes. So, if you open up that and scroll down, you’ll see you can view the stream on live notes. Currently, they’re only offering this service in English but I do know that they’re working on offering it in multiple languages. Please keep in mind that it is artificial intelligence, so it is an app that will very likely have some errors in the translation during the live-stream, particularly for any Blackfoot words. So just keep that in mind if you’re following along, using the closed captioning.

Since this is a recorded session, and we will be using it as a future resource for artists, I will likely be reading directly from my notes, just to ensure that I can include all the important information and the details that I want to share with you today. So, I apologize in advance for this lack of virtual eye contact.

I’ll be talking at you for most of today’s session but there will also be a Q+A period at the end for any questions that you might have. Please save all your questions until the end of the presentation if possible, but of course you can drop questions into the chat box area as they come up for you. I’ll make sure to get to them at the end, or Melissa, my colleague might be able to jump in and answer questions as we go.

Please be aware that as we download this recording and we download the chat transcript, I’m not sure if private chats will also be downloaded. It just depends on Zoom as they keep updating and changing their platform so just as an FYI, I can’t guarantee we won’t see your private chats, if we download it afterwards so just be cognizant of that.

And as you can see already I am sharing my screen, so that everyone can view the PowerPoint presentation, you should be able to adjust the various window sizes, and the placements so that they’re optimal for you. If you want to see my talking head, I would say the top right-hand corner is a good spot, based on my slide deck. But you can also just minimize it completely. You can also pop open your chat separately, if that’s helpful if you want to be looking at the chat while you’re also looking at the slides.

Also, please feel free to change your display name and include your pronouns, or see who else is in the meeting, by clicking on the participants box in the main toolbar at the bottom of your screen. This is also where you’ll find the raise hand feature. If you have a question that you’d like to ask verbally later on in the Q+A. I’ll do my best to get to everyone who has their hand raised, as well as the chat questions. But of course, you are welcome to also reach out privately afterwards.

Please use the chat to let us know if you’re having any technical difficulties. If I’m not speaking loudly enough or if you need me to slow down or speed up. There are also a few CADA staff, as I mentioned, who can jump on and help with those kinds of things. Melissa might also be sharing some relevant links as I go through my presentation. I’ll pause for a moment just to get everyone set up and let me know in the chat right now if you are having any difficulties.

Okay, no dire messages are popping up so I think I’ll start. I’d like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the traditional and ancestral territories of the Niitsitapi (The Blackfoot Confederacy) which include the Siksika, Piikani, and Kainai First Nations, as well as the Tsuu T’ina First Nation and Stoney Nakoda, comprised of the Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley First Nations of Treaty 7. I’d also like to acknowledge the people of the Métis Nation, Region 3 and all First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples, from across North America, that call Calgary, Mohkinstsis home. We recognize the land and the original peoples as an act of reconciliation and deep, deep gratitude to those whose territory we currently reside on or are perhaps visiting.

There are a lot of folks on this call, some of whom I recognize or have a relationship with already, but there are also a lot of folks who I’ve never met and who may be new to Calgary Arts Development; so, I’ll start off with an introduction to what Calgary Arts Development is, and let you know that it is often called CADA for short. So, if you hear people in the community, saying CADA, it may be Calgary Arts Development Authority.

For those of you who are not aware Calgary Arts Development is in its 15th year as the city’s art development and municipal granting organization. We are mandated to steward public dollars for the public good for all Calgarians. We believe in arts-led city building and fostering a sustainable and resilient arts sector, which we do primarily through making grants to artists and arts organizations. Some of you may be asking what is a grant? In this particular context a grant is a sum of money awarded by Calgary Arts Development to artists, groups and arts organizations to help them pursue their creative vision, to operate, to complete projects and share their work with the public locally, nationally and internationally. Unlike a loan grants do not need to be repaid, but do require follow up reporting or other commitments in exchange for that investment.

I also want to quickly share who else is on the Community Investment and Impact team with me at Calgary Arts Development. We have Sara Bateman our Director, Melissa Tuplin (who’s on the call) our Community Investment and Capacity Manager, Sable Sweetgrass is our Specialist for Indigenous Programs, Marta Ligocki is our Specialist for the Arts Organization programs, and I’ve already introduced myself and Van Chu is our Grants Coordinator.

We’ve got our main email address up there, if you’re ever unsure who to contact you can email the email address, and our coordinator Van will make sure you get in touch with the correct person. For this particular program if you have questions you can email me directly.

My contact info will be shared on the last slide. Also, just a note that all of our staff are still working remotely from home, so email is best but we can definitely still check our voicemail, and set up phone calls or virtual meetings as needed.

The community investment team is the department that is responsible for creating and administering Calgary Arts Development’s granting programs. This makes up more than 75% of our total budget from The City of Calgary. We don’t just run the processes, we’re also here to direct you to other potential resources or supports. And of course, if you’re applying for a grant, we’re here to help you fairly access and navigate the program and help you tell your story in an authentic and clear way.

Beyond our mandate and the criteria of our programs, we strive to approach our work in all aspects of the granting cycle with the values of: one size fits one, nothing about us without us and virtuous cycles. These are inclusive design concepts that we are beginning to utilize and develop in our work with the help of JD Derbyshire, our inclusive designer in residence. Shout out to JD!

We acknowledge that systems like granting are usually designed in a one-size-fits-all way, meaning that they’re often designed to fit the dominant culture, while creating barriers for many others. Because of this we aim to continue learning more from our communities about the specific challenges and barriers that our artists and communities face.

We’re working to create more entry points to access and working with applicants in a more one-size-fits-one-way, but we acknowledge that we still have a lot of work to do on an individual, organizational and systemic level. Just as my job is to be an expert in the programs that I run, it’s your job to be an expert in your own practice. So be authentic to who you are as an artist, what you want to do and why it’s important to you. Part of one-size-fits-one means that whatever you tell us about your work is our starting point for understanding the impact of it.

This also means that it’s your job to tell a clear and meaningful story about how your work aligns to the criteria of the program, which I will dig into later. When it comes to equity, diversity, inclusion and access, we know that this is both a goal, but also an ongoing and iterative process of learning, adapting and changing.

Some of you may be aware of the public conversations that we’ve been having around EDIA (equity, diversity, inclusion, and access), as well as anti-racism. If you don’t know about those town halls, or public forums we’re happy to share a link to the recordings of those, or a link to sign up for future conversations throughout the summer.

This ties into the concept of nothing about us without us. There are a few things that we will not tolerate, which include hate speech, cultural appropriation and actively exclusionary behaviors, so please be aware that applications or projects that contain these items will not be moved to assessment, or be accepted by our staff. Nothing about us without us, is the belief that if you are creating work about a specific community—that community needs to be actively engaged and consulted, and there needs to be a clear, intentional and reciprocal relationship. We value the lived experience of others and honor the intersectional and unique experience of various people and their communities.

Lastly virtuous cycles. In the context of our programs, this means that every time you do something, it creates a positive feedback loop that moves you forward in a productive way. For us, when we run a program, we try to learn and make adjustments every single time. This will tie into what success looks like for you, and why that is and how you measure success in your application. So, it isn’t about doing everything perfectly or doing something because it’s the way it’s always been done, and maintaining the status quo. It’s about asking yourself, how will this grant create a virtuous rather than a vicious cycle for me in my practice, whereby I can learn through not only success, but also through failure. We believe in failing forward.

Those are our values, but I want to also share our definition for equity. I mentioned earlier that at Calgary Arts Development our main purpose is to steward public dollars for the public good, and that means for all Calgarians. This means that we have a responsibility to design programs that are accessible and open to all perspectives and experiences that exist in our community. Something we are learning on our journey at CADA is that you cannot truly achieve diversity, inclusion or access without focusing on equity, and that equity is both a goal and an ongoing process.

So, I thought I’d share this definition—and it is a working definition because we don’t have all the answers, and it is an iterative process for us as we deepen our understanding of what it means to be in relationship with all Calgarians.

Definition: “Equity is an approach to diversity in which differences amongst all people in a community group or organization are accommodated on an individual basis, and historical exclusions and systemic barriers that are unique to diverse people are taken into account. Equity thus creates an equalized sense of belonging and shared authority for all people present, and is often contrasted with equality in which all people are treated the same.” So, we recognize that processes, systems and grant applications benefit and privilege, some people over others, depending on many different identities and experiences. And the biggest example of that is that all of our applications are currently submitted online in a written format in English – those are barriers for many folks.

Our staff are here to support you in your application in whatever way you need, depending on your unique identities and requirements. Some examples of accommodations that we’re able to provide are: translation of written materials, grant writing assistance, transcription, video or audio applications, interpretation for phone or video meetings (and this is mainly because we’re not able to meet in person right now, and that is dependent on scheduling of course) but those are some of the examples that we are able to provide. Reach out to us if you have any requests or questions about how we might support you through the processes.

Alright, group agreements. Group agreements allow us to share space as a group, to support and listen to each other and to not make assumptions about where any individual person may be starting from. As many of you saw in the link that I shared today with the zoom invitation, I shared the agreements that we use for our peer assessment committees. Those are actual agreements that we ask our assessment committees to commit to, along with a commitment to equity, before they assess any of our programs. You can have a look at those specific agreements that I emailed you to better understand how your application is being considered. But that being said, group agreements are flexible and adaptable and can be co-created in any kind of group or space that you’re sharing.

For the purposes of this online session, I’ve chosen a few agreements that I think are valid that we could hopefully all agree to today. Those are: sharing language that respects everyone. Not interrupting others and keeping our mics on mute unless we’re speaking. Being mindful of how much time and space we each take up in discussions and making time and space for others to speak. Recognizing that vulnerable interactions can occur and creating space to acknowledge and discuss hurt or offense if it does. We acknowledge that we are all learning, and may be at different places on our journeys. We will be patient with ourselves and others as we remain open to learning. We acknowledge the difference between intent and impact, and that the impact of our words can sometimes be harmful, even when the intent is not. Any participants who use harmful or disrespectful language or who are actively disregarding the group agreements will be asked to leave the space today, and if they choose not to leave, they will be removed. I am using my home setup, which is very complex, so forgive me for any discretions. Anyways, group agreements: We hope that these kinds of agreements help set up expectations for sharing space in order to better hold ourselves and each other accountable in conversation. If you have any further questions about group agreements. We’d be happy to share more about that outside of the session.

Okay, now here we are… the Project Grant. This program is intended to provide one-time project funding to support artistic projects that exemplify what our artistic community has to offer and ensures that citizens of Calgary, Mohkinstsis continue to have access to meaningful artistic experiences. We believe that artists living and working in the city of Calgary is a fundamental public good. So, this does not mean that your project must take place here, but it does mean that you will need to connect the project back to how it impacts your work career or the communities here.

This program accepts applications from individual artists and artistic collectives. An artistic collective is a group of artists who work together in an ad hoc, casual or more informal way. A collective applying to this program cannot be registered as a nonprofit society or govern itself like a nonprofit.

While artists can be working in any discipline, at any stage of practice, we do exist to support professional local artists. So, what do we mean by professional? A professional artist is an artist who is actively pursuing a career in the arts, and who has invested in the development of their own artistic skills, voice and goals. Professional artists may have formal training, may have shared their work publicly and have been compensated for their work and have a relationship with their artistic communities and peers. In contrast to that, an amateur artist could be defined as someone who does not intend to pursue a career in the arts, is not yet approaching their practice in a professional way, or who has not yet invested in the development of their artistic skills, voice or goals.

But keep in mind this is an open working definition, so if you’re unsure about eligibility just reach out to us, and have a conversation with me about where you’re at within your practice, what your relationships are, and what your commitment and intentions are, and we can go from there.

Applicants to this program may apply for up to $10,000 to put towards their project, and the total pool of funding available for this program is $750,000. You may have noticed that the overall pool was reduced from $850,000 as $100,000 was relocated to short-term relief funding for individual artists in April and May of this year. The maximum request amount was also reduced to $10,000 from $15,000, in recognition of the significant need in the art sector at this time. We would like to see a higher number of artists supported through this program this year.

You may apply for only one project, per individual or collective. We will not accept more than one application for the same project, and any given project cannot receive more than one grant from CADA per calendar year. This would include if you received a grant for a particular project from the Original People’s Investment Program, or the Rozsa Foundation’s Online Programming Grant, which we partnered on. But if you can present a brand new or distinct phase of a project that you received funding for, you may be eligible—so just talk through that with us if you have any questions.

This program has one application intake, meaning there’s only one deadline to apply this year, and that deadline is July 27, 2020 at 4:30pm Mountain Standard Time, which is exactly three weeks from today.

If you’ve applied to our programs in the past year or two, you may remember that we were using a two-phase application process. We were planning on continuing that process this year but due to COVID-19, and the need to pause all of our regularly scheduled programs to administer emergency relief funding, the decision was made to run this program in one phase in order to get funding out more quickly this year. We may however return to a two-phased process in the future, as there were many benefits for assessors, staff and applicants, particularly with higher volume programs.

So, if anything regarding this program timeline has to shift, applicants will be notified as soon as possible, but the current goal is to have final notifications emailed out by late September. This is important to consider if your project is fully reliant on receiving this grant. If you are successful in this program the earliest you’ll likely receive funding would be October. It’s usually a few weeks after you’ve returned a signed investment agreement, so just consider that when you’re planning your timelines and cash flows.

What is a peer assessment? Assessment is the process of reviewing applications to granting programs, usually in order to determine if they will be funded. Calgary Arts Development primarily uses independent arm’s-length assessment committees made up of artistic peers and community members to determine successful applications. The membership of each committee is selected by CADA staff to reflect the broad diversity of Calgary and its artistic communities, including but not limited to, artistic discipline, gender, sexuality, age, ethnicity, religion, beliefs, nation, physical and neurological identities.

There’s usually about five to seven members on each assessment committee depending on the program. We have posted the full assessment committee Terms of Reference on our website with the guidelines, and I’d encourage you to read through those terms in full to understand the responsibilities and expectations that our assessors are committed to. The assessment committees for our programs have exactly the same guidelines and criteria as you do to work from – there are no hidden criteria! Assessors are kept confidential and anonymous until next year, when a full list of assessors is posted as part of our annual report. If a committee member has submitted an application to the program as well, they will not assess their own application or any applications where they have declared a conflict of interest.

So, we have a formal Conflict of Interest Policy that we use. We are paying assessors a wage for doing this work. If you know of anyone who would be a good assessor for our programs, there is a nomination form on our website, which I’m sure Melissa will share with you, or you can send us an email—and you can nominate yourself or anyone else and we are actively looking for new assessors in our pool this year so please do nominate.

All right, so what is a project? In this program, a project is considered to be something with a specific outcome, a specific set of goals and distinct beginning and end date. Projects might include the creation, research, development, or production of work. They might include the presentation or sharing of work, or a project might include artistic or professional development opportunities such as residencies, workshops, conferences, or mentorship. It may also be a combination of a number of those things. If you have questions about if your project fits into this program, please reach out and we can talk about your proposal.

