Design Competition

Each year, graduate and undergraduate students display their design work at the annual SETC Convention, get critiqued, meet professional designers, network, and compete to win cash and experience awards! Winners of the competition receive cash, product or experience awards (depending on the competition), a certificate of achievement, and recognition in SETC News.

In order to participate in the 2021 SETC Design Competition, students are required to register as an individual and select Design Competition as an activity. Once you have registered, you will receive an email with further information and instructions about how to access your selected opportunities.

For Graduate and Undergraduate Students

Entrants have a chance to be critiqued by Distinguished Career Designers — modern masters of design with national and international reputations. The experts use an open, one-on-one critique format to offer invaluable learning for all in attendance — whether a student, professor or professional.

General Guidelines (Please see below for specific area guidelines)

  • You may enter one entry in each competition category.
  • Registration and all applications must be completed by February 13, 2021, 11:59 pm ET.
  • Your gallery submission must be completed by February 18, 11:59 pm ET.
  • Late entries may be allowed if space permits, but may be declared ineligible for awards.
  • Your school must be an active Institutional member of SETC for you to win an award.
  • We reserve the right to refuse to exhibit entries that do not adhere to the stated criteria.
  • Entry must be your own work.
  • Entry cannot be of previously submitted work.
  • Entry can be theoretical or realized original projection design work from one production.
  • Do not mail the entries to the SETC office.
  • Upload all elements to the website by the designated time.
  • Entrants MUST be present for the critique of their work.
  • Once entrants click submit, changes will not be possible to the submission.

Submission Guidelines

  • There are upload limits for file sizes. Please consider these limits when preparing materials.
  • Your entry should be submitted as a single PDF file saved with your name, title of show and submission area. (Example: “Maggie Smith A Christmas Carol Costume Crafts.pdf”)
  • Please do not display your school’s name, your business card or resume. If your school’s name is already on drafting title blocks, you do not have to remove it.

Awards

Separate Graduate & Undergraduate Division winners for each area:

1st Place – $125
2nd Place – $75
3rd Place – $50

Fees

For students

Regular
$20
11/9/20 – 1/22/21

HELPFUL ADVICE

  • The content of the work should not compete with its presentation.
  • Be neat, but do not overproduce. Examples of overproduction might include: framing, fancy backgrounds, elaborate titles, or embedded music. Fancy printed labels are fine, but hand-drafted neat labels are just as good.
  • Edit and proofread your Design Statement. Be concise and make sure it focuses on your design approach to the show and not a plot summary.
  • Keep in mind a poor photo or scan can negatively affect your entry. High resolution, well-lit, quality images will best showcase your work.
  • Order your pages or slides in a way that best highlights your process and execution in your design.
  • The judges for each category will carefully review each entrant’s work, giving special consideration to the merits of the concept and how that concept has been translated visually into the work that is presented.
  • The judges will assess the quality of the entry, the clarity of the conceptual statement, the graphical presentation (renderings, sketches, models, drafting), the research (specifically considering how it ties into the project) and the overall presentation of the work. Additionally, the judges may take into consideration information gathered during the feedback session that they hold with the entrants.

COSTUME CRAFTS

Minimum Requirements:

  • Craft: You may enter 2 areas, or you may have several pieces judged together; i.e. 3 hats.
  • Design Statement: one half-page or less with your name, the title of the show and describing the process of creating the item and any problems that you solved in doing so.
  • Any sketches, research, process photos and documentation, and finished craft photos. You may include the original costume design renderings if needed.
  • Finished craft photos may be displayed on a form and/or from production

Crafts will be judged, at a minimum, on the following criteria:

  • Quality of craftsmanship and finish
  • Historical accuracy (if applicable) and research showing such
  • Appropriateness of craft, if from a production
  • Inventive use of materials or techniques in creating the craft.


COSTUME DESIGN

Minimum Requirements:

  • Design Statement: one half-page or less with your name, the title of the show and a description of your approach to the costume design.
  • 6 or more color costume renderings with fabric swatches included.

Suggested supporting elements: 

  • Selected Research materials
  • Selected Preliminary sketches
  • A costume plot 
  • Budget
  • Photographs if it is a realized production

Designs will be judged, at a minimum, on the following criteria:

  • Historical accuracy (if applicable) and research showing such
  • Appropriateness of makeup design for the production/character
  • Inventive use of materials or techniques in the design.


COSTUME TECHNOLOGY

Minimum Requirements:

  • Entry:  your entry for Costume Technology may include multiple related pieces that you patterned and/or constructed i.e. multiple pieces of one costume.  
  • Concept Statement: one half-page or less your name, the title of the show and describing the process of creating the item and any problems that you solved in doing so.

Suggested supporting elements: 

  • Any construction sketches or research
  • Patterns
  • Process Photos and documentation
  • Fabric swatches 
  • Original Costume Renderings (if applicable)
  • Final photos may be displayed on a form and/or from production

Costume technology entries will be judged on, at a minimum, the following criteria:

  • Quality of craftsmanship and finish
  • Historical accuracy (if applicable) and research showing such
  • Appropriateness of craft if from a production
  • Inventive use of materials or techniques in creating the craft


LIGHTING DESIGN

SPONSORED BY ELECTRONIC THEATRE CONTROLS, Inc.

