Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Art Contest Update!

With only one entry this time, it was pretty clear who would go home with first prize ;p

At the same time however, I see myself looking at my art contest idea in terms of diminishing returns.  I was a little disappointed to only have 3 entries for my first contest (even after extending the deadline) - good though they were....and even more so with only two entries in the 2nd contest.  But a contest with only one entry - stunning though it is - isn't really a contest.  I'll be the first to admit that maybe my timing wasn't the best.  The holiday periods tend to be busier for most folks (with a job like mine, sometimes it's easy to forget that other folks actually go out and do things around this time of year ;p).

That said, it was still a two month contest and only required 3 pictures/frames for an entry.

I was initially going to try starting the next contest today in the same way that I started the previous contests, but I think I'm going to take a break.  While this next one was intended to finish around the beginning of April, it's now looking as though my work schedule won't permit anything like this very conveniently.  So we'll see....maybe I'll start it in Feb and have it run through mid-May or the beginning of June. 

I'm definitely interested in more feedback regarding this.  I've heard from lots of folks here and there about how they're interested in entering these contests, but then nothing really materializes.  Sometimes just schedules, sometimes other things I guess.  But I don't see much point in running something like this for so few entries - I may as well just commission the artwork straight up at this point.

So yeah, any feedback is appreciated...any issues with my contest themes - do I need to be more or less specific?  Fewer required pics (less than 3?), etc?  Thanks.


  1. Have you checked your gmail account - I emailed an entry to you last week! Duke

  2. Sad, I like the contests you make, I wish more people entered => more competition => higher level => ??? => PROFIT !!! (for everyone)

    Maybe you'd need to publicize it more ?
    I hope more people enter the next one, or even better, you find "lost entries" like the above comment !

  3. I had an entry in mind, even had some thumbs roughed out for it. Unfortunately, due to the holidays and being with family it was hard to work on almost anything.

    My suggestion though, hold more contests, maybe even have one once a month, with smaller prizes (maybe $100-50 for first place), with a monthly theme. This way people will know deadlines as well as know when the next one starts. The down side is quality may go down a little bit, though it's better than no entries.

    Also you could keep it so you have the judging last a month that way you can announce the winner and the next contest at the same time.

    Plus advertising is really needed I only learned about this through Jacques00. On where to advertise I can't really say, maybe commission some artists to draw banner adds for the site to post in random forums and on other's blogs?

  4. Here's my analytical take:

    Prize: Not a problem. The prizes are generous.

    Time needed: Not a problem. Plenty of time is given for work to be drawn and submitted.

    Traffic/advertising: Not a problem. The site has dozens of featured artists and many, many visitors, all of whom (we presume) can read.

    That leaves the contests themselves, where I feel any problem resides. Each contest has fairly specific rules as to what is to be drawn, much of which might require a lot of work and time; but there is no guarantee of getting any prize money.

    Essentially, potential entrants are deciding that their odds of winning are not high enough to enter, especially when entering requires them to do significant work. Which is funny, considering that the number of entries actually received is very low, almost guaranteeing that each of the entries wins a prize.

    A good way to test this theory would be to have a series of small, one image contests, with small prizes, and see if you get more response.

    - Furco

  5. I really did want to send in an entry, Had planned to have 5 pages for it had them all planned out quick sketches with short descriptions so I knew exactly what I was doing. Unfortunately we were under pressure to finish what I was doing at work before the end of the year. The company hiring us decided this in early December with a job that should have lasted into February so I was working lots of overtime, and when I got home I didn't feel like doing much of anything.

  6. Appreciate the feedback here. Might be worth mixing it up a little (best of both suggestions). Maybe a few months with small contests (1+ pics) on tighter subjects and then periodically run longer contests too.

    I'll see about trying a small (one pic version) next month to celebrate my birthday and favorite tf prizes for guessing what ;p

  7. I had an idea and had intended to enter the contest, but was so busy with the holidays, etc that I didn't have time. Or perhaps I didn't want to make the time. I'm not sure.

    I spent some time thinking about what turned me off, and I have to say that in my case the extremely specific subject matter combined with the amount of effort involved made this contest not something that I tried really hard to carve out time for. It's one thing to do a really specific request for a commission and another thing entirely to do a really specific request that the artist (that being me) doesn't find particularly inspiring/fun on the off chance of winning a contest. I'll draw just about anything for guaranteed pay, but if I'm going to do art for fun (and the off-chance I might win a prize) then I like more freedom in my subject matter than this contest provided.

    You might try a contest with just "A transformation from human to animal in x # of panels" or "A transformation from boy to girl with fur in x # of panels" and see if you get more responses.

    Just a thought.

  8. Well, I'll buy that my first two contests were a little more specific than most folks might like - poodle-girl and halloween, but this third one was pretty much up in the air.

    I quote:
    "The primary theme here (as previously noted) is alien abduction/experimentation – looking back at some of the retro thematic tropes again. The beautiful woman abducted and experimented on by some horrible little green man or some such…what sorts of awful things will she be subjected to?"

    ....which might sound a little overly specific, but then:

    "Now for process here, this one will be very open to interpretation again. The idea here only requires 3 pictures – although more are always encouraged. There should be an initial picture showing the subject in question, a mid-process pic, and a final form picture. Any appearances by the aliens conducting said experiments is also appreciated – preferably an original design, but I’m not too particular there.

    The transformation can encompass any real process topics – transformation, tg, expansions, etc. But the idea here is to get as crazy as you want (within reason). It can also encompass a variety of transformation means including surgical, ray guns, morphing chamber, etc – a visual display of the means of transformation is a big plus."

    But yeah, the point of having a series of contests is to fire out different themes/ideas. I mean I guess I could just go for a completely random set of entries every 3 or 4 months, but that seems kinda boring. The intention was to have a series of different themes - even having some contests just TG, others just animal TF (some more specific than others), SW, expansions, etc.

    I'll try a short one next month, but since it'll be my "special" month, expect it to be pretty specific.