You can apply to this program for a full project or a distinct phase of a larger project, so long as the phase has its own specific beginning and end dates and goals. You can apply for almost any expense that is directly related to your project. I’ll go over eligible and ineligible expenses next. Projects funded through this program must be complete by December 31 2021 – so it’s over a year away. Please keep in mind that we are unable to fund projects retroactively, which means that you cannot apply for a project that will already be fully complete before the program deadline, which is July 27, 2020. That being said, it can already be underway by that date, just not fully complete.

Most expenses related to your project are eligible so I thought I would start with ineligible. I’ll just pop them all up. We are not able to fund lost wages or salaries, meaning that we cannot directly cover lost income from you taking time off of your day job or other work in order to undertake your project. We are not able to fund tuition, or any costs associated with a credit, degree or diploma, granting program. This includes any costs for artistic work related to that educational program. Lastly, we’re not able to fund the purchase of capital expenses over $1,000 or capital expenses that are not directly related to the project. A capital expense refers to a major purchase of equipment, land or buildings; things that outlive the life of the project. Some examples of capital expenses might be the purchase of a new laptop, a kiln, a camera, lighting equipment, major hardware or software, etc. That being said, you can rent any of that equipment or put up to $1,000 of this grant towards the purchase of those items, if you are able to show how the remainder will be covered.

Eligible expenses—there are lots. As you can see, most expenses related to a project are eligible and some are even encouraged, such as paying artists fees to yourself and any artists that you are collaborating with, engaging or hiring. Most of these expenses are pretty self-explanatory but I will speak a little to subsistence expenses, which are expenses like rent, food and child care.

This is the first year that we’re offering these expenses as eligible within a project grant, but if you are thinking about asking for subsistence to be covered you’ll just need to have a conversation with our staff first. And this is because, because this is a project grant, the impact is really specifically tied to the outcome of the work. So more often than not, we would actually look for you to pay yourself to do the work of an artist in the form of an artist fee, rather than in the form of subsistence.

This shifts the context of how you and assessors understand how you value your time and your work as an artist. That being said, we want to acknowledge that in some cases and for some projects having the ability to cover something like childcare outside of your own artist fee is necessary in order for you to undertake the work and complete your project.

Keep in mind that quite often you won’t be able to deduct subsistence costs come tax time. So typically, you can only deduct expenses directly related to the artistic work of the project. So, anything you keep as income, such as an artist fee and potentially subsistence will be taxable as income—other income. I will be touching more on taxes at the end of the presentation but if you have specific questions about your expenses and what is eligible please let us know and we can chat through it.

All right, project types. So, as I mentioned earlier, our programs are peer assessed by multidisciplinary committees, meaning we do not split up applications by discipline, or have disciplines specific juries as a lot of other funders do. Well, maybe not a lot but some. There are a few reasons for this but the biggest one is that many artists themselves are moving away from discipline specific practices, and more and more we see artists, defining or describing their practice as multi-disciplinary interdisciplinary post-disciplinary or even transdisciplinary, and do not ask me to define some of those.

That being said, assessing all of the applications to one program using one committee can be very challenging, depending on the volume of applications we receive. This was one of the reasons that we had implemented a two-phase process in the past, but as you know this year we’re not able to do that. We also don’t have a solid idea of the number of applications we might receive this year, or the types of projects that artists may be applying for this year, and that’s largely due to COVID-19 the pandemic, restrictions on gatherings and travel, the availability or access of rehearsal spaces or performance spaces. So, there may very well be an influx of creation based projects or shifts in the type of public sharing or programming that we see in projects, but we don’t want to make any assumptions.

If we do receive a very high volume of applications to the program this year, it may not be reasonable to assess them all in one batch using one committee. We may need to look at ways to stream applications into two groups, using two committees. So, in order to assess applications in a reasonable timeframe, this may be something that we do. If we do make any decisions on how we will be assessing these applications or how they will be streamed, we will share that with applicants.

The project types—this will be a drop-down question directly in the application and the project types is a really helpful tool used partly to center the assessors on how the applicant is viewing their project for themselves. It’s also a way to easily see how applicants are considering their work. For example, if they select creation, research and performance, we will expect to see them speaking to all of those elements in their application. It may also be a tool that will help us stream if we do decide to stream by type of project. I just wanted to share a little bit on that.

Next is the criteria. The criteria for this program are artistic impact, community connection, and planning. In previous iterations of the project grant, we’ve used similarly to these criteria: artistic impact, public impact and planning—we just changed the wording for public impact and moved that to community connection and we’ve also played around with the weighting of each criteria. In the past they were weighted equally, and this time around we are weighting artistic impact and community connection slightly higher.

The criteria for all projects applying to this program are the same, regardless of the type of project, though you might emphasize or focus on one particular area of the criteria more depending on what you’re proposing. In other words, you’ll approach each of these criteria differently depending on the focus of your work. For example, a creation phase or a research project will have a very different type of community connection or public impact than say a project that involves public presentation or community engagement. If you’re proposing a creation or research project the community impact might be based more on the future potential of the work and the way you’re considering your audience or communities during the creation process.

So, let’s dig into each of these in a little bit more depth.

I’ve just put up the actual definition for artistic impact, taken directly out of the program guidelines. So, I won’t read through them, you can take a look but I’ll remind you, here about that value that I spoke to earlier about authenticity, and having a critical self-awareness of your practice. So how the assessors understand what artistic impact means and how you’re meeting the criteria is based on what you tell us about what is important to you and your practice, what your goals are, and how you intend to undertake your practice and your project. So, before you even begin writing, you’ll want to take some time to come to a clear understanding for yourself of what you believe constitutes quality of artistic work within the context of the project you’re proposing. Who are your artistic community members for this project? How will you undertake your artistic process?

I want to acknowledge that we do use the term high quality here, and I want to clarify that high quality can mean many, many things, depending on the context of your work and your proposed project. It can refer to the technical skill involved in creating the work, it can include the aesthetic of the work, or the artistic processes used to create the work. High quality also refers to the way artists approach and understand the time, resources, rigor and investment that they put into their professional practice. The quality of your work will be measured against what you tell us your artistic goals are. If the goal of the project is to focus on the artistic output, tell us what artistic success means to you. If the goal of the project is to focus on community engagement, tell us what doing good community engagement means to you. Artistic quality will also be subjective so it’s important to guide assessors in understanding how you consider quality in your own work.

There will be a specific section in the application where you will actually speak directly to artistic impact. But keep in mind that the assessors will be reading and considering your application holistically, meaning that there might be other parts of your application that speak to artistic impact as well.

I’m going to add this chunk in here too. I threw it in last minute—I don’t know if it makes sense but… being authentic means having a sense of critical self-awareness about your practice. You should be able to be honest and show an awareness of where you are in your practice and career, how you fit into your communities, and what growth and success mean for you. Being able to recognize the challenges or barriers that you might face as an artist actually represents potential, thoughtfulness and intentionality about the way that you undertake your work, and it creates an opportunity to see how an investment in your practice might in fact leverage you into finding solutions to those challenges and barriers. It’s very tempting to only paint a rosy picture to funders in a grant application and we understand that, but demonstrating that you’ve actually taken the time to think and reflect on how you undertake your work or challenge your own assumptions about how you undertake work, shows the assessment committee how you are well set up to steward a public investment in an effective way.

