Our 2014 Student Design Competition is Officially Open!

Our 2014 Student Design Competition is Officially Open! We know you've been waiting, so without further delay, our 2014 Student Design Competition is now officially open. This annual competition is an awesome opportunity for you to win money, prizes and -- perhaps best of all -- a summer internship at a top magazine! We're sharing the categories and rules below to get you started, and we'll be looking back at past winners, answering frequently asked questions and sharing some tips over the coming weeks, so stay tuned and read on...

Below you will find the rules and categories for creating your design entries. But you can find all the entry and payment details HERE along with tips, FAQs, links to past entries and more. So check out that link and download the official Call for Entries with entry forms and rules, and get started!!

Pick one of the following 5 categories and design a 2-spread story. We LOVE original photography and illustration, so if you can incorporate that, even better (some categories even require it). And who says you only have to pick 1? Enter as many designs as you'd like! Don't forget, student members get their first 3 entries FREE!

Fashion/Lifestyle Magazine
This fashion/lifestyle magazine targets hip students and the young professional interested in the modern lifestyle. It covers fashion, art, music and film and features in-depth interviews, trends and reviews. 
HEADLINE: (Name of subject), Still on Top
DEK: You might not have seen them in the public eye recently but (name) has never been so busy.
BYLINE: By Janet Marion
Design a two-spread story for this magazine that is a biography or interview. Think of ways to engage the reader possibly using timelines, charts or sidebars. You must create your own photography or illustrations for this category. Your topic does not have to be an actual person or group. If you choose an actual famous person or group, think of using illustration, photomontage or typography to depict your subject.

City/Regional Magazine

This magazine is an established city/regional publication with an attitude geared toward the young and independent city-dweller or traveler. It covers food, nightlife, and where to stay. If you need to know this place, this magazine is your source.
HEADLINE/DEK: The Insider's Guide: 10 places to eat, drink and hang out like a local in (Name of City)
BYLINE: By The Editors
Design a two-spread feature for this magazine. This story should be a round-up of ideas and things to do. Think about ways to incorporate sidebars and tips to make this a fun, easy design, accessible to the audience. Consider producing your own photography to give your design a fresh and creative approach to your city or region.

How-To... Magazine
This new hip and fun magazine for the young post-graduate has a broad topic reach on how to improve your home, life and career.
HEADLINE: (Fill in Blank) Like a Pro.
DEK:  Follow these few simple steps to become a master.
BYLINE: By F. C. Williams
Design a two-spread feature in this magazine that gives step-by-step instructions on how to master the topic of your choice. You might want to include original illustrations, schematics and sidebars to make it easier to follow. Think of an innovative and fun way to approach your topic. You don't actually have to write the story, but use real text in display type.

Innovations Magazine

This respected publication geared toward the savvy tech person is known for its bold typography and modern design. It contains product reviews, in-depth interviews, and business forecasts.
HEADLINE: Will it Change Your Life?
DEK:  (Blank) has made sweeping claims to better our life...Is it/Are they for real?
BYLINE: By James Rodgers
Design a two-spread feature that covers a person or trend that has affected the lifestyle of today. It could be an innovative product or commodity, financial outlook or interview with a business person. Think of creative ways to illustrate and design for your topic that will
grab the attention of the reader. Consider adding infographics, charts or sidebars to help tell the story.

Sports/Adventure Magazine
This publication is a must-read for young athletes and people obsessed with sports and the
lifestyle associated with them. It reviews new products, covers major sporting events as well as small competitions and goes around the world to find them. Writers interview sports super-stars as well as kids in the park.
HEADLINE/DEK:  (Name of sport/Activity/Person): Extreme Rush  OR
(Name of sport): The Thrill of It
BYLINE: By Jane Johnson
Design a two-spread feature of a sport or sports figure, with an emphasis on the lifestyle and
attitude. You can highlight the sport itself or an athlete's prowess or focus on their style. The text does not have to begin on the first spread, but it certainly can. It doesn't have to be a real person. Consider producing your own photography to make your design unique.


1.  CHOOSE:  Select a project from one of the five categories listed above (Fashion/Lifestyle, City/Regional, How-To..., Innovations, Sports/Adventure).


2.  DESIGN:  Create a 4-page story (2 spreads) on the project you choose. Each page measures 8" x 10", so a spread is 16" x 10". 

Original photography or illustration is required for one category, but not all; though it is welcome in every category, if appropriate. 

You may enter more than one design in the same or different categories. SPD Student Members get their first 3 entries for free -- you can choose to join or renew when you submit your entries. (You read that right: all SPD Student Members get 3 free entries, a free Annual, free admission to events, and a huge discount on your first year of professional membership after you graduate.)


3.  SUBMIT:  Either printed material or digital files as follows:

Printed Material: Full-size spreads, not reduced copies. DO NOT MOUNT THE WORK TO ANY TYPE OF BOARD. Tape a copy of your completed entry form to the BACK of each submission. Staple the spreads together in the upper left-hand corner. (Slides will NOT be accepted).

Digital PDFs: You MUST include your name somewhere on each spread in 4pt type. Each file MUST be named "First_Lastname.pdf" Entries should be full-size spreads, print quality, 300 dpi, PDF files (all fonts embedded). Burn all submissions to a CD. It is ok to put multiple entries on one CD. Include a printed copy of the entry form for each entry. Mark clearly the name of the school and students' last name(s) on CD.


4.  SEND all entries with completed entry forms and payment (or your PayPal receipt as proof of payment) to:

The Society of Publication Designers  
27 Union Square West, Suite 207 
New York, NY 10003

Entries must be received by Monday, March 3, 2014, 5pm EST. Anything later will not be eligible as the judging process begins Tuesday, so plan some cushion time for yourself. There are NO EXTENSIONS.


Please read the instructions carefully and stay within the guidelines. SPD reserves the right to disqualify any miscategorized or incomplete entries. Be sure to read over all the details and download the entry form here. Also continually check us out here on the blog as we will be posting tips, FAQs and other helpful info as the date nears.

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