Contests for Dummies

Chapter One: What is a contest?

“an occasion on which a winner is selected from among two or more contestants”

“A contest, is an event in which two or more individuals or teams compete against each other, often for a prize or similar incentive.”

“1. A struggle for superiority or victory between rivals.
2. A competition, especially one in which entrants perform separately and are rated by judges.”

Chapter Two: Art Calendar Contests – A Few Examples

Example #1
The Knitty 2007 Calendar contest!

Have you knit something from a Knitty pattern? Yahoo! You’re eligible to enter!

The 2006 Knitty Calendar Contest was a huge sucess, so we’re doing it again! Now’s your chance to share your gorgeous work with all our readers!

We’re looking for the best, most enticing, amusing and well-shot photographs of items knit from Knitty patterns. We’ll select the 12 best and publish them in our second calendar, this fall, for 2007. And the best of those 12 will go on the cover and get some seriously fabulous knitworthy stuff! Read on!


Grand prize:
One [1] of the 12 runner-up winners will be chosen to be on the cover of the calendar.

Twelve [12] winning photographs will be selected to fill the pages of the Knitty 2007 calendar. Each winner will receive one [1] copy of the Knitty 2007 calendar and will be fully credited in the calendar [right on their photo].

from the rules…
Knitty staff are not eligible for this contest [that means the catalyst, editors, columnists, technical editor and myself].

Example #2
Another calendar contest from the quilting world: 2009 Quilting Arts Magazine Calendar Contest

Example #3
Illinois Work Zone Safety Calendar Contest

From the contest site:
“The contest judges have cast their votes and have determined the winners of the 2007-2008 Illinois Work Zone Safety Calendar Contest! Congratulations to the following 12 finalists”

Example #4
Space Settlement 2009 Calendar Art Contest

To bring attention to our goal of creating a spacefaring future, NSS is sponsoring a contest for such artwork to be used in a calendar promoting a future of humans living and working in space. The best of the submitted artwork will be selected for inclusion in the 2009 NSS Space Settlement Calendar.

For the Grand Prize winner:
* Publication as the cover of the National Space Society 2009 Space Settlement Calendar

For each of the four First Prizes winners:
* Publication in the National Space Society 2009 Space Settlement Calendar

For the remaining 7 winning entries:
* Publication in the National Space Society 2009 Space Settlement Calendar


“To determine the winning entries in the National Space Society’s Space Settlement Art Contest, we have selected a mix of internationally renowned space artists and space activists.”

Example #5
WINNERS of the Energy Quest Art Contest
for California’s 2008 Energy Calendar!

Example #6
The American Academy of Equine Art Calendar competition

The American Academy of Equine Art is planning to produce a 2009 Calendar featuring contemporary equine art. We are looking for 12 feature paintings or sculptures plus one for the cover. Your work could be a part of this calendar. Just enter the competition. Submissions will be posted on this site. Each month the general public will vote on line for 10 finalists. At the end of the year, a jury of AAEA artists will choose the 13 winners from the 120 finalists. The winners will be included in the 2009 Calendar.

Example #7
Barn Calendar Contest

Twelve winners were chosen in the statewide Barn Again Calendar Contest, co-sponsored by the Nebraska Humanities Council, the Nebraska 4-H and the Nebraska Soybean Board, in conjunction with the traveling exhibit “Barn Again! Celebrating an American Icon.”

Nearly 300 participants each submitted a crayon drawing of an existing barn in Nebraska and a brief paragraph about the barn. All Nebraska students grades 3 through 12 were eligible.

Winners were chosen in three categories — junior (grades 3-5), intermediate (grades 6-8) and senior (grades 9-12). Three winners were selected in each category and three additional winners were chosen at large. All 12 artists received savings bonds.

The winning entries, which are displayed below, will be featured in the 2002 Beautiful Barns of Nebraska Calendar.

Chapter Three: Quiz Time!

True or False (7 questions)

1. The Fractal Universe Calendar is an annual Art Contest where entrants may each submit up to 10 Fractal Art images for judging. True or False

2. The Fractal Universe Calendar is a fractal art contest where the prizes are publication in the calendar and a few hundred dollars cash. True or False

3. The Grand Prize in the Fractal Universe Calendar fractal art contest is having your image used for the front cover. True or False

4. On average, over the years, approximately 40% of the prizes awarded in the Fractal Universe Calendar contest went to just four people who were all either current or former judges of the contest. True or False

5. In the 2009 Fractal Universe Calendar art contest, the Grand Prize (front cover) was awarded to one of the judges along with the largest cash prize. True or False

6. The “Editors” and supporters of the Fractal Universe Calendar deliberately avoid the use of the terms, “contest”, “judge” and “prizes” (and consistently refuse to accept such terminology) because, as a contest, the Fractal Universe Calendar is blatantly unfair because it allows the “Editors” to judge the work of their fellow competitors while at the same time judging their own submitted artwork which is competing against the others for inclusion in the calendar. True or False

7. Only a complete idiot or a barefaced liar still maintains that the Fractal Universe Calendar is not a contest. True or False

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2 thoughts on “Contests for Dummies

  1. You guys cannot be this stupid in reality. It does not follow that because some calendar images are chosen in competition or by contest that all calendar images are chosen in this way. You’ve given some examples of ones that are, I can give you plenty of examples of ones which aren’t.

    I have been a contributing photographer for the world’s third largest (I am told) photo agency for many years (Photonica). Lots of photographers submit their images. Some are selected, others are rejected. This is neither a contest or a competition. It is solely up to the people at Photonica, based on what they need and what they feel will sell.

    When it comes time to put out a new catalog, some images from those previously selected are chosen. It can be worth a considerable amount of money to have one’s images in the catalog, but again, this is neither a contest or a competition. It is completely Photonica’s call, based on their judgement.

    Oh yes, there are LOTS and LOTS of photo contests and competitions out there, no doubt about it. But by your misleading definitions, it seems you would call my photo submission process a competition or a contest.

    True or false?


  2. True.

    -and that’s Princeton University’s “misleading” definition you’re referring to.

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