Botanic Gardens Trust, Sydney, Australia

Education




Margaret Flockton Award 2014 entry details

The Margaret Flockton Award commemorates the contribution Margaret Flockton made to Australian scientific botanical illustration. Click here to view the Margaret Flockton Award 2014.

The Foundation & Friends of the Botanic Gardens, as a major fundraising organisation and supporter of the Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust, is pleased to sponsor the Margaret Flockton Award for Excellence in Scientific Botanical Illustration. Through its members, the Foundation & Friends is committed to funding projects that embellish and enrich the four sites of the Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust, allowing the Trust and its staff to continue to pursue excellence in all that they do. The Foundation & Friends also holds an annual exhibition of botanical art: Botanica - the Art of Seduction - see Foundation & Friends Events.

The Award and Exhibition

  1. The Margaret Flockton Award is open to Australian and overseas artists producing scientific botanical illustrations of a high standard.
  2. Artists who have previously won first prize in the Margaret Flockton Award from 2013 will not be eligible to re-enter the competition.
  3. Prizes of AU$5000 and AU$2000 respectively will be presented to the first and second best entries, and up to three Highly Commended certificates will be awarded to works considered to be of an exceptionally high standard.
  4. The prize winners will be announced on the opening night of Botanica - the Art of Seducation exhibition on Friday 23 May 2014. Prize winners will be notified in the week prior to the opening.
  5. The judges will select the works for inclusion in the Margaret Flockton Award Exhibition to be held at the Joseph Maiden Theatre in the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney from Saturday 24 May to Sunday 15 June 2014. A selection of entries will be exhibited. Inclusion of artworks in the exhibition and the manner of framing and exhibition of works will be at the sole discretion of the Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust.

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Instructions to artists - artwork

  1. Entries to be submitted by close of business, Monday 7 April 2014.
  2. Works must have been produced after April 2012.
  3. There are no entry fees for the Margaret Flockton Award and Exhibition.
  4. Each artist may submit up to two original illustrations. Reproductions or copies will not be accepted. Only original black and white (for example pen and ink, graphite or scraperboard) illustrations, either published or unpublished, will be considered.
  5. Only full plate illustrations will be accepted (inclusive of habit study and diagnostic features of the species). Inclusion of scale bars, whilst not compulsory, is highly recommended.
  6. The illustration should include a small, neatly written legend, with plant name and all lettered components, at the bottom of the artwork, outside of the frameable image area (i.e. At least 3 cm below your illustration.)
  7. Entries should be on paper, illustration board, scraperboard or drafting film with an image size no larger than A3 size (295 mm x 420 mm). Larger works will not be accepted. Image size MUST allow a minimum 3 cm border for mounting and framing.
  8. Entries should be submitted unframed. Illustrations selected for exhibition will be mounted and framed in our standard exhibition frames.
  9. First and Second prize-winners will be paid by electronic transfer in Australian dollars soon after the awards are announced. Artists within Australia will receive payment for artworks sold (minus commission and any taxes if applicable) by electronic transfer soon after the exhibition closes. Overseas artists will be paid by International Money Transfer in Australian dollars and will need to provide their bank account information upon request. Overseas artists should note their banking institutions may charge fees for international transactions.

