Key Colours Competition | International Award for the best Picture book concept | June 2022 | Free

Key Colours Competition | International Award for the best Picture book concept | June 2022 | Free

About the Key Colors Award

Clavis Publishing, New York launches Key Colors competiton, the two-yearly national contest for illustrators of children’s books. Only a children’s book, intended for children from 2 to 7 years old, can qualify for the award. A professional jury will judge the artistic, literary and child-oriented qualities of the works.

The winner receives 8,000 dollars and the winning work will be published by Clavis Publishing.

From all entries, a selection will be made for a children’s books exhibition in New York.

Apart from the winner, other entries may also be considered for publication by Clavis. The award and the resulting picture books will be largely discussed in the press and at book fairs abroad. For many illustrators, this unique award is the start of a successful international career.

Deadline: June 30th 2022

Rules for participation

International Award for the best Picture book concept

A professional jury will judge the artistic, literary and child-oriented qualities of the works. The
winner receives 8,000 dollars and the winning work will be published by Clavis Publishing. From all
the entries a selection will be made for the exhibition on children’s books illustrations, which may
travel around.
The award and the resulting picture books will be largely discussed in the press and at book fairs
abroad. For many illustrators, this unique award is the start of a successful international career.

  • Each illustrator based in the United States and Canada may participate in the contest, notwithstanding, language or experience. Participation of groups is allowed as well. The submitted projects have to meet the requirements mentioned in the technical data (see annex).
  • Are excluded from participation: the members of the jury, staff of Clavis Publishing and the blood relations and in-laws of the members of the jury up to the second degree.
  • The book is intended for children of the age from 2 to 7 years old. Only a children’s book can therefore be eligible for award.
  • By the participation in the contest the illustrators and/or authors guarantee that the submitted work is fully original and was never published before in any form whatsoever. They also guarantee that they have the full copyright on it and that they can transfer the full rights of first publication to Clavis Publishing.
  • The winner receives 8000 dollars. The jury may however come to the conclusion that no contribution has sufficient qualities to be eligible for award.
  • The winning work will be published by Clavis Publishing, on the conditions of the skeleton contract and the usual fee in the business. Works which are not awarded with the first prize can also be recommended for publishing to Clavis Publishing by the jury. The title will be defined in consultation with the author.
  • The competing works should be sent digital.
  • The regulations can be consulted at www.clavis-publishing.com/keycolors. The terms of entry ends on June 30th, 2022.
  • The text must be sent in the original language. If the original language is not English language, a
  • translation in English should be added.
  • Each presented work must have a title. The title of the work must be written in a separate file.
  • The submitted works will be judged by a jury of 5 experts at children’s books, including an illustrator and the winner of the previous edition. The winner of this edition will become member of the jury for the next edition.
  • The decision of the jury will be announced during the summer of 2022.
  • The illustrator will have at all time a copy of his/her work.
  • The participating illustrators commit themselves to collaborate in the exhibition which will be organized in New York.
  • The jury decides on all cases where the regulations could have left some doubts. No correspondence will be conducted on the decisions taken. They are irrevocable.

Digital Entry

Use the form on the website to submit your work. Please make sure the files you upload contain the following requirements:

  1. A children’s story for ages 2 to 7, written on a max of 4 pages, divided into text blocks.
  2. A full-size mockup, sketched in pencil, with all the prints of the book as they will be worked
    out afterwards. The text blocks are indicated on all these pages.
  3. Three of the above-mentioned plates fully worked out in color on at least 1 entire page. The
    chosen technique is free.
  4. Name the files with your first and last name, title of your work and a number.

Format of the book

You choose one of the following usual formats.

  • 9.84 x 10.24 inches
  • 11.42 x 8.27 inches (portrait or landscape)
  • 9.25 x 12.80 inches

The story will be told in exactly 24 pages (cover, end paper and title page not included), starting on
the left page. The original drawings should be full size, with a bleed of 0.2 inches.


The jury judges:

The literary and child oriented qualities of the story.
The bringing into vision of the story.
The artistic qualities of the illustrations.

Click Here to Apply | More Details

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