Community connection is the second criteria. Similar to artistic impact, it’s important to reflect on who your communities are, or who you would like them to be, how you might connect with them, and why your project is important to the communities you’ve identified. Defining your community (or communities) will allow you to better understand what it means to have an impactful relationship with them. Depending on your project, your communities may be audience members, participants collaborators, volunteers or other artists. Your communities may also be geographical, cultural, academic or artistic disciplines specific. While we know that many artistic practices may not necessarily put a primary focus on community engagement or connection, we want to open a conversation for every applicant to say what community means to them and how they think their art contributes to that community. And so again, similarly to artistic impact, you will have a section to speak directly to this criterion, but again holistically there may be other elements of your application that help paint a more fulsome picture of the impact on community or public.

The last criterion is planning. The primary elements of your application that will relate to this area are your project description, your project budget and project timeline. But again, always think holistically in terms of your application. Try to keep all three of these criteria in mind as you work on writing and crafting your project.

Now I want to make a special note here in the planning elements, about COVID-19 and the fact that we are in very much uncertain circumstances within the art sector as well as the general public. If your project plan involves any aspect of public gathering or presentation, we strongly recommend that you consider how this might be impacted if various government restrictions and recommendations continue (such as social distancing, caps on group sizes or gatherings, availability of venues, travel restrictions, etc.). Take time to reflect on what you have learned about the current circumstances thus far, and share how you are considering these in your project plan and include any necessary contingency plans in your application.

We understand that it will be difficult to plan projects with any real certainty, but it will be very important to be realistic about what is feasible to demonstrate your thoughtfulness and consideration and to build trust and confidence in the assessors who are reviewing your application. There’s always going to be a certain amount of flexibility in project granting. Funders understand that timelines, budgets and plans may shift as you begin undertaking your work, and we want you to be able to adapt as needed. If things do shift between the time that you submit your application and the time that you receive a notification in September, reach out immediately and update us – we may be able to update key elements of your application as it’s being assessed. And of course, if you receive a grant, and any major shifts occur as you are working on the project, always notify your funders to ensure that the shift doesn’t affect the grant investment. In most cases, especially right now, so long as the project goals are being met any shifts will likely be accepted. Transparency is key.

All right, scoring matrix. We’ve developed a scoring matrix to assist in your reflections, the reflections of assessors but also applicants. So, it’s important to review the definitions for ‘weak, fair, good, strong and exceptional’ (they’re in the guidelines), as you work on your application. So, you’ll note that the scoring matrix intends to help you navigate how to approach your application and how assessors are going to navigate personal bias around things like taste, aesthetic, processes and focus on scoring according to how well artists understands themselves, and how well they’ve made a case for why they do what they do and how. So, I won’t read out all the definitions for all these scoring ranges, but I will read ‘exceptional’ and I’ll read ‘weak’, just so you get a sense of the range.

An exceptional application: Responses to application questions are clear, relevant and directly address the criteria. The applicant demonstrates a deep understanding of their role in their communities, or their artistic discipline. The application provides a clear and detailed description and plan for the project. The application creates overwhelming trust and confidence that the project will be completed as described, and that the applicant will reach their goals. So, on the opposite end of that a weak application is defined as responses to application are insufficient and do not address the criteria. The applicant does not demonstrate an understanding of their role in their communities, or practice, or artistic discipline. The application does not provide enough information about the project or their plans. The application does not provide evidence to create trust and confidence that the project will be completed as described, and that the applicant will achieve their goals.

And the ones in between are in between.

We basically expanded the definitions of the criteria, as well as expanding a scoring matrix because we were made aware that while assessors and applicants have a general sense of what we’re considering and asking for in an application, this provides more clarity and allows for more nuance in the assessment conversations. You are being asked to make a case, so an “exceptional” score isn’t that the art is good, or that the art is exceptional. It’s actually that you’ve made a case for why this investment is going to impact you and how it’s going to help you achieve your goals, you’ve shown that you have a clear understanding of your community and your practice and your discipline – all the things that basically create trust and confidence. I guess in contrast to that in a “weak” application, it doesn’t matter how great the art is or the project idea is if you haven’t answered the questions thoughtfully and thoroughly and demonstrated that you have that awareness and those plans in place.

So, Melissa shared a couple examples with me that I thought were really helpful, so I’m just going to read two of these examples. Say ‘Artist A’ creates work or programming that you don’t personally enjoy, but they have clearly articulated why it is important to them and their communities. They clearly understand their artistic vision and who their communities are, and they approach their planning and research responsibly. They are more likely to end up with a strong or exceptional score.

So, opposite of that ‘Artist B’ creates programming and work that you love, but they have not answered the application questions sufficiently, they do not have a clear relationship with their communities and they have not demonstrated an awareness of their role in arts communities or the sector here. They might be more likely to end up with a score between fair and weak. So, using the approach of one size fits one: what is relevant, important and reflective of each artist in terms of their starting place and in their community.

Next, I’m going to go through the application checklist. This is a list of all the things that you’ll be asked to provide in your application and we’ll dig into a few of these a bit more. The first few items are easy to enter information such as your contact info, project name, how much you’re requesting from the program, start and end dates for your project, and the project type, which I went over earlier.

You’ll also state your discipline and the number of years you’ve been a practicing artist. And then you’ll be asked to upload your artistic resume or CV, which we will talk about in a moment, and you’ll also introduce your artistic practice. Your introduction to artistic practice is also sometimes called an artist statement or an artistic practice statement. The project description will provide an overview of the who, what, when, and where of your project, while the artistic impact and community connection sections will allow you to dig more into the WHY of your project; the goals, the impacts and the outcomes. The project timeline or work plan and the project budget will be uploaded items that will help you demonstrate your planning, or in other words the HOW of your project.

There’s also an area to provide additional support material as needed. And there’s a detailed version of this checklist in the program guidelines if you’re like me and you like to work through lists or checklists, as you work on an application. Oh, and lastly, something new this year you will see directly in the application is a voluntary demographic survey.

We’ve begun collecting voluntary demographic information from applicants. These questions are an important part of our aim to increase understanding at an aggregate level of the individuals seeking funding, while providing the art sector with much needed data on the demographics of its workforce. Completion of the demographic questions is not required. It’s being collected on a voluntary basis. You’re not required to complete the questions but you can choose which questions not to answer – there will always be a prefer not to answer option. The information provided in this section will not be used in the application process or in the assessment and answers will not be provided to assessors. In short, your responses to these questions are voluntary, will remain anonymous and will only be shared in combination with many other responses, meaning they will not be connected to you personally. So we do encourage you to fill that out in your application.

Next is a resume or a CV. A resume or CV can be a really helpful tool for assessors to view alongside your written introduction to your practice. It helps to give a better understanding of your artistic history, achievements, growth and community. Your resume should only include things that are relevant or related to your artistic practice and work, so there’s no need to include jobs or education that wasn’t related to your practice, so say if you have a day job, you don’t need to list out all of those. Try to make a resume that is specific to your artistic practice. It doesn’t need to be in any particular format, but it should be clear and easy to read. So typically, a date list format from most recent to least recent activities split into like categories, is the most common form. Make sure you include dates and location of work, and maybe a brief description if it isn’t obvious. If you’re applying as a collective, please include all of the members resumes in a single PDF, along with the collective CV if you have one, and upload that as one document.

So, your artist statement or your introduction to artistic practice is basically the first introduction to you, that the assessors will read. This should demonstrate who you are, what kind of work you make your process (or processes) for making work and why it is important to you. Remember the context matters, the type of artistic statement that you would normally submit to a company or a gallery show or as program notes is going to look a lot different than the type of statement you’ll be providing with grant applications. It should not be about the specific project either, but rather about your overall artistic practice and goals. This is where you’ll really have the opportunity to tell assessors what you value as an artist, or as a collective, and what is important to you.

