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Photography & Fine Arts

The Big E Creative Arts Theme for 2020:


Use your imagination and create something that relates to “20”.

20 blocks in a quilt, 20 different stitches, 1920’s theme, Or. . . . . . .

Be creative!

The following Creative Arts information is from our 2019 Big E Fair.
Look for updated 2020 information by the end of May, 2020. If you have suggestions for 2020, please email CreativeArts@thebige.com

Thank you and we hope you will join us in 2020!


Sample of Photo Entry Tag emailed to exhibitor with acceptance email.  
Entry Identification
  • All exhibitors must affix an official entry label to the back of the photo that was emailed to the exhibitor with notification of acceptance. You may print the entry label in color or greyscale. Please trim to 8 1/4" x 6 1/2"
  • Put entry label facing up on the back at the top of the middle of photo as we affix sticky back hook and loop fasteners to the 4 corners of your photos for display purposes.
  • If you did not receive the confirmation email with an entry tag/Label and you have confirmed your name is on the list of accepted photographs to be displayed, please email tbrown@thebige.com.
Example of photo mounted to foam core with NO Matting.  


  • Entry Mounting and Size Limitation
    • Photo Size Range:8” x 10” to 9” x 12”, vertical or horizontal.
    • All photos must be mounted on 11” x 14” foam core that is at least 3/16” thick. No matting is allowed.
    • Please be advised that Velcro will be affixed to the back of each photo for display purposes.
    • Any exhibit not complying with these specifications may be disqualified and may not be displayed.
    • If an actual object does not “match” the digital image which has been accepted, (i.e., if the digital image has been manipulated for appearance) then the actual object will not be accepted for exhibition.
    • No hangers or frames of any kind
    • No cardboard
    • No tape that is not designed for photograph mounting

To mount your 8”-9” by 10”-12” photo onto 11” by 14” solid color foam core with NO Matting (Suggested instructions):

  1. Draw in light pencil, a rectangle on the center of foam core that is slightly smaller than your photograph to be used as a placement guide. You may also use an 11x14 mat with an 8” x 10” opening to trace a placement guide onto the foam core.
  2. Place your photograph face down on a clean surface. Apply double sided adhesive all the way around the edges, as close to the edge as possible and an adhesive strip in the center of the photo, or spray the back with an adhesive spray.
  3. Place your photograph in the center (both vertically and horizontally) of the 11” x 14” foam core using the guide you drew on in Step 1.
  4. Using a soft cloth, press down in the middle of the print. Then swipe from the middle out to one corner, smoothing the print down flat as you press down the adhesive on the edges. Continue swiping from the middle out to make sure the print is as flat as possible.
  5. On the back of the foam core, place the entry tag provided in the email that was sent with the confirmation email of your acceptance. The entry tag can be printed in color or greyscale. Trim the entry tag to approximately 8 ¼” x 6 ½”. This should be taped face up on the back of the foam core, top center.

All photographs and photographs of artwork must be submitted online
to be juried by August 1. Please submit photographs in JPEG format. Only those works selected will be invited to submit printed and mounted photos and art work for The Big E Creative Arts Competition. An email will be sent to entrants and juried results will be posted online by August 15 for notification of accepted entries. Award of premiums and awards will occur from the physical pieces after they have been delivered to the Creative Arts Department on photography receiving day and meeting all entry requirements.

Please read the rules carefully for details on submitting your photography. All those entering are required to read the Creative Arts Rules & Regulations in addition to the Department Rules.

August 1 Entry Form AND Photograph to be submitted online. https://TheBigE.fairwire.com/ No entries will be accepted after August 1.
August 2-14 Jury Review
August 15 Entrants notified by email
August 29 Receiving accepted entries 8 am to 6 pm in the New England Center
August 30 Judging, closed to the public
September 30 Release of exhibits 11 am to 7 pm
October 1 Release of exhibits 8 am to 1 pm
November 1 All unclaimed items become the property of Eastern States Exposition and will be disposed of as deemed necessary.

For additional Information, please contact Creative Arts at Creativearts@TheBigE.com or call 413-205-5015.

The Big E has an attendance of over one million visitors each year. Award sponsors provide valuable incentive for our exhibitors.If you would be interested in sponsoring an award for this contest please contact creativearts@TheBigE.com or via phone at (413) 205-5015.

Volunteering during the Fair entitles you to an entry pass as well as a vehicle pass. Please consider volunteering for Creative Arts as an avenue to share your love of the arts while chatting with the public and other volunteers.

Click here to learn more about volunteering.
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