The Competition

With 14 categories, the ADAA is a competition for creative students of all disciplines.

by Yeojin Shin
Savannah College of Art and Design

How It Works

March
Feb. 24 Competition opens
April
May 2 Early-bird submission deadline
May
May 26 Early-bird Semifinalists are selected
June
Jun. 19 Final submission deadline
July
Jul. 25 Final Semifinalists selected
August
Aug. Final Judging
September
Sep. Category Winners selected

Eligibility

Participants must be over the age of 18 and a student enrolled in an accredited institution of higher education. Adobe tools must have contributed to the creation of the entry.

For a full list of eligibility criteria refer to the official rules.



Categories

Our 14 categories are divided into three segments depending on the purpose of the work

Judging Criteria:

1. Project originality and creative excellence.
2. Effectiveness in meeting a communication objective.
3. Demonstrating skills in applying Adobe products towards these ends.



Fine Art

Fine Art

for its own sake

Commercial

Commercial

for a client (fictional or real)

Social Impact

Social Impact

for a social or environmental cause

Fine Art

for its own sake

Photography

Abstract, Landscape, Portrait, Still Life, Image Editing

Graphic Design / Print

Abstract, Typography, Posters, Print Publications

Illustration

Abstract, Landscapes, Digital Painting, Character Design

Animation / Motion Graphics

Short animated films, stop-motion films, kinetic typography, hand-drawn animation

Video Editing / Post- Production

Short live-action films, special effect compositions

Commercial

for a client (fictional or real)

Photography

Architecture, Product, Fashion, Portrait, Image Editing

Print / Graphic / Illustration

Advert, Brand Identity, Posters and Banners, Infographics, Publications

Video Editing / Post- Production

Advert, Short Film, Music Videos, Film Titles, Special FX

Animation / Motion Graphics

Advert, Short Film, Music Video, Film Titles

Packaging Design

Food and Drink, Consumer Products

Web / App / Game Design

Landing page, Website, Web app, Mobile app

Social Impact

for a social or environmental cause

Photography / Print / Illustration / Graphic

Video Editing / Post- Production / Animation / Motion Graphics

Web / App / Game Design

Schools

With ADAA Finalist(s) from 2013–2015

PBD Schools

The dynamic community of Education Leaders

Board members

Meet the people who work behind the scenes to keep the Adobe Design Achievement Awards the world’s premier design, film, and interactive media competition for higher education students.

Photography

e.g. Abstract, Landscape, Portrait, Still Life, Image Editing, etc.

A single image or up to 10 images in a related series that’s photographic in nature and created for expression, aesthetics, or its own sake.

Download official rules [PDF]

Graphic Design / Print

e.g. Abstract, Typography, Posters, Print Publications, etc.

A digital or printed design created for expression, aesthetics, or its own sake.

Download official rules [PDF]

Illustration

e.g. Abstract, Landscapes, Digital Painting, Character Design, etc.

A digital or printed illustration created for expression, aesthetics, or its own sake.

Download official rules [PDF]

Animation / Motion Graphics

e.g. Short animated films, stop-motion films, kinetic typography, hand-drawn animation, etc.

A digital animation with any combination of computer-generated graphics, visual effects, composite text, or digital reproductions of drawn images created for expression, aesthetics, or its own sake. Only the first 5 minutes of the animation will be judged.

Download official rules [PDF]

Video Editing / Post-Production

e.g. Short live-action films, special effect compositions, etc.

Cinematic or live action video with any combination of computer-generated graphics, visual effects, or digital reproduction of images created for expression, aesthetics, or its own sake.

Download official rules [PDF]

Photography

e.g. Architecture, Product, Fashion, Portrait, Image Editing, etc.

A single image or up to 10 images in a related series that’s photographic in nature and created for a client (fictional or real) - often, but not necessarily, for the purpose of promoting a product, service, person, place, or event.

Download official rules [PDF]

Print / Graphic / Illustration

e.g. Advert, Brand Identity, Posters and Banners, Infographics, Publications, etc.

A digital or printed design or illustration created for a client (fictional or real) - often, but not necessarily, for the purpose of promoting a product, service, person, place, or event.

Download official rules [PDF]

Video Editing / Post-Production

e.g. Advert, Short Film, Music Videos, Film Titles, Special FX, etc.

