FOL Design Contest 2022 Winning Design of stylized hands, eyeball, coffee cups, mice, books and pencils interacting with each other.

Friends of the Libraries Design Contest

The Friends of VCU Libraries’ annual Design Contest harnesses the VCU community’s creativity to help fundraise for VCU Libraries. 

The creator of the winning design receives a $500 prize. The artwork will be printed on a T-shirt that will be sold to raise funds for VCU Libraries. In addition, participating artists’ designs will be shared on social media, including Flickr, and may be gathered into an exhibit for the Cabell Screen. Previous winners' work has illustrated the annual report and be featured in greeting and postcards. 

Submitted designs also may be featured on other VCU Libraries’ digital or printed materials. Artists whose work is used by VCU Libraries will receive a modest honorarium. Artists retain copyright to their designs. Want to see examples of past winning designs? Here are winners from 2022, 2021, 2020, and 2019.

2024 Design Contest Specifications 

The Friends of the VCU Libraries invite students and alumni of the previous five years (2018 - 2023) to submit their own designs for use on VCU Libraries T-shirt and other promotional materials. Deadline for submission is midnight April 21. The prize is $500.

In keeping with the recent opening of the new Reflection Room, the 2024 design prompt is: VCU Libraries: Reflection

Judging criteria will include:

  • Creative execution
  • Interpretation of the VCU Libraries as a whole – not just Cabell Library or the Health Sciences Library
  • Showcasing and celebrating the diversity of VCU Libraries
  • Effectiveness for tee shirt design

The contest is open to all students—full- or part-time, undergraduate or graduate-level, or alumni of the last 5 years. Winners from past years are not eligible to submit. You may submit more than one design. Feel free to also submit a mockup of how your design will look on a T shirt with suggested shirt color.

The judging committee will include representatives from the Friends of the VCU Libraries Board, VCU Libraries and VCU School of the Arts. 

How to submit designs 

Use this form: Label the file with your last name. You may enter more than one design. If you do so, label the file with your last name and number of the submission.

The design must be submitted as a PDF file. Winning entrants will be asked to provide their design in an editable vector file such as —AI, EPS, PDFs, SVG’s 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
  • The t-shirts are printed 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 to be used is 12-point
  • The smallest line/stroke allowed is 2 pt
  • The winning image will be printed on the following shirt styles: premium unisex tee, women’s slim fit tee, v-neck unisex tee, premium unisex tank, pullover hoodie and premium youth tee.
  • Designer should keep in mind that the shirts will come printed in a variety of colors (including dark heather gray, black, charcoal, midnight navy, turquoise, purple rush, red, orange, espresso, white) and design an image that will convey appropriately.

Order information: Campaign will be open for at least two months, orders fulfilled and mailed on a rolling basis.