Communication Arts - 2022 Illustration competition

January 21, 2022

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Location (s):

  • Online
  • United States of America


Introduce your work to the world. Enter the most prestigious competition for creativity in illustration, the Communication Arts Illustration Competition. Any illustration first published or produced from January 2021 through January 2022 is eligible.


Selected by a nationally representative jury of distinguished designers, art directors and illustrators, the winning entries will be distributed worldwide in the Communication Arts Illustration Annual, in print and digital editions, and on, assuring important exposure to the creators of this outstanding work. As a service to art directors, designers and art buyers, a comprehensive index will carry contact information of the illustrators represented.

Each winning entrant will receive a personalized Award of Excellence, milled from solid aluminum, and award certificates issued for firms, individuals and clients.

CA’s Award of Excellence is one of the most-coveted awards in the industry. If chosen, winning places you in the highest ranks of your profession.

Illustration Competition Categories:

These categories are judged by the Illustration jury and will appear in the Illustration Annual:

  • Advertising: ads, posters, music and product packaging, etc.
  • Books: covers, jackets, interiors, etc.
  • Editorial: consumer or trade magazines, newspapers, etc.
  • For Sale: posters, prints, greeting cards, licensing/stock, gallery sale, online store, etc.
  • Institutional: company/association publications, annual reports, catalogs, client websites, blogs, etc.
  • Motion/Animation: time-based media for film, television, video or web, etc.
  • Self-Promotion: promotion for illustrators, design firms, ad agencies, art schools, printers, paper companies, etc.
  • Unpublished: experimental/personal work not published.
  • Student Work: illustration or animation created for school assignments.

How to Enter
All competition entries are processed through our online competition system.

Before you begin the process of entering a competition, please have the following information and materials ready. This will make the process go quickly:

  • Your contact information for registration and notification.
  • Title and basic credits for each project.
  • Digital files of work you want to submit. See below for file specs.

Entries can be submitted in the following formats:

  • Digital Images: Must be RGB in JPG format with a maximum file size of 2MB.
  • Motion/Animation Entries: Must be in MOV, MP4 or MPG format, with a maximum file size of 500MB.

All entrants grant Communication Arts the right to reproduce work selected in the Illustration Competition on the Communication Arts website and in materials used to promote the magazine, the competition and/or future related promotions.

After the January 7, 2022 deadline we will accept entries for two weeks but a late entry fee of $10 per submission is required. No entries can be registered after January 21, 2022.

Opportunity is About:


Candidates should be from:

Description of Ideal Candidate:

What to enter?

  • Any illustration first published or produced from January 2021 through January 2022 is eligible.
  • Entries may originate from any country.
  • Descriptions in English are very important to the judges.
  • Submission of entries acknowledges the right of Communication Arts to use them for publication and exhibition.


  • Can I enter one project into multiple categories?

    Yes, as long as the project fits in each category you want to enter.
  • Can I enter my work as a series?
    Yes, but all work in a series must be part of the same campaign. When works are submitted as a series they are judged together as a group. The overall strength of the series depends on each individual piece and its function within the campaign.
  • Can I enter work in the single and series categories?
    Yes, you can enter work as a series and the individual images as single entries.
  • If my entry is accepted, what will you use for reproduction?
    If your work is accepted we will request high-res reproduction materials at that time.
  • I have a single brochure/poster/self-promo piece that has several illustrations on it. Why is it a series and not a single entry?
    The judges of the Illustration Competition are only judging the illustrations, not the typography, design or art direction. (Entrants who want the design or art direction of their pieces to be considered should enter them in the CA Advertising and Design Competitions.) Each illustration is a single entry. Therefore, a piece with several illustrations must be considered a series. There is a maximum of five illustrations in each series; if a piece is entered and there are more than five illustrations on it, the five that are to be judged must be marked in some way.


Deadline: January 21, 2022

Cost/funding for participants:

We do not offer a cash prize. The winners are featured in one of our annuals distributed worldwide, in both print and digital editions, and on, assuring important exposure to the creators of this outstanding work. Each winning entrant will also receive one personalized Award of Excellence, milled from solid aluminum, and printed award certificates for all creative contributors.

Entry fees vary from 20$ to 180$ between categories.

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