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Deadline April 19: Libraries design contest carries $500 prize

February 13, 2020
A person wearing a black t-shirt about the FOL T-Shirt Design Contest

The Friends of the VCU Libraries invites students and alumni of the previous five years (2015 - 2019) to submit designs for a T-shirt and other uses. 

The design prompt is: What is your interpretation of the VCU Libraries?

Judging criteria will include:

  • Creative execution
  • Interpretation of VCU Libraries
  • Effectiveness for T-shirt design

The contest is open to all students--full- or part-time, undergraduate or graduate-level, or alumni of the last five years. The judging committee will include representatives from the Friends of the VCU Libraries board, VCU Libraries faculty and School of the Arts faculty.

The creator of the winning work will receive a $500 prize. The artwork will be printed on a tee that will be sold to raise funds for VCU Libraries. 

In addition, participating artists’ designs will be shared on social media, including the image-sharing platform Flickr, and may be gathered into an exhibit for the Cabell Screen. Submitted designs also may be featured on other VCU Libraries’ digital or printed materials. Artists whose work is used by VCU Libraries on materials other than the T-shirt will receive a modest honorarium. Artists retain copyright to their designs. 

  • Deadline for submissions: Sunday, April 19 at midnight
  • Judging will take place: week of April 20
  • The winner will be announced: Monday, April 27 

T-shirts will be sold via an online campaign by the end of March. After the two- week campaign, shirt orders will be printed and fulfilled by Bonfire

Required File Format

Fill out submission form.  

Submit design files to specified Google folder. Use your last name to name the file,

The design must be submitted as a “vector” file—AI, EPS, editable PDFs or a layered and editable PSD file. 

Submitted designs that are not in the requested file types will be disqualified from the contest judging. 

Technical Parameters (more information about printing available on the Bonfire site)

  • Printable area: 11" wide x 14" tall
  • Flat colors only—cannot print gradients, shading or photos
  • Three (3) color maximum
  • We print in Pantone Coated colors, if there are specific Pantone colors you want to use in your design, please include those Pantone numbers
  • The smallest font we can print is 12-point
  • The smallest line/stroke we can print is 2 pt
  • The winning image will be printed on the following tee shirt styles: premium unisex tee, women’s slim fit tee, and v-neck unisex tee.
  • Designer will choose the shirt color from these colors: Dark heather grey, black, charcoal, midnight navy, turquoise, purple rush, red, orange, espresso, white.
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