Remember that this introduction provides the most significant context for how they understand your project proposal. They’ll be looking at how the project aligns with what you’ve already told us about your goals and values and how it fits into your overall practice and the ability to create artistic and community impact through your work. With all this said, artists statements shouldn’t be more than about a 300-word overview, and they should be easy to understand, so don’t think of an artistic practice statement as a manifesto or a piece of art in and of itself. It should be concise and helpful and provide an overview of your work and what’s important to you.

Your project description. This is 300 to 600 words in the application. You will describe your project including what will occur, when it will take place, where it will take place and who will be involved. This is basically a helpful overview of the project, and you’ll have a chance to dig more into the why and how in the following sections.

The artistic impact section asks: What are your artistic goals for this project and why? You can think of goals as being related to growth, outcomes, processes, relationships, professional development, etc. Make sure to connect your artistic goals to your overall artistic practice. You will also be asked, what will artistic success look like for you in this project and why? So, success you could measure in terms of quantitative measures, like numbers or amounts, or qualitative measures like values, feelings or qualities.

How do you measure success, learnings or impact? What is helpful and meaningful for you to capture? Granters and funders don’t just ask about how you’ll measure success with your work to “tick a box”. It’s not about saying what you think we want to hear, but about defining what success means to you, so measuring success should be meaningful. For example, we don’t just track numbers for the sake of numbers we track them because they help us show the scale of impact. It’s about the quality of the work, not the quantity, so you can think about what your artistic goals are and how you will know if you’ve achieved them. It’s good to start thinking about this now. Developing your own systems for measuring success or learning can be highly beneficial to your own growth, development and impact in your practice.

Plus, we use the stories and feedback that you provide us in final reports to report back to The City and continue to develop the case for investment in the arts, and to evaluate our programs internally.

Your goals don’t have to be philosophical or about extreme learning or experimentation – they can also be simple. I’ll give you some examples. If you’re creating a brand-new body of work, but you’re experimenting, or testing out a new process, in this case success might look like you learning that this process is beneficial, or you discovering that it was terrible, and you’ll never do it again, or that it had a negative impact on you or your work. That’s still valuable learning. Again, going back to that idea of failing forward, so success doesn’t mean you have to succeed or be perfect in your project, it’s about learning as well.

You could also measure things like achieving a higher production value, so if you’re utilizing new processes or equipment and trying to improve your production value, describe what that means to you and how you’ll know if you’ve achieved it. It could also be about achieving a particular level of output, or even just coming out of a project feeling proud about what you’ve done – so it can be sort of that internal feeling stuff. Basically, what we don’t want you to say I don’t know. I don’t know how I’m going to measure this I’m not actually going to do any self-reflection. Try to think of some of the ways that are helpful to you to evaluate your artistic impact, your goals and the success of your project.

Next is community connection. This section asks: Who are you connecting with in this project, and how are you planning on connecting with them? This could include, like I said, artists, collaborators, partners, mentors, participants or audiences. And if you’re not actively engaging with community during the phase of the project that you’re applying for, describe how you’re considering them.

For example, if your proposed project involves creation, with little to no interaction with anyone else, then share who you imagine your eventual public might be, and how you’re considering them while you create or how you might interact with them in the future. The second part of this question is: why is it important to connect to the communities you’ve identified and how will you know if you’ve been successful? If you’re not actively engaging with community at this phase of your project, describe how considering them in this phase will contribute to the success of the project, or future connections, if that’s a goal of yours.

Similar to artistic impact, evaluating the success of your community connection or public impact goals, must be meaningful to you. For example, if you’re planning on doing public events, you should be tracking how many events you do, how many people attended, how many people paid for the event, etc. but the numbers alone don’t mean anything on their own. They also need context and qualitative data to help support the story. For example, how your audience members responded to your work. So those are some things to consider when writing about community connection.

On to project budgeting. In this program you’ll be asked to use our standard budget template and upload it to your application. It’s a pretty straightforward template that asks you to list out all of your project expenses, and any project revenues, including the amount that you’re requesting from this program. As you enter dollar amounts into the template, it will automatically do the math for you. Be sure to include the entire scope of your project. If your overall expenses exceed the amount that you’re requesting from the program, explain how you will cover additional costs—so your budget should balance to zero.

Remember to use the notes section to clarify any line items, show calculations and specify whether other revenue or income support is confirmed or pending. In-kind support refers to things that have been donated or gifted to you or given to you for free. They still have monetary value so you’ll still include them in your budget. In-kind donations could be something like getting a rehearsal space for free, or someone volunteering their time, or your auntie cooking the food for the rehearsals and workshops or something like that, but put a value or dollar amount on that as well.

Some of the common questions that we get about budgeting are: should I apply for the full amount of $10,000? Will I have a better chance if I apply for less? Usually, your planning will not be as strong if you start from $10,000 and work backwards building your project around that number. Instead what we encourage applicants to first think about is: think about a project that will fall within the general range of $10,000 and imagine how you think the project would run ideally and then build your budget off of that. If you go over $10,000, then you can reconsider the scope of your project, look for where you can cut back on costs or think about other funding to supplement your overall budget. The best chances are to apply with the project you’ve done the best planning for. So, apply for what you need.

What if your project costs more than $10,000, is another common question and, like I said, you’ll have to show how you will fund the remaining expenses; either through fundraising, other grants or sponsorships, or perhaps your own personal contribution. It’s okay if you are applying for additional funding outside of this program but it won’t be confirmed before the deadline—that’s alright. If you do as much as you can to show that you’ve been planning and applying, the assessment committee will be asked to make decisions based on the assumption that you have any additional expenses covered. And definitely use the notes section I can’t emphasize that enough. If you can break down the line items in your budget to show how you’re calculating to just be more specific, it’s very helpful.

The timeline, your project timeline or work plan should tell us how you will accomplish your project. It should include all the important artistic and community related activities, tasks, events, milestones or deadlines. It should include dates, locations, who is involved and a description of each item if it isn’t apparent. Please make note of things that are confirmed or pending where necessary. There’s no standard template for this, you can create and upload any documents in any format. Depending on your project, it might make sense to use a calendar format, a dated list format where you’re specifying what tasks need to be done each week, or by month, or by quarter. Or you might use some sort of flow lane charts. The most important thing though is that it’s clear and intuitive and easy to read. So, we don’t recommend using things like a Gantt chart or complex color-coded timelines that require a legend to understand. Keep it simple and clear for the assessors.

If your project plan involves any aspect of public gathering or presentation, again, we recommend that you consider how this might be impacted by COVID-19 related restrictions. Reflect on what you’ve learned, consider those and include any contingency plans in your timeline as well, if necessary.

There will be four optional upload fields provided in your application. And that’s for applicants to include additional files or links that strengthen your case or help assessors understand your practice or your project better. So, while support material is optional we highly recommended it. The support material the material you provide should be relevant and meaningful to your project proposal. You might consider including things that demonstrate the quality of your artistic work such as samples of your work, documentation of previous projects, information about your artistic process or background on your specific discipline. Those are just some examples.

You might also include things to demonstrate your capacity to undertake the work, so this could be examples of previous work or previous projects, planning documents, mock ups or drafts of your project. Support material might also include documentation or information that demonstrates your research and planning around the project such as quotes, invoices, contracts or more detailed planning documents. Or you might include things that demonstrate the partnerships, or relationships that you have related to the project, whether it be a letter of support from a collaborator or a presenter, or correspondence that shows a commitment or planning for the project. Whatever you choose to include, just make sure that it elevates your proposal. So, a boilerplate letter or recommendation from a past professor or artistic director isn’t likely to demonstrate the potential impact of this particular project.

Each of the four upload fields has room for three megabytes, so feel free to combine multiple documents into one document. I should also mention that our grant interface doesn’t allow audio or video files to be directly uploaded. Instead, you’ll have to upload your video or audio to a file sharing site like YouTube, Vimeo or Dropbox and include the web link in the support material. And if the web link requires a password to access it, please provide that as well. And lastly, we recommend including a brief description of what you’ve shared in your support material areas in order to make it clear why you’ve shared what you’ve shared to the assessors.

Remember that you are not expected to be everything to everyone. Your application will not benefit from trying to write or represent yourself in a way that you think assessors might want to see. So, some of the tips I like to give are using plain language, rather than academic language or “art speak”. Try to be clear and concise with what you’re sharing, avoid jargon, or technical language, remembering that the assessment committee will be made up of people from many different practices and experiences. Don’t assume that they will understand your specific practice or language.

If you’re speaking about something that is unique to your discipline or your practice, be sure to define it. It can be very tempting to paint a rosy picture of your practice and work, but having an appreciative sense of what challenges and barriers, you might experience in your work and how you might move through those, actually demonstrates capacity, awareness and potential. Do your research, make sure that you can back up what you are stating in your application. It is also really helpful to have someone who may not be familiar with your practice or your discipline have a look at your application. The questions that they ask may help uncover some of the gaps or assumptions that you’re making, and same for if I’m reading your application, I have a broad understanding of many disciplines, but not a deep deep understanding of every single one, so I’m happy to look over applications and give you a bit of an outside eye.

And lastly, I would say, thinking of grant writing as storytelling can be really helpful. We talk a lot about that at CADA. This again does not mean that the application should be an artistic expression or demonstration of your fantastical writing skills but that your goal is to paint a full and complete narrative of who you are and why and how your project has impact in your practice and in your community. This means that assessors should see a logical through line from what you tell us about yourself as an artist to why this project is important to you and how it will have an artistic and public effect in the final outcome or the completion of your goals.

What about taxes? If you’re an individual, or you’re representing a group of artists in the form of a collective, CADA is required to issue a T4A form for the full amount that you receive from this grant. Under the CRA (Canada Revenue Agency) guidelines, only the amount of money that you pay yourself from this grant is taxable as income. In order to show that the remaining grant amount was spent on materials, rentals, paying other artists, (all your project costs) you should track all of your expenses, keep your receipts and have written proof of payments to any artists.

Since we’re not legally able to provide tax or legal advice we always advise reaching out and talking to a tax professional, if you have specific questions because things can change based on your own individual context. We offered an artist tax workshop at the end of last year maybe ,or who knows how long ago, and we are hoping and planning to offer a few more financial literacy workshops in the fall or winter of this year so please stay tuned for those, but if you have questions about how to track your expenses please let us know.

We’re on to the Q&A period. I’ve shared my email address here and as it states on the slide, I can answer questions and provide feedback on your application, up to one week before the deadline. That being said, I will be answering questions and working right up to the 4:30pm deadline on July, 27, but if you’re looking for feedback on your application—the earlier the better because I don’t want to have an influx of requests during those last couple days as I might not have enough time to give you feedback, or you might not have enough time to process it and make any adjustments.

So, I’ll now open up the floor to questions. If you could please try to ask questions that you think the entire group might benefit from, that would be great. You can save really specific questions about your own project for a one-on-one conversation, or a phone call with myself so that we can really dig into those specific questions in your own context together. I think Melissa will probably jump in on some of these as well if she likes or if I need her. I’m thinking we’ll start with any raised hands first and then move through any questions in the chat box that haven’t been addressed, if any, and then of course if we run out of time which I don’t imagine we will, we’ll follow up and make sure to answer all of your questions over email as well. Okay, I’m going to exit out of this presentation and stop sharing my screen.

Melissa Tuplin: Taylor may I?

Taylor Poitras: Yeah, please.

Melissa Tuplin: I just want to respond to Kevin. I don’t know if folks have been following along in the chat but our friend Kevin just now made a very good point that your taxes are on a calendar year. So, your T4A would be received for calendar year 2020, but some of the activities for this work may go into 2021, which means that it is likely that you won’t have spent the majority, or all of your grant at that point.

If that is the case, then it is possible to make an amendment to your tax filing in subsequent years to add those deductions, which we know does mean that some artists may end up carrying the tax burden of a portion of that grant. I did mention to him that we have some capacity to make some exceptions and do things like installment payments. We’ll do that on a very individualized basis, depending on your individual circumstances and then of course we will do our very best to connect you with tax professionals and resources. But do be aware, if you are successful in the program you will receive your grant amount in October 2020, that gives you three months to spend that money out, otherwise you will be carrying it into the following tax year.

Taylor Poitras: Thank you, Melissa. I see Claudia and Brian have their hand raised. Go ahead

Brian: Hey, how you doing? Little question about the budget. How do I add more lines to the downloaded template of the budget?

Taylor Poitras: Do you have it in front of you now and it’s not letting you?

Brian: No, I haven’t even filled it out yet but after I get down to the last line does it keep adding more lines for me?

Taylor Poitras: Yeah, if you go on the far-left hand side you’ll be able to right click on the row number and insert more lines as needed.

Brian: Perfect.

Taylor Poitras: If it doesn’t work though, let us know.

Brian: Great, thank you very much.

Melissa Tuplin: Taylor we have a question from Rosemary asking if you need access to log into our grant interface.

You don’t need to have permission from us to create a profile in the interface. That is only for the Alberta Foundation for the Arts and the Canada Council for the Arts. So, if you go to our grant interface you can create a profile for yourself.

Taylor Poitras: Yes, I didn’t go over that, but if you do not already have a profile made, you’ll find that on our main website ( You’ll click “grant login” (it’ll be in the upper right hand corner next to the search bar) and you can hit “Create Account” or “Login” if you already have credentials, but it will basically just ask you for your contact information, so nothing too complex, and then you’ll be able to access any applications in the interface that are open.

Melissa Tuplin: Our friend Tyler wants to know if there’s a time limit on support materials submitted, or a time limit that we’re giving the committee to review support materials this year.

Taylor Poitras: Yeah, that’s a good question Tyler. In the past we’ve said we will only ask assessors to read up to 10 minutes of support material and that was in recognition of the fact that sometimes applicants will put a lot of materials into their support areas and it makes the application considerably longer to review. While we’re taking out the time limit, I would encourage you to still be considerate of the assessor’s time and really be specific about what you’re sharing. So, if you’re sharing, for example, if you’re a script writer and you want to include a sample of your script, maybe don’t include the entire thing include like an excerpt; or if you’re showing a video, maybe direct them – if it’s like a half hour video, direct them to the couple minutes that are the most important. If you’re sharing your website, direct them to particular areas of your website or of the page that you’re sharing that you really want them to focus on, so that they can manage their own time. And I would also recommend putting the most important materials in support material area one, and then subsequently going down to two, three, four.

Melissa Tuplin: Thanks Tay. Okay. We have a couple of questions from Dean. Is it possible to receive feedback if your application isn’t successful, so you can learn where you were lacking? That’s the first one if you want to answer that.

Hi Dean. Yes, I do encourage asking for feedback before you submit, but of course if you go through the process and your application is unsuccessful we do offer feedback after the fact. And that was the same for if you are successful and you still want to hear what the assessors thoughts were, and any feedback on that – we’re always willing to do that and I would say this year we’re actually building in more intentional time for the program staff, such as myself, to dedicate a few weeks to just giving feedback because it is a bit of a process and it takes time. And so, we offer feedback in written format or I can do a phone call, which I usually prefer. just because I can also ask questions of you and it’s more of a conversation. But yes, always, always we will provide feedback.

Melissa Tuplin: Dean would also like to know what is a typical artist fee?

Taylor Poitras: Ah, so that’s a good question. There are a few resources that are discipline specific that provide standard artists fees or rates. So, for the visual arts there is CARFAC, so depending on your discipline I can share different resources. There’s another one for dance, there’s other ones for other disciplines. That being said, you are also welcome to determine your own artists fee depending on the amount of work you’re inputting, you could do an hourly rate, you could kind of play with that however you see fit, but those resources I have might be a good starting place to begin thinking about what’s equitable and what’s fair.

Melissa Tuplin: I just popped in the CARFAC, which is the recommended fee schedule for visual arts and it’s a good starting point for many disciplines and then as Taylor said if you want resources for the others, shoot her an email. Dean has one last question. Why don’t we recommend Gantt charts for timelines and what other styles would we recommend?

Taylor Poitras: Yeah, I mean that may be a personal bias of mine as I’ve used Gantt charts in the past. I think for your own personal project planning, you can use whatever system makes sense for you, but in terms of presenting it to assessors, if it can be more simple, I would encourage simplicity because they’ll be reading it in a PDF format and sometimes when you upload something like a Gantt chart, it will go across many pages and be difficult to understand. So, if there’s a way to simplify it great – but you can use that on your own end of things then I would encourage that.

Timelines for the most part what I see is either calendars, depending on the scope and scale of the project. If it’s a two-week project you can break it down pretty detailed. If it’s a year-long project that might look a little bit different, you might go month by month, or phase by phase. It’s kind of whatever makes sense to you in terms of being able to understand and read it clearly. But I’m happy to give feedback on timelines as well.

Melissa Tuplin: Lily was wondering if funding can cover the cost to rent a studio space for the duration of time needed?

Taylor Poitras: Absolutely, yes, studio space or renting of space is an eligible expense. And yeah, you would want to kind of tie it to the amount of time that you’re using it for the project specifically.

Melissa Tuplin: Can community engagement consist of communities that the applicant would like to connect with, but doesn’t currently have a formal connection to?

Taylor Poitras: Yes, absolutely. I think I mentioned it briefly but I would reiterate that there are a lot of folks who are perhaps new to the Calgary arts community, or maybe even moving into a different discipline. And those relationships might be nonexistent or they might be very new. We recognize that everyone is in a different place and may have a different relationship with the communities here, so you can definitely frame your project and your answer to those questions around community connection, in terms of what you’re seeking – so maybe not what you’ve already obtained but who are the communities that you would like to connect to and why and how do you plan to hopefully engage them and what would come of that. So, it can be forward looking in that way.

Melissa Tuplin: Thanks Taylor.

Hi Louise, Louise is wondering if you could clarify around our retroactive funding. If we will cover projects that are already underway?

Taylor Poitras: Yes, so the distinction there is, we can’t retroactively fund something fully. So, a project can be already started, you could be doing it right now, you could be doing it throughout the summer as we’re assessing—the distinction is that it can’t be completed before July 27th (the deadline day) because that would be a fully retroactive project, and to be assessing projects that have already happened, it’s just a bit of a different context for the committees, so that’s why we have that rule in place at the moment. Do you want to elaborate Melissa on that at all?

Melissa Tuplin: Not really.

Taylor Poitras: Okay, great. Thank you for being my Vanna White of question taking.

Melissa Tuplin: Hi Heather Blush is asking, (ooh this is a fun one Tay!) I am part of two collectives with different goals and work, but essentially the same people, can we apply for a project for each, or do you have to choose one?

Taylor Poitras: Okay, I’ll take a stab and let me know if I’m completely off. I would imagine that if there are two distinct projects, you could put two applications into the program but they would have to be led by different people, so you Heather could lead the application for one collective for a particular project and then someone else from your other collective could lead the application for the other project. Would that be correct?

Melissa Tuplin: Yes, that’s basically it. What I would also add to that, though, is depending on how long these collectives have been working together, providing a very clear description of what your mandate is as a collective and why it is that they are two distinct groups doing two distinct projects. I would say that if (not that I am assuming that it is) but if there were two brand-new collectives that don’t have a history of work working together, and we saw that there were basically an overlap with the same people.

I would estimate that an assessment committee might look at that as a form of double dipping. And so, that is exactly where Taylor’s comments around having very clear artistic practice statements and goals becomes extremely important to understand the context, and why it is that these need to be separate groups undertaking different types of work. I will also offer that this is going to be an extremely competitive program, and it’s not a light application. So just kind of bear that in mind as you put in two applications that will functionally be competing against yourself.

Taylor Poitras: Yeah, thank you. That’s great additional context.

Melissa Tuplin: I think there is just one last question in the chat here: could you clarify the difference of when something in the project will happen to write about in the project description versus the project timeline?

Taylor Poitras: Yes, hi Monda. Thanks for the question. So, when I mentioned the project description, that’s only going to be a few hundred words describing the who, what, when, where of the project. So, the when will be more general. The project description is basically a helpful overview of the nuts and bolts of the project, whereas the timeline you’ll have an opportunity to be a lot more specific about the different tasks and activities that happen between the start and end date, and actually even maybe in advance of when your project starts and afterwards, in terms of reflecting or measuring success or evaluating. So, the timeline is much more detailed the project description is like an overview of the project. Does that answer your question?

Melissa Tuplin: We had a question about how many applicants we estimate that we will get. For context, last year we ran two separate programs with two very different goals, but to a total of $800,000. We had over 200 applications to each of those programs and that equaled 350 unique applications from artists in the city.

I’ll be very frank. I should turn my camera on so you can see my face. Hi everybody, I’m Melissa. In the context of the world that we live in right now, because the Alberta Foundation for the Arts elected not to run their spring programs for individual artists, and as we are in a very uncertain, unstable, precarious time for artists, I do expect will receive between two hundred and three hundred applications for this program. Which, like Taylor said, was part of the reason we decided to drop the request amount to a maximum of $10,000 which I know is a very challenging thing because making a meaningful investment in artists’ practice right now is fundamental to ensuring that you can continue to create excellent, high-quality, wonderful work that is accessible to the citizens of Calgary, but we did want to ensure we could reach as many folks in the community as possible.

So that was part of the reason we decided to do that. I would say the other part is we did make a bit of a hypothesis that we wouldn’t see quite as many applications that were carrying expected expenses at this point around large productions or presentation of work, as we remain in a period of time where it’s unclear at what point we’ll begin to share art in a really public realm, and I think in particular for some of the disciplines that have continued restrictions on them. So that was part of the part of the reason as well. So yes, it will be competitive. We can all do math. The minimum number of artists that we could find through this program is 75 ($750,000 divided by 10).

Taylor Poitras: Okay, I don’t see any other hands raised at the moment. Does anyone have other questions for us we can wait a few minutes if you need a moment to think. We have the space till five so lots of time.

Thanks Barbara.

All right, and I think Melissa mentioned earlier in the chat that I’m happy to share the slide deck with my speaking notes as well. We will be posting the live video recording to the website. I imagine in a few days, maybe next week—I don’t know who is best at doing that as Amy Jo is out of town.

Melissa Tuplin: I would expect it’ll take a little bit longer. As you know, we are running quite a few public town halls right now and the cleaning of the recordings and the transcriptions does tend to take a little bit of time, so we will try to get it as quickly as possible knowing that the deadline is coming up.

But yes, those will be shared as publicly as possible. Taylor has this RSVP list to at least forward the slides along to you, which I imagined Taylor you’re perfectly okay with folks passing on to their friends.

