Over the last several years I have been applying to several artist grants and have not received anything to date. The last two I asked for feedback and found out what I can work on for the next ones that I apply for.
Yes, images are very important, but the written portions of what you say are even more so it seems.
Here is what was said about my last one:
"The panelists did enjoy your work. They appreciated your examples of contemporary stained glass, in particular the curvilinear Flight panels. In skimming through your application, I think an area for potential improvement is your statement of need and your artist statement. In your statement of need you clearly articulate what you need these funds for, which is really important and great. Adding in a component that really demonstrates why this award is important to your practice, and what receiving this award would mean to you could really strengthen your application, as this was a point of focus within panel deliberation, would be a good way to build on this. I really appreciated the discussion of where you find inspiration for your work, and the joy your work brings, and I think deepening this description and really going into the why of how you find inspiration, or why you love creating in glass would be a way to further the impact of your current clear descriptions and really bring your message home to the reader."
I had written what was asked of me, but going further with it seems to be very important. So, those of you who are applying for grants and shows, make sure your written portions are very thorough.