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RMIT University Library - Learning Lab

Artist statement - editing


Edit and edit again...

Editing is an essential step in the writing process. The first draft of your statement may be too long and disorganised as you elaborate on ideas from previous stages.

Here are some suggestions to make your writing more engaging:

Refine your text by removing unnecessary words or any duplication of ideas. You can also remove any ideas or topics in your draft statement that you decide are less important than others – which is important when writing a short statement.


Reorder sentences or paragraphs if they don’t flow. Even if you don’t follow a traditional writing format, you want your text to make sense and be easy to read.


Record video/audio of yourself reading your text, then play it back to ensure it flows and makes sense. Use a text-to-speech app if you can’t record your voice.


Repeat these steps until you have a clear and concise statement that is ready for presentation.


Simplify your sentences so they are not too long. A good test of sentence length is to read it out loud without taking a breath. If you run out of air, you may need to break your sentence into two, or make it shorter by removing and reorganising words.


Read your whole statement out loud to test for grammatical errors and ensure it sounds like your “voice” – like something you would say in conversation or when discussing your work.


Ask someone who knows your work to read your statement – does it match what they know about your work? And finally, ask someone to read it who doesn’t know your work – can they understand it?


Reflect - save your statement with the date you wrote it. Remind yourself to come back to your statement over time and make new versions as your creative practice changes, or as you need to rewrite it for new professional opportunities. This can become a useful reflective exercise that informs your whole creative practice.



Learning activity

Write your own short artist statement

(practical writing activity - 30 minutes)

Write your own short artist statement that describes your creative practice. Use your mind map and other activity outcomes to start the process, using the learning resources provided here to help you.

Challenge: to practice writing a concise statement with impact, try and limit your text to between 50-100 words!

Share your statement with others and get some feedback. Make sure you save it somewhere with the date so you can return to it and reflect/review over time.


Paper and pen/pencil or any text editing application.