Student blog

Why You Should Submit Your Work To Competitions

Getting your work seen is critical for someone who works in a creative field – especially for a student. This includes film, animation, fashion, textile design and many other creative industries. With so much competition, it can be difficult to get recognition for your work without actively putting it out there for people to see. This is why it’s important to search for opportunities such as film festivals, fashion shows, and other competitions where you could present your work and be in with a chance of winning an award.

I’m currently studying the BA (Hons) Computer Animation Arts course at UCA’s  Rochester campus and I just completed my second year. The final project for Year 2 on CAA is ‘Adaptation’ – where we chose to adapt something into something else, for example, a novel or song into a CGI animation, character, digital set, and so on. I chose to adapt my experience with mental illness into an animation.

This resulted in Dysmorphia – an animation representing my experiences of Body Dysmorphic Disorder, Anorexia Nervosa, and Generalised Anxiety Disorder. I was very proud of my work and received good feedback. My tutors even encouraged me to try submitting my film to some festivals. While I was hesitant at first, I chose to use to submit my film to some festivals. Some of the festivals cost money to enter, but lots offered student discounts and some were free.

So far I’ve been lucky enough to be officially selected for the Mindfield Film Festival in Los Angeles, the Miami Independent Film Festival in Miami Beach, and the SHORT to the Point International Film Festival (winning films get screened in 30 cities in Romania). I was also fortunate enough to be a finalist for the FROSTBITE International Film Festival at Colorado Springs and to win the Best Experimental title for the month of July in the 3-Minute Film Festival. This meant my film was screened in Santa Barbara, California!

I never thought my film would be selected, but this proves that you never know until you try! Entering your work into festivals or competitions could give you the boost you need to enhance your CV and land you your dream job. There are opportunities to get your work seen everywhere, whether it’s a film festival, an online competition, a fashion show, or something else. There’s no harm in trying, you may just be surprised with the outcome.

- Deanna