Severe ME Artists Project 2023

#MEAction is thrilled to announce our Severe ME Artists Project 2023 that will feature work from those within the severe ME community and will be in recognition of Severe ME Day on August 8th! This project will be an opportunity for those with severe ME to showcase your artwork, whether it be writing, photography, drawing, or any other way that illustrates their talents. You can also submit past artwork created before you got sick.

The Severe ME Artists Project 2023 will feature a video compilation and an online gallery of submitted work. This project will be shared with the community around Severe ME Day with the goal that people can watch the video and/or scroll through the gallery when it is best for them. Here are the galleries from 2021 and 2022 that you can review to get a sense of these amazing projects. 

The same as last year, we are asking that people only submit ONE piece of work to be featured in the video and the gallery. Over the past few years, we have received so much participation that in order to make this project feasible, we can only handle one piece of work per person. 

To participate in the project, please read through these instructions carefully as they have changed from previous years. 

  1. How to label the file of your piece–very important step:
    Each submission must be labeled as you want your names to appear (in the video, on our site, etc.) and the number of years you have lived with severe ME. It’s fine if you just want to use your first name, list yourself as anonymous, or use a screen name, but the labeling convention remains the same. (Note that the numbers in the examples below are simply meant to indicate where you should put the number of years you’ve had severe ME.)

    The files should look like one of these options:

       If you have had Severe ME for months rather than years, here is the labeling   convention to use: 

       If you don’t properly label your file, you will just be listed as Anonymous.

  1. If you would like to submit a video, it must be 2 minutes or shorter. The video can be of you sharing any type of artwork. You can film yourself reading one of your written pieces, one of your photographs, paintings or sculptures, or you can share a song you have written. Really any artwork that you would like to show, we are excited to see!


  2. Absolutely NO copyrighted material or the submission will not be used. This includes lip syncing or performing a cover. These must be original works and you need to own the rights to what you are sharing/performing/presenting.


  3. Here are the places where you will upload your work, that has been labeled correctly using the guide is step #1. Use the first option for any piece that is not a video and the SmugMug link if sharing a video:

    If submitting artwork or writing, upload here:
    *You will get a screen that says “Thank you for submitting the form” and you will know the file was uploaded successfully.*

    If submitting a video, upload here:
    *You will get a screen that says “Hooray!” and you will know the video was uploaded successfully.*

    Things to keep in mind:
    Anything submitted after the deadline, Tuesday, July 25th, will not be used. Again, you can only submit ONE piece. One piece of writing, one image, or one video. No mixing and matching. If you submit more than 1 piece, we will only pick one. Also, NO changes will be made to the compilation video after we post it. It is important to know you will be featured in that compilation video for as long as it lives on the internet, so be sure to label your files properly to ensure that your names and years with ME will appear on screen correctly. And only submit work that you are comfortable sharing with the full community.

Please submit your ONE piece of work by Tuesday, July 25TH! Watch out for the video and online gallery to be released near Severe ME Day!

Art is foundational to activism. It provides a way to tell a story that connects us on a deeper level. It goes beyond the rational and connects on the emotional. We also want to acknowledge the grief that happens for those unable to practice their art or have had to change their methods due to illness. We are holding space for you and keep you at the center of all we do at #MEAction, all year long.

Severe ME Day was created by the
25% M.E. Group and you can learn more about their work here

Wondering how to know if participating in the Severe ME Artist Project is for you? Here are two things to consider:

1. Anyone who identifies as having severe ME can participate. We are not requiring specific criteria.

2. Still not sure, then we ask that you consider if you need accommodations to share your work beyond our other two Artist Salons we host throughout the year. Those are live events where most artist participate and share their work virtually but by live video. We do have a few that send in a video. This Project is set up to accommodate those too severely ill for that option. Those who need to just submit a work via photo or document or a short video ahead of time. It will be shared on a still gallery for those unable to tolerate videos as well as on a video for those who can. So if you need those accommodations, please join in. If you can safely manage the other events and are not sure you identify as severe, maybe sit this one out.


11 thoughts on “Severe ME Artists Project 2023”

  1. I wonder if you consulted with any severe patients about this plan? For example, the file naming requirement is probably an insurmountable hurdle on the mobile devices I depend on. Three weeks is also not much notice for severe people to do anything. And I’m choosing to send this feedback knowing it probably exhausts the energy I have to try to find workarounds. Despite what I believe were good intentions, I don’t think severe patients were successfully centered here. Please bring severe people into the planning next time.

    1. Celeste Eden (Petterson)

      If it helps I did this easily on my iPad and I don’t know jack about technology. Changing file name: after upload you’ll be a pencil by the file name, just click to edit. Hope that helps.

  2. hi , i am a digital artist did some pieces that i would like to share but i don’t know how due my cognitive impairment i suffer from severe M/CFS , is there any email address where i can share , thank you .

  3. Celeste Eden (Petterson)

    I am so excited, just submitted mine. Is there going to be a “winner?” Curious is all.

    1. Hi, Celeste, and thank you for your interest in this project!

      This isn’t a competition, but rather a celebration of the talents of those with severe ME.

      Thank you for participating – I can’t wait to see your piece!

  4. Does the artwork have to be ME or illness related? That is, should it represent our struggle with the disease, or can it be any kind of artwork?

  5. Hello,

    I read from this that music is not accepted for the contest, but only if it is in conjunction with a video that is x<2 min?!



    1. Hi, Martin!

      We do accept music submissions, but if your piece is over 2 minutes, we will fade it out and link to the full version.

      Please email me at [email protected] with your submission, and we can go from there.

      Thank you!

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