Tools for artists

With resources on artist’s fees, exporting, taxes, grants, copyright, insurance, marketing, and more – CARFAC has what you need.

Are you a fantastic artist but not sure how to earn money from it? Look no further.

Some basic information and guidelines are available for everyone. Detailed info sheets, toolkits, services and discounts are for members only.


The following documents are available as downloads FREE to Members. Email your request here and we’ll send you the link.

CARFAC Maritimes Gallery Survey

Published in 2011, the CARFAC Maritimes Gallery Survey contains information on artist-run centres, public, commercial, school & university galleries, art centres and co-op galleries throughout the Maritime Provinces: New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. Artists may find this guide useful when planning their marketing strategies and deciding where and how to submit their work for exhibition and/or sale. It is also a beneficial tool for galleries, dealers, government agencies, collectors and the general public when assessing the market and finding a source for the artwork created in our provinces.

Advisory Notes

Advisory Notes are produced by CARFAC as an informational service to provide a summary of issues of interest to practicing visual artists. They are intended to be used as guidelines for the reader, not to replace professional advice, which may be required before taking action. Neither the authors nor CARFAC can assume liability for problems that may arise from their use or for any errors or omissions contained herein. Views expressed in Advisory Notes are not necessarily those of CARFAC.

Entry Guide to the Los Angeles Art World for Canadian Visual Artists

With a letter to CARFAC members from the Canadian Consulate General, Los Angeles.

Art on the Menu

Before entering into an arrangement with a place of business, artists are advised to protect themselves with a written agreement.

Artist/Dealer Checklist

Information for artists entering into agreements and helping artists resolve problems that occur during the relationship.

Community Development for Artists

The need for artist salons is regarded as critically important to the development and continued growth.

Artist/Mural Checklist

A reference for visual artists when entering into negotiations with the commissioner of a mural.

Artist/Exhibition Checklist

A reference for visual artists when entering into an agreement for the public exhibition of their artwork.

Artist/Public Gallery Exhibition Agreement

As arrived at by CARFAC Ontario and Ontario Association of Art Galleries.

Business Entities for Artists

The three main business entities as utilized in Ontario

Copyright and Commissioned Works

Works produced under a true commission arrangement where the artist functions as an independent contractor.

Copyright for Visual Artists

Summarizing the copyrights that commonly pertain to visual artists.

Exhibiting/Selling Outside Canada

Summarizing the copyrights that commonly pertain to visual artists.

GST and Artists

Summary of the Guide on Arts and Entertainment.

Guidelines for Professional Standards in the Organization of Juried Exhibitions

Method of Jurying and Artist/Organizer Responsibilities.

Guidelines for Professional Standards in the Organization of Fund-Raising Events

CARFAC SASK recommends that these standards be applied to all fund-raising activities involving the use of artwork.

Guidelines for Organizing Art Commission Competitions

Guideline for the private sector, institutions, and government in the selection of art for public places.

Health Hazards and Safety Tips for Artists

Artists use many of the same hazardous chemicals found in industry, but unlike industrial workers, artists use these chemicals in their studios without adequate precautions and ventilation.

Hidden Dangers in the Sale of Artworks

There are several legal matters that arise during the course of the sale of artworks that can cause the artist consternation and regret unless they are carefully attended to.

Insuring Your Artwork

Insurance is a highly complicated and individual matter; one company may interpret an artist’s situation quite differently from another.

Marketing Strategies for Visual Artists

An artist’s personal viewpoint, based on their experiences as both an artist and an art dealer over twenty-five years.

Model Releases

The Term “model release” is widely used in the arts community but is seldom defined and not always clearly understood.

Notes on Art in Public Places

You notice postcards of the mural you did three years ago for sale in a gift shop. You can sue for copyright infringement…right?

Original Prints and Reproductions

Artists whose work includes the making of multiples should be aware of current practices and be conscientious in their own policies and record-keeping in order to protect both their own reputations and the integrity of private and public collections.

Preparing For Your Tax Return

A little advance preparation and planning can avoid a lot of headaches.

Retransmission Rights

Since January 1st, 1990, Canadian cable companies have had an obligation to pay the copyright owners whose works they retransmit.

Sample Artist/Mural Contract

A model for negotiations between an artist and his/her client regarding the commission of a mural.

Trade Marks and Trade Names

Acquiring rights for trade names or trademarks.

Using Photographic Images as Source Material

Many artists create images and three-dimensional works in a variety of media and use photographs, or newspaper or journal images, as a source without realizing that this may give rise to legal problems.

Warehouse Studio Health and Safety

Artists living in warehouses are particularly vulnerable to health and safety risks.

Writing for Visual Artists

As a visual artist you will be called upon to write throughout your career.

(The following is from CARFAC National’s site )

Artist’s Fees Guidelines

How much should you be paid when your work is exhibited, used in catalogues, etc? CARFAC has guidelines.

Gallery Guide for Artists (2012)

Listings from 400 galleries in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland with information on submissions, artist’s fees, framing, shipping, and more. Members can email CARFAC National to ask for a copy.

Copyright for Visual Artists

Basic information about copyright for visual artists is available for everyone.
A more detailed toolkit about recent changes and how to protect your work is only for members. E
mail CARFAC National to ask for a copy.

Selling and Exhibiting Artwork Outside Canada

Don’t get stuck at the border because you waited until the last minute to get your paperwork. Planning ahead will make the process much smoother and save you a lot of stress.

Certificates of Canadian Origin

This certificate identifies original works of art of Canadian origin, allowing them to be temporarily exported abroad without GST implications. Members get a discount. Learn more.

International Association of Art card

Grants free or discounted entry to many museums in Western Europe and elsewhere. IAA cards are available to CARFAC members only. More about the IAA card.

Resolving Legal Issues

Have a legal problem? CARFAC has a list of resources for resolving legal problems. Members can email CARFAC National and ask for a copy. We can also link members to other legal resources and services – give us a call or send us an email, with information about your specific issue.

Artist’s Contracts

Contract templates designed by lawyers to protect your rights as an artist. Far cheaper than having a lawyer write a contract from scratch, this book could also save you legal fees if you ever had a problem. For sale through CARFAC Ontario – members get a discount.

The Visual Artists’ Guide to Estate Planning

Creating an estate plan is not a simple task, but the long-term benefits of a plan will prove, in the end, to be very helpful to you and to those you care about most. For sale through CARFAC Ontario – members get a discount.

Information for Artists

Indispensable guide for artists with chapters on: Income Tax, Insurance, the Grant Application Process, Business Structure and Bookkeeping, Publicizing Your Work, Art Rental Programs, Copyright and more! For sale through CARFAC Ontario – members get a discount.


CARFAC members benefit from workshops offered across the country, on topics such as contract negotiation, tax preparation, marketing, grant writing, and more.

Best Practice Standards

How can artists, galleries and dealers work together respectfully? These guides cover dealers, public galleries, art commissions, juried exhibitions, fundraisers, and aboriginal arts. Developed by CARFAC Saskatchewan. A version for Quebec is also available.

Canadian Artists Representation Copyright Collective

Through its licensing services, CARCC can help an artist to protect copyright and to benefit from it. Collective administration of copyright means that there is strength in numbers. Some of the copyrights administered by CARCC are Exhibition, Reproduction, Reprography, and Telecommunication.

Copyright, all rights reserved. No part of these publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, or stored in a database and retrieval system, without the prior written permission of CARFAC and/or the authors.

Canadian Artists' Representation/Le Front des artistes canadiens