Minimum requirements:

  • Design Statement: one half-page or less with your name, the title of the show and describing your approach to the lighting design.
  • Light plot drawn in ¼” = 1’-0” or ½” = 1’-0” scale using USITT standard symbols
  • Dimmer/control schedule, magic sheets, instrument schedule
  • Hanging Section (scenic designer’s is acceptable)
  • Photographs of realized production if production was realized

Suggested supporting elements: 

  • Research materials, preliminary sketches, cue sheets, storyboards.


MAKEUP DESIGN

Minimum requirements:

  • Design Statement: one half-page or less with your name, the title of the show and describing your approach to the design and process for realization.
  • 6 or more high-quality photos of completed makeup application.
  • May include reference costume design renderings if needed
  • Research materials and preliminary sketches
  • Makeup plots and product lists

Makeup will be judged, at a minimum, on the following criteria

  • Quality of makeup application and translation on stage/under lights
  • Historical accuracy (if applicable) and research showing such
  • Appropriateness of makeup design for the production/character
  • Collaboration with other design elements (costumes and hair, specifically)
  • Inventive use of materials/products to create the finished look


PROJECTION DESIGN

SPONSORED BY Broadway Media

Minimum Requirements:

  • Design Statement: one half-page or less with your name, the title of the show and describing your approach to the projection design.
  • 6 or more color costume renderings with fabric swatches included.
  • Technical Drawings & Paperwork which may include:
  • Theatre ground plan of the production showing all projector/surface locations with throw information
    • Section drawing
    • Photographs of realized production or digital renderings of theoretical project 

Suggested supporting elements: 

  • Video of projection sequences (no longer than 3 minutes in length).
  • Hookup Plot or Hardware Schematic
  • Research materials 
  • Cue sheets


Properties

Minimum Requirements:

  • Maximum of 3 items from an actual production OR project unrelated to a specific production.  Props are “non-costume items used by an actor (hand prop) or set dressing including furniture and decorative elements of the set even if not handled by an actor.” Uncertain if an item qualifies? Send photo to mlecken@clemson.edu
  • A sketch true to the item, whether or not entrant designed item. 
  • Research if necessary.
  • Design Statement:  One-half page or less, describing the process of creating the item and any problems that you solved in doing so. 

Props will be judged on, at a minimum, the following criteria:

  • True to design – whether the item was designed and built by the same individual, or designed by someone else and built by the entrant, it should be accompanied by a sketch and supporting research if necessary and true to the designer’s intention.  Historical accuracy (if applicable), as well as appropriateness if from a production, will be considered.
  • Creativity – consideration should be given to items that utilize old techniques in different ways or that use new techniques or experimentation but not at the expense of beautifully executed traditional items.
  • Elegance of technique – the quality of craftsmanship and finish.


SCENE DESIGN

Minimum Requirements:

  • Ground Plan at least ¼”=1’-0” scale
  • Color sketch, scaled model or painter’s elevations
  • Design statement: one half page or less with your name, the title of the show and a description of your design approach to the scenic design.

Suggested supporting elements: 

  • Research materials & preliminary sketches
  • Full drawing package including sections, elevations and detail drawings in addition to the required ground plan
  • Photos if realized production

Designs will be judged, at a minimum, on the following criteria:

  • Historical accuracy (if applicable) and research showing such
  • Appropriateness of makeup design for the production/character
  • Inventive use of materials or techniques in the design.


SOUND DESIGN

SPONSORED BY Shure

Minimum requirements:

Written Presentation:

  • Design Statement: one half-page or less with your name, the title of the show and describing your approach to the sound design.
  • Cue sheets samples
  • A theatre ground plan of the production showing all speaker locations, placements and signal flow.
  • Any accompanying documentation about the entrant’s research supporting their overall design or design process  

Audio Presentation:
Entrants should present audio files that represent the overall design of the show.  This can consist of audio samples of the following work by the entrant:

  • Cues built or recorded
  • Music compiled or created
  • Other sounds used for the show
  • Atmospheric Soundscapes used in the production  
  • The compiled audio samples can be interesting to listen to on their own and can consist of multiple samples of sound(s) and music combined in creative ways. If a single .wav encompassing the production is submitted the entire length should be no longer than 3 minutes in length.  

Video (Optional): Sound Designers have the option of presenting a video file containing the above audio samples in addition to visual elements (photos, video clips, etc.) provided that all visuals are images from the production or are directly related to their research. 


TECHNICAL DIRECTION

Minimum Requirements:

  • Design Statement:  One-half page or less, describing the process of the build and implementation and any obstacles that you solved in doing so.
  • Production Book Sample Pages in PDF form
  • Examples of the budget (estimated and realized), build calendar, notes, research, other applicable items
  • Designer drawings (you will not be judged on the designer’s work, this will be for reference) should have piece used for representation.
  • Working drawings
  • Documented pictures of set pieces, showing backstage (internal) structure as well as stage-side (external).  Showing stage side under work light and also stage light.

Technical Directors will be judged on, at a minimum, the following criteria:

  • True to the intention of the design – whether the item was built by the same individual or a team it should ultimately represent the work of the design team.
  • Creativity – consideration should be given to items that utilize old techniques in different and appropriate ways or that use new techniques and bring innovation to the industry.
  • Production Book – paperwork management
  • Calendar and Budget Management – effective use of stock, cost saving measures, materials and labor.  Notation of calendar changes and explanations.
  • Effective Technical Design – technical drawings, use of modern materials, consideration of how product will be developed and utilized.  Construction/load in considerations.

INDIVIDUAL REGISTRATION

ORGANIZATION REGISTRATION

INDIVIDUAL REGISTRATION


ORGANIZATION REGISTRATION