Instructions to artists - paperwork

  1. Each illustration must be accompanied by a signed entry form. When signing this form you are agreeing to all of the conditions of entry including the post and insurance conditions. Please read all conditions carefully before signing.
  2. Incomplete entries may not be considered eligible. Please tick the checklist on the sales and postage form to ensure all information has been supplied.
  3. A taxonomic description (either published or unpublished) must be provided with each illustration. The taxonomic description should be typed (not hand written) on a separate sheet of A4 paper. This will not be framed with the art work but will be available in a separate folder during the judging and exhibition. Examples of such descriptions can be found in local Flora publications or on PlantNET, our on-line resource on the Plants of New South Wales.
  4. Each illustration is to be accompanied by a fully completed label template with the scientific name of the plant, medium, artist's name and the legend of the drawing. These will be printed and displayed with each work. The template should be completed and emailed to botanical.illustration@rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au. If completion of the template is not possible, please email the Word document or include information with the posted entry.
  5. For the exhibition we request each artist to send a brief biography (see biography information) with a scanned portrait or suitable passport photo of the artist included. These will be displayed in a folder during the exhibition. We ask that you fill out the artist biography template provided and preferably email to botanical.illustration@rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au or alternately mail it with the posted entry. (Note - the provision of biographical information or artist's photo, whilst preferred, is optional).
  6. Sales and tax forms must also be completed. Overseas artists must complete and post a Statement by Supplier for the exemption from Australian Goods and Services Tax. Australian artists please read the GST Explanation form and ensure you post either a Statement by Supplier and/or ABN and GST registration details.

>> Complete entry form
>> Complete sales and postage form
>> Complete label template
>> Complete declaration of GST form
>> Complete statement by a supplier
>> Complete biography
>> Download biography information
>> Download biography example
>> Download pricing artwork and the GST

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Postage

1. Artworks should be addressed to: The Margaret Flockton Award
c/- Illustration, National Herbarium of NSW
Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust
Mrs Macquaries Road Sydney NSW 2000 Australia

2. UPDATE - Important information

In 2012, when returning artworks to overseas artists via a door-to-door express courier service, a number of parcels were held at foreign borders and large duties charged to the artist for their release. After extensive negotiation with customs officials, the Margaret Flockton Award Committee generously paid the fees on behalf of the artists. Following a review of postal procedures, the Margaret Flockton Award Committee in 2014 will be returning to the Australia Post airmail system (unregistered), as previously used 2004-11 without issue.

3. As import and export laws, duties and taxes vary from country to country, we strongly advise each artist to seek advice regarding the export and re-importation of artworks from and to their country. The following information is currently available on the Australian Customs and Border Protection website and is provided here as a guide only for imports into Australia.

Goods with a declared or assessed value not exceeding A$1,000

If your goods arrive in Australia by mail and have a declared or assessed value of A$1,000 or less, the goods may be imported free of duty, taxes and Customs and Border Protection charges, unless they are alcohol products or tobacco products. Apart from alcohol and tobacco products, those goods will be cleared by Customs and Border Protection and delivered by Australia Post without you doing anything.

Goods with a declared or assessed value over A$1,000

You will be sent a First Notice by Australia Post if you have imported goods with a declared or assessed value of more than A$1,000.

In this case, you need to lodge an import declaration to Customs and Border Protection for the goods. The declaration will be assessed for duty, GST and Wine Equalisation Tax (if applicable).  An import processing charge will also apply. Customs and Border Protection will advise you of the amount you need to pay before your parcel will be delivered to you.

Customs and Border Protection cannot allow goods with a value over A$1,000 to be delivered by Australia Post until an import declaration is made and any liability for duty, taxes and charges is paid in full. There may also be AQIS requirements to be met before Australia Post can deliver your goods.

>> Click here for more information

4. Each artist is now required to nominate on the Sales and Postage Form the value (in Australian dollars) to be stated on their Customs Declaration and Postal Insurance forms for return shipment of artworks (NOTE: In some countries Import Duties are charged for any package valued over $1. Please seek qualified advice).

5. The Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust and the Foundation and Friends of the Botanic Gardens will not be liable for any fees, duties or taxes associated with the import or export of entries in the Margaret Flockton Award.

6. By accepting the Terms and Conditions of Entry the artist is responsible for any fees, duties or taxes that may arise whilst the parcel is in transit, both to, from and within Australia.

7. Neither the Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust nor the Foundation and Friends of the Botanic Gardens will be responsible for any loss or damage of works in transit. Artists are free to nominate transit insurance and if possible retain a high resolution digital copy of the artwork for their records and publication.

8. To minimise the possibility of damage, all works are to be submitted flat, between two sheets of acid-free paper and packed between sheets of thick board (i.e. mount board) or similar solid, waterproof material. Artists are asked to label their packaging to enable ease of repacking. Where possible, all artworks will be returned to the artist re-using their own packaging.

9. After judging (or in the case of exhibited works, at the conclusion of the exhibition period), all works will be returned to the artist via Australia Post airmail.

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Judging

1. Entries will be assessed in accordance with the following criteria (see below for more detailed information on the preparation of drawings): accurate interpretation and portrayal of plant characters and diagnostic features, technical merit, reproducibility, composition, artistic merit.

2. Works should be submitted as ready for publication and must be capable of being reduced to 2/3 of the original size without loss of detail. A major criterion of scientific illustration is that images should be clearly and simply reproduced through the printing process. Entrants should note that illustrations may be scanned during judging to assess the reproducibility of the image. All care of artworks and rights of artists will be respected and no illustrations will be commercially reproduced from this process.

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Insurance, commissions and rights

1. Entries displayed in the exhibition may, with the artist's (or artist's agent) permission, be offered for sale at the price listed on the entry form (this includes a commission of 20% of the sale price exclusive of GST, payable to the Foundation and Friends of the Botanic Gardens). The exhibition organisers reserve the right to determine the final sale price in consultation with the artist.

2. The Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust will insure all works while on site. The insurance will be to the agreed sale price (nominated on the Sales and Postage Form) or valuation of works not for sale. Neither the Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust nor the Foundation and Friends of the Botanic Gardens will be responsible for uninsured loss or damage exceeding the insured amount.

3. Consent may be sought from individual artists to allow images of their works being reproduced, and their biographical information being used by the Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust or the Foundation and Friends of the Botanic Gardens for the sole purpose of promoting the Margaret Flockton Award and Exhibition.

4. The Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust and the Foundation and Friends of the Botanic Gardens are the sole owners of the information collected from the entry forms and any other information submitted and will not sell, share or rent this information to others except for the sole purpose of advertising or promoting the Margaret Flockton Award and Exhibition.

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Enquiries and further information

Further enquiries should be directed to:

Lesley Elkan and Catherine Wardrop
The Margaret Flockton Award
c/- Illustration, National Herbarium of NSW
Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust
Mrs Macquaries Road
Sydney NSW 2000 Australia
Telephone 02 9231 8133
Email: botanical.illustration@rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au

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A guide to scientific botanical illustration

The science of botany requires plant taxonomists to describe plant species in both words and drawings, with botanists preparing a detailed description of the plant and the artist producing an accurate illustration.

Taxonomic illustrations are normally published in scientific journals as highly detailed black and white drawings (primarily pen and ink, more rarely pencil) representing aspects of plant morphology essential for identification.

The Margaret Flockton Award is unique in art awards in that it recognises and promotes scientific botanical illustration as opposed to botanical art.
 
With the above in mind, the evaluation of entries is based on the following criteria:

  • accurate interpretation and portrayal of plant characters and diagnostic features noted in the botanical description
  • technical merit
  • reproducibility
  • composition
  • artistic merit

When considering these broad criteria, the following are also taken into account:

