Strokes of Genius





Extended Deadline: May 30, 2014 CLOSED

Winners will be notified on or before September 19, 2014

Winning art will be featured in North Light Books’ hardbound showcase of the best in contemporary drawing. From quick contour sketches to carefully rendered drawings with a full range of values, North Light Books will showcase the best of the best in a variety of styles and subjects. The theme of Strokes of Genius 7 is Depth, Dimension + Space.


Artwork Eligibility

Depth, dimension and space relate to the attempt by the artist to present the illusion of three dimensions on a two-dimensional surface. Since antiquity, humans have sought to represent the world we walk about on a flat surface, whether a cave wall, side of a pyramid, stone cathedral wall, papyrus, canvas or paper. Depth, dimension and space have both scientific and metaphorical meanings. Depth can mean complexity and profundity of thought or intensity of emotion—to say that something is dimensional can mean that it is interesting, having more than one aspect to it. Space created by an artist does not have to resemble real space, but can represent an emotion or experience. Depth, dimension and space, or the illusion of these, is often what allows viewers to feel as if they can enter into a drawing, making it all the more personal. If your artwork is selected you will be asked to write a paragraph that speaks to the theme of depth, dimension and space. Artwork can be in any dry medium, or wet medium applied in a linear fashion that would be traditionally considered drawing. This includes—but is not necessarily limited to—pencil, charcoal, Conté crayon, pen and ink, scratchboard, silverpoint, colored pencil, pastel and even some paint mediums if used in a linear manner. Final judgment on whether a work of art fits into the “drawing” category will be determined by the editors.


A range of mediums will be included. At least 50% of the book will be black-and-
white artwork. We are also looking for a range of finishes, from quick contour sketches to carefully rendered drawings with a full range of values. A fully saturated pastel or colored pencil “painting” may not be considered eligible for this book (at the discretion of the editor). There is no specification for subject matter. All appropriate subjects will be considered.

Digital images must be submitted online or on CD ROM or DVD (please label the disks with your name, email and address). For judging purposes, these images must be high quality, in RGB color mode, JPEG format, and 72dpi. Digital files must be smaller than 5MB. Digital files submitted by mail must be labeled with your last name, first name, the entry number (should correspond to the number on the entry form), with no punctuation marks until the file extension (example: Wolf Rachel 3.jpg). Disks will not be returned.

Entry Form

Enter online or use the offline entry form. If entering offline, the form must be completed and submitted along with your artwork, postmarked by May 30, 2014. Keep a copy of the entry form for yourself—we may refer to it in future correspondence.

Entry Fee

The fee is $30.00 for the first digital submission and $25.00 for each additional digital submission. If you are submitting online, all entries must be within the same checkout cart in order to receive the additional entry discount. If you are paying by check or money order please make them payable in U.S. funds to F+W Media, Inc. All checks will be cashed within 30 days of the competition final deadline. Entry fees are non-refundable.

Selection Process

All submissions will be reviewed by Rachel Wolf and the editorial staff of North Light Books. Art will be selected on the basis of general quality as well as suitability for this publication.


Notification for winners will be September 19, 2014. Winners will be asked to provide some specific written information about their selected drawing(s). Winners will also be required to submit a 9” x 12” RAW file (RGB format, 300dpi) or 4” x 5” transparency for the work to be published. The transparency or CD-ROM will be held by the publisher until the date of publication and then returned. For a list of winners, visit after September 19, 2014.


Strokes of Genius 6 list of winners

Strokes of Genius 5 list of winners

Strokes of Genius 4 list of winners

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