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Guide to OAC Support Material

Support material is an important part of your grant application to the Ontario Arts Council (OAC). Read this page to learn how to upload support material through OAC’s online granting system, Nova.
 

The basics

At OAC, there are two types of support material:

  • Artistic examples present artwork. They include music, images, films, scripts, writing samples and more.
  • Support documents confirm or expand on information in your application. They include artist CVs (resumés), confirmation letters, contracts and more.

Each program has its own requirements for support material. Some support material is optional and some is mandatory.
 

On the application form in Nova, the Support Material tab will tell you:

  • what artistic examples and support documents to provide

  • how long they can be

  • whether they are mandatory or optional

  • other instructions


For a step-by-step demonstration on how to upload support material, watch this video:


 

videocam Video files

 

You can upload video files from your computer to your application or provide Vimeo links.


Video file uploads

  • Submit files in one of the following formats:
    • AVI
    • MOV (QuickTime Video)
    • MPEG
    • MP4
    • WMV (Windows Media Video)
  • The maximum file size is 500 MB.
  • Don’t use accents or special characters in your file names (for example, " ' ; : ~ ! % ^*). They may cause errors when you try to submit your application.

Vimeo links

  • Provide a link to a specific video, not to another page on Vimeo. The URL should look something like this: vimeo.com/0000000.
  • If your video is private, test the password.
  • If you reupload or change the video after the deadline, it will be considered ineligible.
  • Note that OAC doesn’t accept files hosted on other websites.

music_note Audio files

 

You can upload audio files from your computer to your application or provide Vimeo or SoundCloud links.


Audio file uploads

  • Submit files in either MP3 or WAV format.
  • The maximum file size is 20 MB.
  • Don’t use accents or special characters in your file names (for example, " ' ; : ~ ! % ^*). They may cause errors when you try to submit your application.

Vimeo and SoundCloud links

  • Provide a link to a specific video or track, not to a profile, album, playlist, etc. The URL should look something like this: vimeo.com/0000000 or soundcloud.com/artist/track.
  • If your video or track is private, test the password.
  • If you reupload or change the video or track after the deadline, it will be considered ineligible.
  • Note that OAC doesn’t accept files hosted on other websites.

image Digital images

 

Upload image files from your computer to your application.
 

Image uploads

  • Submit files in .jpg format only.
  • The maximum file size is 5 MB.
  • Don’t use accents or special characters in your file names (for example, " ' ; : ~ ! % ^*). They may cause errors when you try to submit your application.

description Written artistic examples (manuscripts, music scores, scripts, zines, etc.) and support documents

 

Upload documents from your computer to your application.
 

Document uploads

  • Format all files as PDFs.
  • Unless otherwise noted, submit documents in portrait orientation, not landscape.
  • For accessibility reasons, we ask that your documents use a sans-serif font of at least 11 points in size.
  • Don’t use accents or special characters in your file names (for example, " ' ; : ~ ! % ^*). They may cause errors when you try to submit your application.

Submitting strong artistic examples


Preparing your resumé, CV or bio

The OAC asks you to upload your resumé, CV or bio for two main reasons:

 
  1. To confirm your eligibility for the program. Some programs only accept applications from people who have reached a certain stage of their artistic career. This needs to be demonstrated in a CV or resumé.
  2. To provide context for your project. Your CV or resumé might help to demonstrate that you have a lot of relevant experience or training. On the other hand, it might show that you have less experience but that the project makes sense at this stage of your career and could make a meaningful impact on your development as an artist.

Your CV or resumé should list activities and accomplishments that relate to your role on the project. For example, let’s say you’re a choreographer who also works in marketing.When applying to OAC to work on a dance piece, there’s no need to include information about your marketing career, unless you’ll be applying your marketing skills to the project.

  • Artistic training 
    • This may include formal education in a university, college, or conservatory setting, but it isn’t a requirement.
    • This also includes artistic training acquired through mentorship, workshops, or learning from family members or Indigenous Culture Carriers.
    • You may also describe research and artistic experimenting, either self-initiated or tied to a residency program.
    • Youdon’t need to list individual college or university courses if the courses were part of your main area of study (for example, visual arts courses that are part of a visual arts diploma program).
  • Administrative training and experience
    • This may include formal education in a university, college, or conservatory setting, but it isn’t a requirement.
    • This also includes administrative training acquired through mentorship, workshops, or learning from other administrators, family members or Indigenous Culture Carriers.
    • You may also list administrative roles you have had or specific areas for which you have been responsible (for example, budgeting or marketing). These can be paid or unpaid roles.
    • You don’t need to list individual college or university courses if the courses were part of your main area of study (for example, administrative courses that are part of an administrative diploma program).
  • Artistic presentation and/or publication 
    • Provide specific examples of where your artistic work has been shared, such as performances, recordings, exhibitions, or publications.
    • For curators, programmers, presenters and literary editors, list examples of exhibitions, publications or events you have curated, programmed, presented or published.
  • Artistic awards and recognition: List any prizes, nominations, awards and grants you’ve received foryour work in the arts.
  • Artistic professional associations: List memberships in groups such as artists’ unions, creators’ guilds, arts service organizations and industry organizations.

In some cases, you can submit a bio instead of a CV or resumé. This is a much less detailed version of the information above, focused on career highlights. It should be one or two paragraphs long.

 

Preventing and solving technical problems

  • If you can, upload your artistic examples and support documents several days before you plan to submit your application.
  • Read the support material instructions carefully – even if you’ve applied to the same program before.
  • The larger the file, the more time and bandwidth it will take to upload to your application. It’s a good idea to reduce file size as much as possible.
  • After adding your support material, click the Validate button at the bottom of the screen and check for error messages. Resolve the error, save your application, and click Validate again.
  • The most common problems are:
    • uploads of the wrong file type or format
    • PDFs with too many pages
    • too many or too few artistic examples
  • If you need help, contact the OAC staff person listed on the web page for the program you are applying to.A screenshot of a program web page on OAC's website, highlighting the contact information box on the left-hand side.