Grand Space Opera The Book

Grand Space Opera Sponsors

• Boxx Technologies

• PNY Technologies

• Softimage

• Discreet


• The Gnomon Workshop

• Ballistic Publishing

• Luxology

• Pixologic

• Corel

• Ballistic Publishing

• Turbo Squid

• Digital Tutors

Your Mission

Create an iconic image that captures a moment of galactic civilisation or conflict. Entrants are to construct an entire, complete scene depicting anything that is relevant to the grand space opera theme.

Images should be iconic – the stuff that legends and myths are built from. The subject could be an individual or group, a space ship or fleet, a city or city-world. Whatever it is, it should capture a pivotal moment that is part of a vast galactic civilisation or conflict.

Two categories will run simultaneously for the Grand Space Opera Challenge: 3D Stills and 2D Illustrations. This Challenge is a Work-In-Progress Challenge -- all contestants are required to post their work-in-progress images for community to critique/comment in order to qualify.

Guidelines and Tips

• The key phrase in this challenge is “Grand Space Opera”. You need to create a visual icon that captures and encapsulates the truly epic scale. Book covers are a great example of the sort of iconic image we are after.
• If you're unsure of the idea of a space opera, then think along the lines of “Star Wars”.
• We are not looking for pictures of flying saucers, green humanoid aliens or spacemen with laser blasters. Please be original and imaginative.
• Be original. Anything to close to a published image will be excluded to avoid any potential copyright violations. It's fine to be inspired by Star Wars, Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, Stargate, Babylon 5 or any pre-existing stories, but no copies please.

How the Challenge will be Run

This challenge will be a WIP (Work in Progress) Challenge. Each challenger is required to submit Work In Progress (WIP) images, from the initial concept sketch (for both 2D and 3D entries) to wire frame models, texturing in progress all the way to the final render (for 3D) and final colored piece (for 2D). The purpose is that everyone can learn from each other, offer feedback and critiques.

1. Enter the Challenge by registering yourself.
2. Submit your work in progress images on a regular basis.
3. Participate in the community by critiquing other challenger's works in the respective forums.
4. Submit your final entry by 17 January 2005 (GMT). Do not rush - get your entry in early.
5. Winners need to produce ‘Making of' articles to be eligible for prizes.

You are required to submit work in progress images, obtain feedback and give feedback to other challengers in the WIP challenge. This is a requirement of the challenge and failure to do so may result in penalties during final judging. Community interaction is a must!

All winners are required to write ‘making of' articles accompanied with high resolution work-in-progress stills, to be eligible for prizes. This is a requirement of the Work-In-Progress challenge so that others in the community can learn.


Each challenger is required to submit images for the following milestones:

For 3D Stills:
Concept Sketch - JPG (online)
Modeling - JPG (online)
Texturing - JPG (online)
Lighting - JPG (online)
Rendering - JPG (online)
Post Effects and Compositing, JPG (online)
Final Image - JPG (online) AND print resolution TIF (FTP)

For 2D Illustrations:
Concept Sketch - JPG (online)
Line Art - JPG (online)
Coloring WIP - JPG (online)
Final Coloring - JPG (online)
Final Image - JPG (online) AND print resolution TIF (FTP)
Any challenger that does not submit the above images by 17 January 2005, will not quality for final judging.


All submissions will be in JPG format, with the exception of the final image, which will be both JPG, and a print-resolution TIF (300dpi).

Final Image Size

Your final image dimensions should be print resolution (as large as you can possibly render). Do not send in a low-resolution placeholder and ask us to get back to you, as we won't.

• A guideline is 2657 pixels wide and/or 3636 high, 300 DPI (portrait), or
3636 pixels wide and/or 2657 pixels high, 300 DPI (landscape). Your image
aspect ratio and layout will dictate the final resolution. These are given
as guidelines. To be safe, render images that are larger than these
• DO NOT upsample your images to achieve higher resolution. If you cannot reach the desired full-page resolution, just send in what you have.
Information about the final file submission will be emailed to all contestants in December 2004. We will only accept final submissions in January 2005.


1. All CGTalk members may enter the CG Challenge. Membership is free of charge.
2. Employees of sponsors are not allowed to enter this challenge.
3. Pre-fabricated models are not allowed to be used. These include models generated from Poser, Daz3D, Terragen, Bryce and other parametric model generation software.
4. You can enter the two categories simultaneously, but you cannot enter images with the same concept/subject matter in both. Each must be a distinctly different piece.
The Challenge starts 18 October 2004 and will run until 17 January 2005 Midnight GMT. No late entries will be accepted.

Terms and Conditions for Artists

• The sponsors of this Challenge may use shortlisted and winning artwork for marketing purposes in the context of the Challenge, and will clearly credit the artist.
• No artwork will be used in any fashion without credit given to the artist.
• No artwork will knowingly be sold, in whole or in part, by the sponsors outside of the context of the Challenge.
• The artist will be asked permission for the use of their artwork if outside of the scope of the contest.
• The artist is allowed to use the images created for personal promotion. E.g. submission for EXPOSE' and other galleries.
• CGNetworks may use submitted artwork in its Challenge publication to document the contest. All artwork will clearly credit the artist, and all artists are contacted prior to publishing for final image approval. All proceeds from each Challenge publication will go towards funding the current and future Challenges.

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