Cinematic or live action video with any combination of computer-generated graphics, visual effects, or digital reproduction of images created for a client (fictional or real) - often, but not necessarily, for the purpose of promoting a product, service, person, place, or event.

Download official rules [PDF]

Animation / Motion Graphics

e.g. Advert, Short Film, Music Video, Film Titles, etc.

A digital animation with any combination of computer-generated graphics, visual effects, composite text, or digital reproductions of drawn images created for a client (fictional or real) - often, but not necessarily, for the purpose of promoting a product, service, person, place, or event.

Download official rules [PDF]

Packaging Design

e.g. Food and Drink, Consumer Products, etc.

Mockups or produced packaging, containers, labels, bags, and similar designs created for a client (fictional or real) - often, but not necessarily, for the purpose of promoting a product, service, person, place, or event.

Download official rules [PDF]

Web / App / Game Design

e.g. Landing page, Website, Web app, Mobile app, etc.

A website, mobile app, or game - interactive in nature - created for a client (fictional or real) - often, but not necessarily, for the purpose of promoting a product, service, person, place, or event.

Download official rules [PDF]

Photography / Print / Illustration / Graphic

A still graphic (or series of still graphics) created to influence change towards a social or environmental cause.

Download official rules [PDF]

Video Editing / Post-Production / Animation / Motion Graphics

A video, animation, or motion graphics piece created to influence change towards a social or environmental cause.

Download official rules [PDF]

Web / App / Game Design

A website, mobile app, or game created to influence change towards a social or environmental cause.

Download official rules [PDF]

Heidrun Mumper-Drumm

Vice President, ico-D and Professor, ArtCenter College of Design

A graphic designer, Heidrun Mumper-Drumm is a Professor and Director of Sustainability Initiatives at ArtCenter College of Design and Vice President of ADAA partner ico-D. Since 2003, she has focused on developing a design curriculum that teaches a lifecycle assessment methodology and integrates sustainability into the design process. This comprehensive approach expands both the context and the purpose of design, allowing the designer to address the multiple goals of form, function and sustainability. She speaks and conducts workshops for professional organizations and companies, and helped develop the sustainable product and service selection guidelines for the Sierra Club Green Home website.

As a former environmental engineer for Bechtel and Parsons Engineering, her background includes nuclear, geothermal, and solar and wind energy projects, as well as environmental management for NASA and the US Air Force. In addition to teaching, she is engaged in research to develop a methodology and tools for the integration of lifecycle thinking into the design and development of sustainable products and services.

Penny Ann Dolin

Arizona State University

Penny Ann Dolin has taught in ASU’s Graphic Information Technology program for 15 years and is currently its program director. This major explores web technologies, print and design, and visual (photo and video) technologies. Dolin founded the GIT Commercial Photography Studio at ASU and manages the Technical Imaging Lab, which explores high-speed imaging and stroboscopic and thermal photography. She has been involved in numerous STEM grants, incorporating photography and science in an accessible and fun way for K–12 students. Dolin has worked with Adobe software for nearly 20 years, and it has been at the core of many of her curriculums.

Klaus Delanghe

Howest University College

Klaus Delanghe is a digital media expert who merges code and design skills. Based in Belgium, he teaches web design and development at Howest West Flanders. He plays a leading role in the New Media and Communication Technology IT program and was one of the founding members of the college’s Devine/Digital Design & Development program, a three-year curriculum focused on screen design and development skills with the aim of molding the next generation of interactive designers and developers. Delanghe speakes at various international conferences and is a founder of the Mulit-Mania conference, which annually welcomes an inspiring mix of 2,000+ students, educators, and industry professionals.

Jean-Benoit Lévy

Visual communicator, San Francisco

Jean-Benoit Lévy is a visual communicator who has been active in graphic design since 1983 after his studies at the Basel School of Design in Switzerland with teachers such as Wolfgang Weingart and Armin Hofmann. Levy became a U.S. citizen in 2008 and is now living and working in San Francisco, California, as founder of Studio AND.

From logos to corporate identities, from postage stamps to coin design, from street posters to book design, his professional experience is wide. His work has been awarded in international competitions and published in books and magazines.

Since 1991 Levy has taught regularly, including courses at San Jose State University and Academy of Art University. He also lectures at various schools in Europe, Japan, and the United States. In 1988 he opened his studio “A N D”. This studio, located in Basel have been active in Switzeralnd until 2006. He is a member of AIGA and the Alliance Graphique Internationale (AGI).

