I am a huge fan of Smashing Magazine, especially their monthly calendar desktop wallpapers. I like to pick through my favorites as they’re released each month and I routinely swap out backgrounds on my work and desktop machines, depending on the time of year, my projects, and my mood. Years ago I realized that they had an open policy for submissions – anyone can enter a desktop calendar so long as they meet a minimum of requirements. I was terribly intimidated but I always wanted to try to submit something, to see if I could have any success and to return the favor for all my years of inspiration.
In late May I decided enough was enough – I was going to submit something for June. I thought about what would be well-received and looked for inspirations in June holidays (many calendars are inspired by the special events in that month), but I was distracted by another post – one for their annual photo content. The contest asked for shots of items that people keep on their desks; items that we look to for inspiration or encouragement throughout their day. As it happened I have such an item – a little red wooden frog that my mother had growing, and which she had given me when I was a little girl. It’s very old, but it still works (it’s got a little spring in its mouth to hold papers) and it has always been there, watching me. On top of that I had just purchased a new desk for my home office, so I was excited to photograph it, and I decided to submit a shot to the photo contest.
Long story short – my photo made it! The contest takes several dozen shots for inclusion in a poster, but I was also named one of the top ten and was one of four who received a prize. Naturally I was pretty pleased, but I didn’t forget about the desktop wallpaper – I submitted a July wallpaper that profiled Canada Day (today) and it too was included! I’m somewhat less pleased with the Canada Day wallpaper and there is one other wallpaper design I have in mind… so stay tuned. For now I’m pleased that I finally completed a submission, and over the moon that my work was appreciated!