The waiting is over. It’s time to reveal the 2015 Global Talent Search Finalists, chosen from the 49 Semi-Finalists (who were selected from nearly 1,000 artists’ work).
For the first time ever, we had a TIE this year for the People’s Choice! We are thrilled to unveil the SEVEN Finalists, knowing that one of these artists’ careers is about to change forever.
Five were chosen by our panel of industry experts, and two were chosen via public vote. The overall competition winner will be represented by Lilla Rogers Studio for two years, and win a host of licensing deals from prestigious companies (see here for the awesome prize details). The second assignment Lilla created was full of possibilities! The Semi-Finalists were asked to design a set of storage tins for Antionette, our fictitious character, to sell in her shop in Brooklyn. Read more about the assignment here.
So without further ado, here we go…
Over 10,000 votes were cast by the public, and we can now reveal that the 2015 Global Talent Search People’s Choice Finalists are:
Our stellar panel of judges – with more than a century of industry experience between them in the Gift, Home Décor, Editorial and children’s book illustration, Fabric and Stationery, markets – took days deliberating over the Semi-Final gallery. It was incredibly hard to choose, but in the end the following five were selected as the other Finalists (in no particular order). Our People’s Choice Finalist Katie Vernon was also #1 in the judges pick. Below each submission are three points of feedback from the Judges on what stood out in the piece.
- A lovely play of pattern and illustration that unite but still have an eclectic whimsical spirit.
- Nice mix of watercolor and line work. The collections of quirky objects work well for the cabinets and curiosities concept.
- Nice mix of line and paint work. Quirky and attractive.
- Katie has a very hip vibe with her work, it’s edgy and right on trend.
- It’s nice to see the hand painted work.
- The simplicity of her work is enchanting and the watercolor shading and deal is perfect for the piece. These designs would be a nice addition to any decor without becoming too much of a focal point.
- Great mix of graphics and typography with a nice subtle retro look.
- A good balance of decorative details and bold, eye catching graphics. The subtle texture and palette adds the right bit of softness.
- Her attention to detail and typographic skill is great. She has the talent to master many trends in pattern design and lettering.
- The pieces she did read clean and clear, fun, easy to fit in many homes and would sell well.
- It pops off the background and the use of words and images is subtle but strong.
- Nice stylized motifs and delicate typography in a good commercial style.
- Clever application of the illustrations onto the packaging. Interesting blending of the foreground and background.
- Her graphic approach that is fun and whimsical yet very finished and confident.
- It is nice to see other cultures and Akiko’s style would be a great addition to North American-based projects.
The judges also answered two important questions for us:
In general what stood out to you about the five artists you chose?
- They were easy to envision in the marketplace, had originality and style.
- First was their talent – they have honed their craft, their skills, illustrations, compositions, and palettes were superior to the others. Secondly, each of my selections offered a unique look that is not already over represented in the market place. Art directors walk that fine line finding that balance between new work that is fresh and inspiring and the tried and true styles that we all know will sell. I believe that the artist I chose would be the best illustrators to help me bridge that transition.
- Felt finished and confident. Appeared to won their work, not trying to emulate others. They’ve arrived!
- These five artists confidently displayed their own illustrative styles. They have strong technique, good design skills and professional presentations. Their work is commercially appealing and of-the-moment but with their talent and skills they can look forward to long-lasting and varied careers.
What advice would you give to those who you did NOT choose, in order to make their work more commercially appealing?
“There were many talented designers among the final 50! The choice was hard, and there are several more artists who I wish I could vote for! When I look for artists first and foremost they need to be artistically talented, and have crafted and refined their style. I want them to have a voice, a feel, a vibe. In addition they need to have developed a marketing sense, there are thousands of talented artists out there but not all art translates well to product, or to the mass market place.”
“As an artist you might love illustrating one thing in one style, but be aware if this has a very limited market, no matter how great they are! As an AD I need artists who can offer a variety of subject matter and looks – someone who can illustrate for children as well as an adult male. I need work that can translate from throw pillow to dinner plate to greeting cards and never lose it’s impact.”
Congratulations to everyone! We are thrilled that together 10,000 public votes, plus our judging panel comprising some of the top art directors and creative professionals in the industry, independently selected a set of Finalists where many are graduates of Make Art That Sells. It’s clear that the courses helped them develop commercially-viable art, choose amazing colors and present it professionally. We cannot wait to see the work that comes out of the next class (beginning October 19 2015!)
Stay tuned for the third and final assignment as we follow Antoinette along in this adventure and thanks to everyone for voting!
Lilla, Beth, and the Studio Ladies