6. The little "extras" can make or break an entry. This means make up, fashion, nails...everything. In one competition, I was asked to select the finish that I would most want to run on the cover of Modern Salon Magazine. My favorite photo (great model, great hair, well photographed). had the model's hands in the photo. Her polish was chipped and a couple cuticles were chewed up. Obviously this photo did not win. In a live competition last year all the judges were distracted by one model because she could not walk in heels. It made it difficult to even LOOK at her, impacting the points. That entry...which was GREAT....sadly did not win.
7. Get your entry in ON TIME and follow up to make sure it was received. This could be accomplished as simply as sending as registered mail or with receipt requested.
8. If possible, know who will be judging your work. Consumer editors will look for something more commercial, while trade editors will look for an entry that is stronger and more inspirational. Fortunately, most competitions are judged by an assortment of industry professionals, so you can just do what you do best!
If you do win, make sure to be humble, grateful and gracious. Everyone will be watching...including the judges for the next competition.
If you DON'T win, make sure you have created work that makes you proud. Be a good sport and take the high road. The bottom line, just the exercise of entering is important. You will be surprised how you improve with each entry. Creativity is ongoing. Learn from each other and allow yourself to be inspired...even from fellow competitors!
Included here is an interview with John Donato who I chatted with while he was in the middle of judging the most recent North American Trend Vision Awards (NATVA) for Wella. He offers some great advice and insight. It's just over three minutes, but worth the view for anyone entering a competition.