Create a cover design for Computer Arts and see it printed

It's the ultimate dream brief, in this exciting new competition presented by Computer Arts magazine and D&AD New Blood.

Computer Arts has a long history of showcasing and supporting new talent, as well as creating eye-catching, innovative magazine covers.

This summer, in partnership with our friends at D&AD New Blood, we're combining the two to search for an exciting new cover artist.

Win a £500 commission

The brief we've set with D&AD is simple: create an original cover illustration for Computer Arts' forthcoming New Talent special.

The winning entry will receive a commission fee of £500, and will be featured in a short profile in the magazine, and on Creative Bloq.

As an added incentive, the chosen design will also receive FREE entry into the 2015 D&AD Professional Awards.

Who's eligible to enter?

We're keen to commission someone we haven't come across or worked with before – new talent for New Talent – so current students, recent graduates, and designers up to age 30 who have never been commissioned by Computer Arts before.

NOTE: Students or recent graduates (within the last two years) who are over 30 are also eligible.

The brief is open to designers in any country in the world, provided they meet the above criteria.

About CA's special issues

During 2014, Computer Arts has released several 'themed' issues, including the Money Issue (223), the Global Design Issue (226) and coming up next, the Innovation Issue (228, on sale 29 May).

Sporting very different styles of artwork by Andrew Gibb, Eiko Ojala and Thomas Burden respectively, these collectable issues have made use of special cover treatments such as scratch-off varnish and glow-in-the-dark ink, applied by our print finishing partner Celloglas.

Sources of inspiration

The New Talent special (issue 230) will be released at the end of July in the UK - just as design graduate show season comes to a close.

It will include an extended piece on the rising stars of design and illustration, as well as a more practical feature looking at how to find, hire and develop new talent from an employer’s perspective.

Themes such as ‘fresh talent’, ‘rising stars’ or ‘getting noticed’ could all be potential starting points for your illustration - but feel free to be creative and explore something more abstract and conceptual.

Things to bear in mind

For the print edition, there is scope to work with CMYK plus up to two Pantone spot-colours, UV spot varnish and also potentially a special finish supplied by our print finishing partners Celloglas, so think creatively in terms of how your illustration could be enhanced.

The award-winning iPad edition of Computer Arts

The award-winning iPad edition of Computer Arts

Also consider how the illustration will work on the interactive iPad edition of the magazine. This can be discussed once a winner is chosen, although it’s something to bear in mind from the outset in terms of how different elements could be animated, for instance.

Essential requirements

  • Illustration must work within a square canvas of 217x215mm (this is including a 3mm bleed on all edges)
  • Final file must be 300dpi or vector for the print edition
  • Main headline - 'NEW TALENT' - must be primary focus
  • This headline may be illustrated, but it must be clearly legible
  • Space must be allowed for a strapline underneath the heading of roughly this length: "Discover the rising stars of design and illustration: who to hire, who to commission and who to be inspired by" (this is subject to change)

How to enter

Download a PDF template of the Computer Arts cover to use as a starting point. This includes the masthead, and the canvas area that you have to work with for your design.

When your concept is complete, simply submit a low-resolution JPEG to - you can also get in touch with us at this address with any queries about the brief.

Deadline for entries: Midday (BST) Friday 6 June 2014

Submissions will be judged by the CA team based on creativity of concept, quality of execution and of course its suitability for use as a magazine cover.

Hi-res artwork (or any amends!) will only be requested from the chosen designer once the commission is set up. All IP remains with the creators, until a contract is set up with the winner.

We will also showcase a selection of the best entries on Creative Bloq, including a paragraph about the artist and a portfolio link.

Download the template today!