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March 1, 2013
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UPDATE/EDIT - A few people requested I extend the contest deadline, and due to a few extra things that came up last minute, I'll be extending the contest until Friday, May 10th 2013. Consequently, the livestream announcement of winners will be moved back until 6PM EST on Saturday, May 11th 2013. I will not extend it farther than this, as it wouldn't be fair to the people who have already entered. But if you're still on the fence about entering, now's a good chance to finalize some things and get it in ^_^

CONTEST ENTRIES: 28
GIVEAWAY ENTRIES: 2 (the odds are really good here, and some kickass prizes to boot!)



Hey there sports fans!

I'm running a bit behind on art in preparation for Secret!Project, so instead of offering commission specials, I'll be holding a CONTEST instead! Because there's no better special out there than FREE ART, amirite?

This contest is informally called "TELL ME ABOUT YOUR ORIGINAL CHARACTERS" 8D

.~* THE QUICK INFORMATION *~.
:bulletblack: Tell me about your character following the rules below.
:bulletblack: There will be three contest winners, and one* randomly selected giveaway winner
:bulletblack: This contest's deadline is Friday, April 19th, 2013)Friday, May 10th 2013
:bulletblack: You can enter the contest with up to two characters.
:bulletblack: You can enter the giveaway as many times as you want. :D


.~* Let's start with the prizes, shall we? *~.
FIRST PLACE WILL RECEIVE
:bulletgreen: 1000 :points:
:bulletgreen: Digital painting: two characters, full body, with background
:bulletgreen: 50% off your next three commissions from me (Paypal only)

SECOND PLACE WILL RECEIVE
:bulletblue: 500 :points:
:bulletblue: Digital painting: one character, full body, no background
:bulletblue: 50% off your next two commissions from me (Paypal only)

THIRD PLACE WILL RECEIVE
:bulletpurple: 250 :points:
:bulletpurple: Digital painting: one character, waist up, no background
:bulletpurple: 50% off your next commission from me (Paypal only)

GIVEAWAY WINNER WILL RECEIVE
:bulletpink: 500 :points:
:bulletpink: Digital painting: one character, full body, no background
:bulletpink: Two-week art feature on Commission-Magic



.~* CONTEST/GIVEAWAY - YOU will qualify if... *~.
A) you are a living breathing human living on this green, green earth
B) you are a DeviantART user
C) you are watching my gallery :D



.~* CONTEST - Your CHARACTER will qualify if... *~.
A) they are your own creation. This means fan characters from an established series are allowed. Adoptables that you have purchased from another person are NOT allowed, however. If you have questions on what constitutes "your own creation", feel free to ask!
B) there is at least one reference image of them.

and that's it! As long as you created them and I have a visual reference, you're golden!



.~* CONTEST - How to enter your CHARACTER *~.
Send me a note with the subject "Character contest" and the following information~

A) Fill out the objective stuff.
:bulletred: Name:
:bulletorange: Age:
:bulletyellow: Gender:
:bulletgreen: Species:
:bulletblue: Height/weight:
:bulletpurple: Hair/skin/eye color:
:bulletred: Scars/unusual features:
:bulletorange: Tattoos/piercings:
:bulletyellow: Fashion sense:
:bulletgreen: Jewelry:
:bulletblue: Makeup (if applicable):
:bulletpurple: Important equipment (max. 3 objects):

B) Tell me about their personality. (300 words maximum)

C) Tell me about their history. (500 words maximum)

D) Tell me about their relationships. (300 words maximum)

E) Show me a reference picture. (1-5 pictures maximum)



.~* CONTEST - What criteria will you be using to decide who wins? *~.
A character is made up of two parts - one part objective, and one part subjective. I'll be judging each character on both objective and subjective criteria.

