Thursday, March 15, 2012

UWG Art Students Finalists in Design Contest

For the fourth consecutive year University of West Georgia art students are finalists in the AJC Peachtree Road Race T-shirt Design Contest.

As in previous years, they are students in Clint Samples’ graphic design class. All took the class, Digital Media for Artists, last fall. They are: Caitlyn Weathers, 22, a senior; Clarissa Robinson, 24, a junior; and Mallory Royal, 22, who graduated last year.

They are three out of the five finalists chosen by a panel of judges. Since 2009, UWG has dominated the contest. It scored winners last year and in 2010 and fielded 15 finalists in the last four years.

The winner will be announced on July 4, the day of the Atlanta Track Club’s premier road race.

To see all of the designs and to vote go to:

One vote can be cast per day.

Samples, an associate professor of art, urges his students to submit their best work by revising and fine-tuning their designs. But he also prepares them for possible rejection.

“It’s like entering an art exhibition. There’s always a chance of rejection,” Samples said. “That’s something you have to live with as an artist. We have been blessed. We’ve had this great run of designs. I always try to use the previous years as a challenge.”

Weathers’ design is a flag with the bars and blue field made up of sneaker prints. She dipped several pairs of sneakers in black paint, then photographed them and used Adobe Illustrator to change the colors and create the image.

Her inspiration was the flag used for the opening of the race. “I wanted to include that. But I didn’t want it to be just an image of the flag,” said Weathers, who graduated from Temple High School in 2008.

“I was really surprised that mine was chosen as a finalist,” she said. “I think a lot of the other designs in the class were a lot better than mine. I was really honored that they chose mine.”

Robinson’s design includes brightly-colored patches in the shape of a peach. “I brought out my painting sketchbook. I had a lot of different colors.” She used those as a jumping off point and used the software to get the shapes and colors she wanted.

“I’m really surprised,” said Robinson, who graduated from Collins Hill High School in Suwanee in 2006. “This is my first time doing something like this.”

Royal’s design is a painted peach. Stars in some of the letters evoke an Independence Day theme.

In 2011 the winner of the design contest was Jessica Ferguson and two of her classmates were finalists. The 2010 winner, Allison Bennett, was also Samples’ student and three of her classmates were finalists. Two of Samples’ students were finalists in 2009.

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