Search Giant Announces Its Annual Doodle 4 Google Contest
February 5, 2014

Search Giant Announces Its Annual Doodle 4 Google Contest

[ Watch the Video: Google Announces New Student Doodle Contest ]

Brett Smith for - Your Universe Online

Google’s “Doodle” artworks have become known for their whimsical take on holidays or noteworthy historical events.

On Tuesday, the search giant announced the start of its seventh annual Doodle 4 Google contest, which invites school-age children to submit a special doodle based on the theme, “if I could invent one thing to make the world a better place.”

“Doodles are meant to surprise and delight people when they visit the Google homepage,” the company wrote on the contest’s website. “Who better to surprise and delight than talented and creative young artists! Google would not exist today if it weren’t for creativity, passion, and imagination so we love to celebrate and promote these values in our younger users.”

On April 29, a group of judges will select finalists and one winner from each state. These finalists will be flown to Google headquarters in Mountain View, California for a day of creative workshops.

Then, starting on April 29, the general public will vote on the Internet for the top winner in each age bracket: grades K - 3, grades 4 - 5, grades 6 - 7, grades 8 - 9, and grades 10 - 12. Google administrators will pick the overall winner from among the top vote-getters, who will be awarded a $30,000 scholarship and $50,000 for their school. The winner will also collaborate with the Google team to animate their doodle for the site.

"The addition is a cool parallel to the way that our own doodles have 'evolved' from static to the crazy interactive ones over the years," a Google spokesperson told Mashable.

In conjunction with the contest, Google is also offering up virtual field trips to its headquarters and "connected classroom" sessions, where teachers and students can connect over the Internet with Doodle staffers and find out about the creative process behind the artworks.

Contest entries, which can be sent in digitally or by conventional mail, must be in by March 20. A year ago, Doodle 4 Google obtained 130,000 submissions, up from 116,000 in 2012.

Google said the entries will be judged on four basic criteria: artistic merit, creativity, theme communication and appropriateness toward the theme.

“Eligible Doodles must be two-dimensional and scannable,” Google said in a statement. “This includes any artistic material that will remain flat on the page. This could include: paint, pencils, crayons, markers, chalk, pastels, charcoal, or cray-pas. Computer-generated images are also accepted.”

“This means that any materials that may cause the image to be three-dimensional will not be accepted,” the statement continued. “This may include, but is not limited to, materials such as puff paint, stickers, pipe cleaners, macaroni, sequins, glitter, beads, tissue paper, popsicle sticks, cotton balls, and pom-poms.”

The Internet search giant also announced a panel of guest judges for the 2014 contest, which include, “Astronaut Ron Garan, RISD President Rosanne Somerson, Directors of The LEGO Movie Chris&Phil, LEGO Education Robotics Designer Lee Magpili, Authors Lemony Snicket and Mary Pope Osborne, Designer and Artist Christoph Niemann and App Developer and Model Lyndsey Scott.”