Taylor Poitras: Yeah, I will make sure my notes-to-self, if any, are appropriate. We’re happy to share that and I’m available—this is my mission my, my focus for the next three weeks is literally just to help applicants with their applications, give feedback and answer questions so I am yours. Reach out. Don’t be shy. Let us know what you need.

Melissa Tuplin: I’ll just add one final note that Wednesday we are doing yet another virtual public Town Hall. This one is actually very different than the ones you’ve been doing recently and is specifically going to be an opportunity for the folks at Stone Olafson to come and share about a few of the research projects they’re doing on behalf of the Calgary arts sector. So, it’ll be a really interesting opportunity to get a sense of the kind of the state of the arts in Calgary right now, and how that is impacting and affecting the decisions that we’re making about our programs and our work into the future. And that will also be an opportunity for us to talk about the emergency resiliency funds that we received from The City of Calgary. Unfortunately, on direction by the City of Calgary those funds are only available for registered not for profit arts organizations. So that is unfortunately a limit and again why it was so important for us to ensure that the amount of money in this program remained as high as possible. But if you are working with any other nonprofit arts organization at this time would be beneficial to listen in on that. And if you have not signed up for our newsletter, you can do that from our website, please do so those will be coming out more frequently as we move forward. And other than that, like Taylor said we are available at any point—make good use of Taylor as she is deeply committed to you.

Melissa Tuplin: Alright, my friends, thank you very much.

Taylor Poitras: Thanks everyone.

Oh yeah. Oh wait, if you’re still on. We have a grant writing workshop with Elephant Artist Relief (EAR) on Friday. If you look up Elephant Artist Relief, or I think CARFAC is also sharing it. I will be presenting again through EAR so you can share that with folks, and I think they’re doing one-on-one grant writing workshops, so if you want feedback that is an option. Last plug. I’ll let everyone go now. Take care. Bye.

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 20:15 For those joining us now, guidelines can be found here:

Aimee-Jo (she/her) 27:31 Sorry I will have to exit. My two year old is not zoom friendly.

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 28:29 Sign up for future Town Hall sessions here

Heather Blush 29:51 bravo to CADA for taking these strong stances.

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 30:09 Other definitions can be found in the Glossary section of the Investment Program FAQs here

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 31:47 Accessibility & Accommodation Policy

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 32:28 The Group Agreements that we ask all of our peer assessment committees actively commit to and uphold

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 39:34 To read more about what the peer assessment committees are asked to do, see the Terms of Reference

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 40:14 If you would like to be considered for one of our peer assessment committees, you may nominate yourself, or someone else, here:

Rosemaryallan 43:50 can a capital expense be used if the equipment is second hand?

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 45:09 Hello Rosemary, any purchase of equipment that will live beyond the timeline of the project would be considered a capital expense, even if it secondhand.

Judithmendelsohn 45:19Bravo for allowing for child care expenses!!!!

Kevin Jesuíno51:17 Are funds able to be disbursed, if successful, after Jan 2021 for tax purposes? Suddenly adding $10,000 to your income at the end of 2020, while expenses are in 2021, can mess with your taxes. CADA should really consider giving out funding at the beginning of the year as opposed to the end of the year. The CRA sees all $10,000 as income if you have not had any expenses associated with that income by the end of the tax year. Does that make sense? (ie. I’ll be taxed on all $10,000 if I have not made any expenditures to that $10,000 by the end of Dec 2020)

Rick Rogers 53:34 well said

Lili 53:35 is your definition of authenticity written? 🙂

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 53:43 Hi Kevin, We may have some flexibility on disbursing funds in instalments or in early 2021 dependent on individual circumstances. Originally this program was meant to run earlier in the year, but was put on hold to be reassessed in the context of the pandemic. Because we are on a calendar fiscal year with the City of Calgary, we are relatively limited in when funds can be disbursed within that time period but are endeavouring to find a balance with successful grantees based on individual circumstances.

Kevin Jesuíno 54:58 Thanks Melissa.

Kevin Jesuíno 55:17 Also, will these slides be made publicly available?

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 56:04Yes, we will provide the slide deck as well as the full  recording of this session on the website.

Kevin Jesuíno 56:14 PERFECT! MERCI! 🙂

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 57:10 Lilli – we do not have a written definition of Authenticity, but approach it from the goal of meeting artists where they are, with an appreciation and curiosity about what you value about your own work and artistic practice.

Rick Rogers 01:18:47 have to go tysm for this Rick

Kevin Jesuíno 01:23:23 NOTE REGARDING TAXES FOR ALL ARTISTS (see my above question)

Rosemaryallan 01:24:38Is there a necessary Number to use to upload with the application? My  understanding is that there was a number that was needed????

Tyler Longmire (he/him/they/them) 01:24:40Question: is there a time limit on support materials  submitted? Or a time limit the jury has to review any individual grant’s support materials? Thank you.

Dean Laverick 01:26:18 Do we receive feedback if not application not accepted so we can learn where we were lacking?

Dean Laverick 01:26:32 What is a typical artist fee? Hourly?

Lili01:26:40 can funding cover the cost to rent a studio space for the duration of time in the appropriate facility needed?

Dean Laverick 01:27:28 Why not gantt charts? What other timeline styles would you suggest?

E (he/him) 01:28:22 can community engagement consist of communities we hopefully would like to connect with, but currently do not have any formal connection to?

Louise Day 01:28:26 Hi Taylor I understand no retroactive funding but you mentioned something about it will cover things that are already underway. Can you please clarify?

Heather Blush 01:29:17 I am part of two collectives with different goals/work but essentially the same people. Can we apply for a project for each, or do we need to choose one?

Tyler Longmire (he/him/they/them) 01:30:08 thank you for answering my question Taylor!

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 01:31:09 CARFAC Alberta Recommended (Visual Arts)

Monda 01:32:03 Hi Taylor, can you clarify the difference of ‘when something in the project will happen’ to write about in the project description vs in the project timeline.

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 01:32:22 Dance

Maggie (she/her) 01:33:21 a good performance resource of industry standards

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 01:34:59 Thank you Maggie, that is VERY helpful!

Louise Day 01:35:58 HI Melissa. Thanks for answering question!

E (he/him) 01:37:56 how many applicants do you estimate you’ll get?

Monda 01:38:50 yes thank you

Rosemaryallan 01:40:58 Thanks for this Melissa

Barbara Amos 01:41:40 A good clear presentation. Thank you!

candace (she/her) 01:41:45 Thank you for this information! It was really helpful.

Tyler Longmire (he/him/they/them) 01:41:46 thank you Melissa and CADA staff, the support is very much appreciated!

E (he/him) 01:41:48 thanks for the info!

Louise Day 01:41:48 Thanks Taylor and Melissa this has been very informative

Heather Blush 01:42:11 This has been great, thank you – it must be strange to have all this silence, but I for one have appreciated all the info and feel well informed.

marce merrell 01:42:23 Thank you Taylor and Melissa. Much appreciated!

Taylor Poitras CADA (she/her) 01:42:31 Thanks everyone

Jane Pierce 01:43:07 Thank you so much!

Rosemaryallan 01:43:09 Thanks so much Taylor and so informative!! Great to know for additional help to connect!

Allan Rosales 01:44:44 Thank you Taylor and Melissa!! I appreciate you both and Calgary Arts Development.

Tyler Longmire (he/him/they/them) 01:44:49 thank you!

Maggie (she/her) 01:45:15 it that different from today?

CADA Melissa Tuplin (She/Her) 01:45:31 It will be slightly different!

Monda 01:45:44 Thank you very much 🙂

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