Society of Decorative Painters -
393 N. McLean Blvd. Wichita, KS 67203-5968
Phone: (316 ) 269-9300 Fax: (316) 269-9191
Hours of Operation: 8:30 - 4:30 Central Time, Monday - Friday
Contact list with Emails and Office Phone Extensions
SDP Certification Program
SDP's Certification Program provides an opportunity for Society members to submit work to be judged for Certification. It is the goal of the Certification Program to create a climate for the improvement of painting skills and to provide members with recognition of excellence.
There are three levels of Certification. The first is that of Accredited Decorative Painter (ADP). The second is that of Certified Decorative Artist (CDA). The third is that of Master Decorative Artist (MDA). Members may start with either the ADP category or the CDA category. The CDA level of certification must be successfully completed in order to qualify for application to MDA certification.
The Accredited Decorative Painter applicant must pay the required fees and submit one piece of work for judging. The applicant is given a choice of painting either a still life or a stroke design. The applicant may enter only one design in any judging year. Click here for the Japanese translation of the ADP Certification.
The Certified Decorative Artist applicant must pay the required fees and submit one piece of work for judging. The applicant is given a choice of painting either a still life or a stroke design. The applicant may enter only one design in any judging year.
The Master Decorative Artist applicant must also pay the required fees and must submit three pieces of work for judging. The applicant must successfully complete all three categories (still life, stroke and floral), but need not enter all three or pass all three in the same year. However, the application fee must be paid each year the applicant enters a piece for judging.
1. An official application must be completed, signed and sent with payment to SDP, 393 N. McLean Blvd, Wichita, KS 67203. The order form and fees for the Official Certification Kit may be sent at the same time or ordered at a later date after review of the portfolio.
2. Upon receipt of the application and fees, an applicant number will be assigned and sent with the portfolio.
3. USE OF THE SURFACE IN THE OFFICIAL CERTIFICATION KIT IS REQUIRED. ONE KIT MUST BE USED FOR EACH PIECE TO BE ENTERED. If the applicant has a surface from a previous year, and wishes to use it, it is still necessary to complete an application to obtain a current portfolio and applicant number.
4. Each entry must be submitted on the surface provided in the kit, except that the applicant may substitute a wooden or masonite panel of the same dimension inside the frame provided. With the MDA still life category, it is required that a wooden panel be used. With the MDA stroke category, the tray surface is required. Please see “Instructions for Applicants”, included in the portfolio, for details.
5. STRICT ADHERENCE TO ALL TIME DEADLINES IS IMPORTANT. NORMALLY:
a. Purchase of the portfolio must be made no later than twelve weeks prior to the start of conference.
b. Entries must not arrive earlier than eight weeks nor later than four weeks prior to the opening day of the Annual Meeting and Conference. Please refer to the letter enclosed in the portfolio for specific dates.
c. Those unable to attend conference or arrange to have their entries picked up must send the mail back fee to the Society, not less than four weeks prior to the opening day of the Annual Meeting and Conference.
For more information on the Certification Program, please email Miho Halsey or call (316) 269-9300 ext. 121
All entries must be painted and will be judged on the following criteria:
It is extremely important that each applicant understand the work submitted must be entirely his/her own. In preparing and working on the entry, the applicant may not seek assistance or critique from anyone, including teachers, art students or friends.
Entries are judged once a year, just prior to SDP’s Annual Meeting and Conference. See the "Dear Applicant" letter, included in the portfolio, for specific dates. Entries received after these dates will not be judged or displayed.
Entries are carefully judged by a panel of Master Decorative Artists. The identity of the applicants is never known by the judges. Entries are marked only with an applicant number, not a name. Each applicant who submits an entry for certification will receive a written critique that will evaluate the strengths and weaknesses exhibited in the entry.
Certification is presented to those whose work passes the requirements. This presentation is made at the SDP Annual Meeting and Conference. It is not a requirement that the applicant be present.
The following terms and their definitions are for your clarification as you read over the sample critique in preparation for your certification test.
Accent or Tint: The use of color to help unify a design and/or add interest.
Color Balance: A pleasing balance, repetition or flow of colors throughout the painting which allows the eye to travel through the painting.
Color Scheme: A plan for producing an arrangement of colors to achieve mood, theme, and direction within a composition.
Pulled Stroke: A stroke is characterized by the application of paint in one continuous motion of the brush.
Double Loaded Stroke: A pulled stroke characterized by two colors side by side blended on the palette.
Focal Area: The area of the design which commands the most interest.
Gradation: A smooth transition of values from light to dark.
Intensity Control: The ability to neutralize or brighten colors within the composition to produce dimension, balance, and harmony.
Overall Effect: The harmonious unified rendition of the line drawing.
Overblended: Loss of contrast and/or color clarity.
Reflected Light: Light that bounces back on the dark side of objects or areas.
Supporting Areas: Areas of lesser importance than the center of interest, yet very necessary.
Underblended: The value areas or zones that appear as stripes or lines instead of a smooth gradation of color/or value from light to dark.
Value Control: Control of lights and darks within each object and throughout the entire painting.
Temperature: The appearance of warmth or coolness of color-often relative to its surroundings.