Illustrator Contest Rules

The most enduring and influential contest in the history of SF and Fantasy

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  1. The Contest is open to entrants from all nations. (However, entrants should provide themselves with some means for written communication in English.) All themes of science fiction and fantasy illustrations are welcome: every entry is judged on its own merits only. No entry fee is required and all rights to the entry remain the property of the artist.
  2. By submitting to the Contest, the entrant agrees to abide by all Contest rules.
  3. The Contest is open to new and amateur artists who have not been professionally published and paid for more than three black-and-white story illustrations, or more than one process-color painting, in media distributed broadly to the general public. The ultimate eligibility criterion, however, is defined by the word “amateur”—in other words, the artist has not been paid for his artwork. If you are not sure of your eligibility, please write a letter to the Contest Administration with details regarding your publication history. Include a self-addressed and stamped envelope for the reply. You may also send your questions to the Contest Administration via e-mail.
  4. Each entrant may submit only one set of illustrations in each Contest quarter. The entry must be original to the entrant and previously unpublished. Plagiarism, infringement of the rights of others, or other violations of the Contest rules will result in disqualification. Winners in previous quarters are not eligible to make further entries.
  5. The entry shall consist of three illustrations done by the entrant in a color or black-and-white medium created from the artist’s imagination. Use of gray scale in illustrations and mixed media, photo and design software, and the use of photography in the illustrations are accepted. Art generated using programs such as artificial intelligence, or similar programs will be disqualified. Source and reference imagery may be requested at any time to ensure all rules have been met. Each illustration must represent a subject different from the other two.
  6. Entries should not be the original drawings, but should be color or black-and-white reproductions of the originals of a quality satisfactory to the entrant. Entries must be submitted unfolded and flat, in an envelope no larger than 9 inches by 12 inches. Images submitted electronically must be a minimum of 300 dpi, a minimum of 5 x 7 inches and a maximum of 8.5 x 11 inches. The file can’t exceed 10 mb. Only .jpg and .jpeg files will be accepted.
  7. All hard copy entries must be accompanied by a self-addressed return envelope of the appropriate size, with the correct US postage affixed. (Non-US entrants should enclose international postage reply coupons.) If the entrant does not want the reproductions returned, the entry should be clearly marked disposable copies: do not return. A business-size self-addressed envelope with correct postage (or valid e-mail address) should be included so that the judging results may be returned to the entrant. We only accept entries that do not require a delivery signature for us to receive them.
  8. To facilitate anonymous judging, each of the three photocopies must be accompanied by a removable cover sheet bearing the artist’s name, address, telephone number, e-mail address, and an identifying title for that work. The reproduction of the work should carry the same identifying title on the front of the illustration and the artist’s signature should be deleted. The Contest Administration will remove and file the cover sheets, and forward only the anonymous entry to the judges. Electronic submissions will separately include the artist’s legal name, address, telephone number, e-mail address which will identify each of three pieces of art and the artist’s signature on the art should be deleted.
  9. There will be three cowinners in each quarter. Each winner will receive a cash prize of US $500 and will be awarded a trophy. Winners will also receive eligibility to compete for the annual Grand Prize of $5,000 together with the annual Grand Prize trophy.
  10. For the annual Grand Prize Contest, the quarterly winners will be furnished with a specification sheet and a winning story from the Writers of the Future Contest to illustrate. In order to retain eligibility for the Grand Prize, each winner shall send to the Contest address his/her illustration of the assigned story within thirty (30) days of receipt of the story assignment.

    The yearly Grand Prize winner shall be determined by a panel of judges on the following basis only: Each Grand Prize judge’s personal opinion on the extent to which it makes the judge want to read the story it illustrates.

    The Grand Prize winner shall be announced and awarded, along with the trophies to the winners, at the L. Ron Hubbard awards ceremony held in the following year or when it is able to be held due to government regulations.

  11. The Contest has four quarters, beginning on October 1, January 1, April 1, and July 1. The year will end on September 30. To be eligible for judging in its quarter, an entry must be postmarked or received electronically no later than midnight on the last day of the quarter. Late entries will be included in the following quarter and the Contest Administration will so notify the entrant.
  12. Entries will be judged by professional artists only. Each quarterly judging and the Grand Prize judging may have different panels of judges. The decisions of the judges are entirely their own and are final and binding.
  13. Winners in each quarter will be individually notified of the results by mail or e-mail.
  14. This Contest is void where prohibited by law.
  15. To send your entry electronically, go to: and follow the instructions. To send your entry via mail send it to:

    L. Ron Hubbard’s Illustrators of the Future Contest
    7051 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, California 90028

  16. Visit the website for any Contest rules update at: