-By Dan dos Santos

Many of us received Acceptance Letters from Spectrum this past week, while others had to come to terms with having their work rejected.

Obviously, being accepted into Spectrum is a happy occasion, and extremely well deserved. However, dealing with the rejection is a lot more difficult, especially if you’ve been trying year after year to get in. It’s hard not to be discouraged when you feel like you did your best, and it still wasn’t good enough. Trust me when I tell you, that feeling NEVER goes away. Rejection always stings.

I was extremely fortunate this year to be accepted into the annual again, and even more fortunate to be nominated for an award.

To the outsider, it may seem that the same professionals get in year after year with ease, while others continually struggle. But that’s not entirely true. What you don’t see amongst all those joyous acceptance posts on Facebook is the all of work that was rejected from those very same pros.

For every one piece I get in, usually four are rejected. And that’s after I’ve already culled them down to only my best works.

So, I thought it would be enlightening to showcase just some of the work that I submitted to Spectrum this year that did NOT get in.




And this isn’t even all of them!

Every one of these pieces, some of which were actually my personal favorites of the year, will NOT be included in this year’s annual.

Does that mean they aren’t any good? No. Does it mean I’m not any good? No. It just means that these particular pieces didn’t entice these particular jurors as a group, enough to garner sufficient votes. In fact, some of these very same pieces may be accepted next year by a different jury.

These rejected pieces also serve to make me more appreciative of what I achieved with the pieces that did get in, noticing qualities in them that I hand’t noticed before.

So, in celebration of all those who did NOT get into Spectrum, but keep trying year after year anyways, I salute you! Determination is one of the most important qualities an artist can have, and is an essential ingredient of success. I hope you all take this rejection in stride, and continue to strive for your goals!