Willy Wong

chief creative officer at NYC & Company

Since 2006, Willy Wong has led the creative vision and strategy for global branding, advertising, and design of major initiatives and programs for the city of New York. Wong also serves as graduate thesis advisor at the School of Visual Arts in both the MFA Interaction Design and MFA Designer as Entrepreneur programs, adjunct at New York University’s Center for Advanced Digital Applications, President of AIGA/NY, and advisory board member to SXSW Interactive.

Andrew McAllister

OCAD University, Toronto, Ontario

Andrew McAllister manages the creative computing environment at OCAD, from student and faculty computing to leading innovative web development.

As a practicing artist, McAllister creates video, audio, interactive, and photographic works, some of which have been funded by the Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, and Toronto Arts Council. McAllister’s videos and photographs have been shown at the International Biennale of Contemporary Art (Prague), the CONTACT Photography Festival (Toronto), the imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival (Toronto), Century Gallery (London) and Sis Boom Bah (Toronto) in Out and About, GARDENfresh (Chicago), Oxo Tower (London) in Response/Ability, and FotoFestival Naarden (Netherlands).

Mike Patterson

animator and video director

Mike Patterson is an animator and director of music videos, commercials, and blended media projects. He began his career in 1985 by animating the epic MTV hit Take On Me for a-ha. Teaming up with his wife, Candace Reckinger, he directed a string of MTV hits that included Suzanne Vega’s Luka, Sting’s Be Still My Beating Heart, and Paula Abdul’s Opposites Attract, which won the Grammy Award for Best Music Video.

As a director at Rhythm & Hues Studios, he worked extensively with blending live action with animation and visual effects. His work has received numerous awards, including Clios, and has been featured in the Super Bowl. A DGA veteran since 1993, he continues to direct and design commercials internationally.

Patterson studied animation with Jules Engel at CalArts, where he produced his Student Academy Award–winning animated film Commuter. In fall of 2006, Commuter was added into the Museum of Modern Art’s permanent collection, along with seven Patterson-Reckinger music video clips.

Andrew Phelps

Rochester Institute of Technology

Andrew Phelps is founder and director of the RIT Center for Media, Arts, Games, Interaction, and Creativity (MAGIC). In 2001, Phelps offered the first course in game programming at RIT. The course quickly grew into a concentration of courses. He led a faculty team in designing both bachelor’s and master’s programs in game design and development. He also created the Department of Interactive Games & Media, which became a school in 2011. Phelps is now a full professor in that school. Alumni of this program have worked throughout the industry and have had a profound impact on the field.

Brian Lucid

Massachusetts College of Art and Design

Brian Lucid is a designer, educator, and consultant whose personal and professional work spans from traditional communications in static and temporal media to algorithmic design and physical/digital interfaces.

Lucid is a professor of graphic design at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Boston, Massachusetts, where he also serves as one of the core faculty members of the Dynamic Media Institute, a graduate program focused on design research at the intersection of technology and communication.

At MassArt he has developed innovative curriculum in the areas of typography, visual systems, information design, interaction design, user experience, and service design. Recently, he has been writing curriculums introducing visual thinkers (and the math-adverse) to computer programming for creative applications.

Lucid speaks at national and international conferences dealing with dynamic media, information design, and design education. He was the co-organizer of the 2008 AIGA design education conference titled Massaging Media 2: Graphic Design in the Age of Dynamic Media, the first AIGA conference specifically focused on dynamic media.

Recent clients range from design agencies to cultural organizations to corporations, including Adobe, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, The Barbarian Group, Upromise, Proximity Lab, the Education Development Center (EDC), Trinity Communications, and SolidWorks.

Stephan Powilat

creative director at LABOR, Germany

Stephan Powilat, a 2006 ADAA Print Design category team winner, is co-founder of LABOR - Modern Communications, an agency based in Mainz, Germany. The work of Powilat and his team has won awards from TDC, ADC, Red Dot, IF Design, and the Raymond Loewy Foundation. Since 2007 he and partners Mathias Vogel and Florian Lange have been responsible for the Adobe Design Achievement Awards creative work. Powilat also does work for numerous and varied clients, from cancer research and nonprofit associations to political institutions and TV broadcast companies, combining the disciplines of design, software, and marketing.