  1. Precision and accuracy The correct botanical detail, with all plant characters and diagnostic features accurately displayed.
  2. Reproducibility The image must be capable of being successfully scanned and reproduced (often reduced) without loss of detail. Very dense (black) or light detail may not reproduce well. A major criterion of scientific illustration is that images should be clearly and simply reproduced through the printing process.
  3. Good composition The plate should be laid out to give a balanced presentation so that the overall effect is aesthetically pleasing. This balance is best demonstrated by the careful placement of the primary subject. In other cases balance may be the result of careful placement of the dissected details of the plant.
  4. Use of scale bars, whilst not mandatory, is preferred Great care should be taken in giving the correct scale of each feature. If possible, avoid using multipliers eg 'x3' or 'x0.5' to indicate the size of features, as this becomes meaningless if the drawing is used in a publication and printed at a different size; the use of a scale bar is accurate regardless of changes to the size of the image.
  5. Quality of the printing/writing on the drawings It is much better to use hand writing on a hand drawn image. Keep writing neat and legible and not overly large - poor penmanship can ruin the effectiveness of an otherwise good illustration.
  6. Signature The signature should be consistent on all botanical illustrations. The preference is to keep the signature neat and small with the date (with year in full) with the signature, e.g. 2012 not 12.
  7. Printer's marks Scientific drawings produced specifically for publication may include a variety of registration marks, pencilled letters, small areas scratched back, whited-out or replaced. Such alterations for printing will not impact on the judgesí opinion so long as they do not appear in the final, reproduced image. 

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Judges' comments on previous submission

  1. A serious botanical drawing is a scientific statement. Precision and accuracy are essential.
  2. Some drawings have lacked sufficient botanical detail, while too much detail detracts from the overall presentation and impact of the main subject.
  3. Some entries have used mechanically printed labels on their drawings and the judges feel that these could detract from the archival quality of an entry.
  4. Less successful entries have shown inconsistent and uneven line work, inconsistent styles of shading or excessive stippling that appeared to be included just to cover a space rather than to reveal texture or form.
  5. In some cases, stippling tended to obscure or confuse the images of the structures.
  6. In general, more satisfactory and clearer results are obtained by using one medium only, rather than a combination (such as ink with pencil), especially with a view to reproduction of the works.

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Biographies

Visitors to past exhibitions often ask about the artists who have their works displayed. Now a folder containing biographies of the contributing artists is compiled each year for visitors to refer to. This adds interest to the exhibition by providing the viewer with some information about each artist, their background and current work in the field of illustration.

For your biography a simple and discreet template has been provided on the link below with fields for your name, date and place of birth, education and career highlights, and publication, exhibition and prize details. A simple portrait shot is also desired and if you have a scanned head and shoulders image you can simply click and drag it to the spot delineated in the template. Otherwise a digital photo can be emailed to botanical.illustration@rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au which can then be added to your biography or a physical photo can be sent with your entry package and illustrations. Once completed please email your biography as an attachment to botanical.illustration@rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au.

Remember, the provision of biographical information and the photo is completely optional. 

>> Download biography information
>> Download biography example
>> Complete biography

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Pricing artwork and the GST

How to price an artwork for sale

If the artist does NOT charge GST:
Add the amount the artist wishes to receive, plus commission
(e.g. $100 to the artist + $20 commission = $120 sale price. When the item is sold the artist will receive $100.)

If the artist charges GST:
Add the amount the artist wishes to receive, plus commission, plus GST on the artistís portion of the sale price. 
(e.g. $100 to the artist + $20 commission + $10 GST on the artistís portion = $130 sale price.
When the item is sold the artist will receive $100 + $10GST =$110.)

>> Download pricing artwork and the GST information

MF-Logo-2014

Margaret Flockton Award 2013 winners

Vellozia-perdicipes
1st prize ($5000) - Rogerio Lupo from Brazil for Vellozia perdicipes sp. nov.

Lecomtella-madagascariensis
2nd prize ($2500) - Lucy Smith from the United Kingdom for Lecomtella madagascariensis

Cattleya-forbesii
Highly Commended ($500)- Klei Sousa from Brazil for Cattleya forbesiiDennstaedtiaceae
Highly Commended ($500)
 - Edmundo Saavedra Vidal from Mexico for Dennstaedtiaceae in Veracruz

Pellaea-rotundifolia
Highly Commended ($500) and People's Choice winner - Pauline Dewar from Victoria, Australia for Pellaea rotundifolia

Supported by

The Maple-Brown family

Foundation & Friends