OBJECTIVELY, I will be looking at surface characteristics.
A) How much thought it looks like you put into their appearance
B) How well their appearance matches up to their personality
C) How well coordinated their colors are
D) How their appearance fits in with the world they're a part of
E) The balancing act between "unique" and "uniform"
F) How their reference pictures match up to their written description

SUBJECTIVELY, I will be looking deeper into the character based on what you write about their personality, history, and relationships.
A) Can other people relate to your character?
B) Do they have clear motivations for the things they did in the past?
C) Do they have goals for the future?
D) Do they exhibit many Mary Sue characteristics? If so, does it seem like they are thought-out and established with clear intent?
E) Does their personality invite me to learn more about them?

Basically, the goal of this contest is to challenge you to think beyond just the surface of your character, to their deeper wants and needs, and compose a description for them that invites other people to want to learn more about them. It's as if somebody says they think your brain-child is interesting! It gives you a sense of pride that few mediums can recreate.

Alternately, I do feel the need to state up front that if you do not win, it is not an attack on you personally. It's barely been twelve hours and I've already gotten five entries! It's going to be difficult to choose three winners, but at the end of the day, you come out of this contest with a character that you've put probably hours, if not days or weeks of thought into - and nobody can take that away from you. Which really makes you a winner, no matter what. :)



.~* A NOTE ABOUT MARY SUE CHARACTERISTICS *~.
You would be hard pressed to find a character that does not have Mary Sue tendencies. Being ungodly beautiful, friendly to everyone, best friends/love interest to the main character in a series, noteworthy and unusual variations within their race... these are qualities that often make up main characters. If they weren't unusual or interesting, we would have no reason to pay attention to their story!

HOWEVER. The characters I choose as the winner will have balanced typical "Mary Sue" traits with other non-Sue things to achieve a well-rounded character. And remember, one person's Sue is another person's Average Joe. It's up to you to craft your character description in such a way that it highlights their positives and gives enough attention to their flaws.

Click here for more information.
Click here for the Universal Mary Sue Litmus Test

Please note, I am not affiliated with either page - this is just for your reference in case you still have some questions :D

_________________________________________________________________

.~* EXAMPLE CONTEST ENTRY *~.

:bulletred: Name: Charlotte Aranda
:bulletorange: Age: 20
:bulletyellow: Gender: Female
:bulletgreen: Species: Human (for all intents and purposes)
:bulletblue: Height/weight: 5' 7", 140lbs.
:bulletpurple: Hair/skin/eye color: Brown hair with highlights - tanned skin - hazelish green eyes
:bulletred: Scars/unusual features: None visible
:bulletorange: Tattoos/piercings: Ears pierced
:bulletyellow: Fashion sense: Trendy with a flair for the dramatic.
:bulletgreen: Jewelry: Yes, and lots of it. Prefers gold over silver.
:bulletblue: Makeup (if applicable): Yes - eyeliner and bright lipstick are a must.
:bulletpurple: Important equipment (max. 3 objects): Black Coach purse, white iPhone.

Personality - Highly fashionable, obsessed with high heels and handbags. Former prom queen, lead dancer in the show choir, social butterfly/party hopper and all that - she was the alpha female of her high school. Think Regina George from "Mean Girls". On the outside, she's a sweet, friendly person. On the inside, she's a selfish, manipulative hussy using her looks and sexuality to get the things she wants. Even deeper than that is an insecure little girl who understands the vastness of the world, and finds herself intimidated by everything outside of her self-absorbed bubble. And when she finds herself unwillingly interning with the most brilliant minds in the world, it takes all of her resolve to mature and flourish on a life path she knows it's her duty to fill. (130 words)

History - Charlotte grew up in an upper-middle class family in Wheaton, IL to parents who never really understood her affinity for broadway and musical theater. Assuming it was simply a phase, they continued to urge her to pursue a more "meaningful" degree. What they really meant is that they wanted to raise her to be the world-changer they knew she was destined to be - something they could never explain to a girl who refused her calling every time it came her way.

Charlotte never answered that call until it threw her into a laboratory hell-bent on murdering its test subjects; she barely clawed out with her life intact. Every day that goes by, she learns more about the circumstances surrounding her destiny to lead an organization of geniuses, just how deep her family are involved, and how reluctant everyone is to share this information with her and her companions, for fear of "altering the course of time".

She would later learn that phrase would mean exactly that - "Back To The Future" style, minus the DeLorean of course. (178 words)

Relationships - On the surface, Charlotte likes her friendships and relationships with a touch of drama - it keeps things interesting and the gossip delicious and fresh. You could say she never takes it too seriously, as she's aware nothing lasts forever, and it keeps her from being burned by unfortunate love affairs.

She maintains a tolerable relationship with her parents, because they provide a reliable financial crutch (as she would otherwise have zero dollars to her name). However, their uncaring attitude toward her hobbies has left a bad taste in her mouth. As a result, she gets along best with them when they're kept at a distance, where they don't scrutinize her every move, and she doesn't put up with their criticism over her life decisions.

There are very few people that manage to worm their way into her deepest core to see that insecure little girl intimidated by the big scary world. The most influential of which is Dr. Reynold Sinclair, the second-in-command of the organization of geniuses. Obligated by fate to oversee her development, he makes every effort to groom her into a public figure worthy of running that organization. As time goes on, it's becoming less of an obligation and he's taken more personal interest, even going so far as to say he cares about her as a confidant and a friend. In return, Charlotte sees Reynold as a very reliable mentor, and the only person to give her straight answers about the way things are progressing in the world/story, where she's expected to save the world and given no tools to do so by the powers-that-be. (270 words)

Reference images -
shadowednavi.deviantart.com/ar…
shadowednavi.deviantart.com/ar… (front and center)
carbonoid.deviantart.com/art/B…
kayla0.deviantart.com/art/VC-3… (picture on the right)
azzedar-san.deviantart.com/art…

_________________________________________________________________


.~* GIVEAWAY - Rules *~.
:bulletblack: Again, if you're a breathing human with a DA account and you're watching my gallery, you qualify!
:bulletblack: Enter by drawing a picture of Charlotte Aranda, my contest example.
:bulletblack: Send me a note with a link to the picture
:bulletblack: I will shower you with hugs and adoration and give you a number
:bulletblack: I will hold a livestream on Saturday, May 11th where I will randomly roll the number of the winner* :D
:bulletblack: * - For every 10 entries I receive, I will add another winner (same prize)

And that's it! Since I want to focus on the character contest, I will not be judging for quality, though I do ask as a fellow artist that you please take pride in the work you do ^_^

GOOD LUCK EVERYONE! I can't wait to meet some of your characters! :D
Add a Comment:
 
:iconsylvanaas:
sylvanaas Featured By Owner Mar 29, 2014
Well may I'll enter O:
Reply
:iconshadowednavi:
shadowednavi Featured By Owner Mar 29, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hey there, I'm afraid this contest is nearly a year old, but thank you for the interest!
Reply
:iconqihah:
Qihah Featured By Owner May 4, 2013
I wanna enter!! :la:
Reply
:iconshadowednavi:
shadowednavi Featured By Owner May 4, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hey there! Please do :D You still have six days~
Reply
:iconqihah:
Qihah Featured By Owner May 7, 2013
Well, i finally entered!
Reply
:iconeventua:
Eventua Featured By Owner May 2, 2013  Student Writer
Um, you know I entered? Well, I have this new reference image for her which is really, really good! D:

Would it be possible to delete the original entry and resubmit Mystidia? :o
Reply
:iconshadowednavi:
shadowednavi Featured By Owner May 2, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hey there! Feel free to just send the image. I'll attach it to the appropriate entry, no worries :D
Reply
:iconeventua:
Eventua Featured By Owner May 2, 2013  Student Writer
Ah, thank you! This is the image, for the character Mystidia: [link]
Reply
:iconrokulie:
rokulie Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2013   Traditional Artist
I'm still debating which two lucky OC's of mine I will submit ^^;

One of the guys I want to send you doesn't really have a past; he's just a personality floating around in my head. Is having a past/an original story a major part of the contest?
Reply
:iconshadowednavi:
shadowednavi Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hi there! The point of the contest is to challenge you to think deeply about your character. Although having the MOST ELABORATE DETAILED PAST is not required, I'll be able to see how much effort a person has put into their entry, and THAT effort is what I'm judging :)
Reply
Add a Comment: