2020 National Veterans Day Poster Contest


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Calling all artists! The 2020 National Veterans Day Poster Contest is underway. Each year the Veterans Day National Committee publishes a commemorative Veterans Day poster. The Committee selects a poster from artwork submitted by artists nationwide. It also distributes the winning design to VA facilities, military installations around the world, and across cities and towns in our nation. It then serves as the cover of the official program for the Veterans Day Observance at Arlington National Cemetery.

Over the years these posters have illustrated the rich history of our country’s service men and women. The poster reflects our pride and patriotism in saluting Veterans while providing the thematic artistry for the year.

The theme for Veterans Day 2020 is: “Vision: Veterans in Focus.” All Veterans make a sacrifice to serve their country, whether physically, emotionally, or by being away from their loved ones and missing important life moments. As the saying goes, hindsight is always 20/20. Looking back on centuries of Veterans’ service and sacrifice and what we have learned from the past, we must always maintain the vision for the future of Veterans. Putting the Veteran at the center, on Veterans Day we continue to honor all who served, while focusing on the needs of the next generation of Veterans.

Submission Guidelines

  • Be 18” x 24” at 300 dots per inch, scale down submissions to 9”x12.”
  • The design will be used for a 1” x 1.5” lapel pin. Simple designs look best scaled down to lapel pins. If you’d like to submit a modified design for the lapel pin based off the original poster design, you may do so.
  • Submissions are not restricted to “human centric” presentations, such as a joint color guard. Imagery of American icons, monuments or scenery can qualify, for example, the American flag.
  • Representative of all Veterans who served. The Committee may select a particular submission but ask the artist to make modifications to the original design. The Committee may require additional changes prior to printing.
  • Design must include the words :Veterans Day, November 11, 2020” and “Honoring all who served.”
  • Include sufficient information to demonstrate that the image is the work of the artist and is not copyrighted material (i.e. photos and concepts).
  • Successful designs are very simple with minimal imagery and verbiage. To view examples of past winning submissions visit: http://www.va.gov/opa/vetsday/gallery.asp.

Submit electronic versions as jpg images or PDF files by email to vetsday@va.gov  or send copies of artwork on a CD with artwork files to:

Veterans Day National Committee (002D)

Department of Veterans Affairs

810 Vermont Avenue, NW

Washington, D.C. 20420

Deadline

The deadline for submissions is April 1, 2020. The Veterans Day National Committee will convene a selection sub-committee in May 2020 to review submissions and make a final selection.

Questions? – contact the Veterans Day Coordinator at vetsday@va.gov.

Author

Melissa Heintz

Melissa Heintz joined the Department of Veterans Affairs in 2015 and currently works as the National Veterans Day Coordinator, National Veterans Outreach. She grew up on an Army base in Japan before her family relocated to Hawaii. She holds a degree in Journalism/Mass Communications and Spanish from Seattle University. Melissa has served as a public affairs specialist with Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam and the Institute of Museum and Library Services. In December 2015, Melissa commissioned in the Air National Guard where she serves as a public affairs officer with the 113th Wing, D.C. Air National Guard.

Comments

  1. Teresa    

    I would like to offer my thoughts as the 2019 Veteran’s Day poster winner.
    I submitted my fathers Pearl Harbor journal, his discharge papers and one of my brother’s dog tags ( three brothers served). I don’t consider myself an artist. I was looking to honor my father’s service- some of which is documented in the (secret) journal pictured in my poster. My father enlisted in the Army when he was 18 years old and again, in the Navy, when Pearl Harbor broke out. He was married with two small children. He left behind a letter explaining to his eldest son why he made the decision to serve his country during this war- just in case he didn’t make it back to his little family.
    He was an ordinary man (like so many others) doing something quite extraordinary- not in his eyes- in mine.I held on to that journal all these years wondering how I would share it. Finally I decided the best way to do so was through this contest, after all, who better to share it with!
    I don’t think about money or prizes, I find joy in the positive reception my poster received locally as well as nationally. I am honored to be chosen and I’m sure my Dad is honored as well. I hope the Veterans who serve now and who have served many years ago understand I want to honor them as well.
    I understand my poster maybe not be a work of art, but I encourage anyone with something to convey to our brave Veterans to enter. It was my great honor to do so. Thank you

  2. Mkflood    

    Isn’t funny that they always call for artist and all they want to offer is a attaboy. Yes I’m proud of being a veteran. I’m just tired of giving hard work away for free. Then you get a kiss and promise that you will get recognized. What if your already recognized. Attaboy won’t even buy a cup of coffee. My oldest kid asked me years ago..”daddy you trying to get famous?..I replied “no darling..daddy is just trying to get paid..good luck to those who wants to do it for free.

  3. Phil W    

    Fellow Veterans and Friends,
    It is noteworthy that the VA is doing this for veterans and artists. Recognition by VA is appropriate. The VA as a government agency should not spend money on prizes for such events. They administer the program, hopefully with volunteer assistance. On the other hand, with a little effort by the VA they could surely obtain substantial sponsorship for prizes from the Major Service Organizations and other Veteran interest groups. In fact, prizes and judging could be accomplished on a regional and even state and local level if high participation and education is to be achieved. Other government agencies do this well and VA does not need to reinvent the wheel. It would be interesting to know who selects the subcommittee for judging and what criteria is used for judging the art. Honoring all veterans at every opportunity is always a good thing – material prize notwithstanding.
    — Old Soldier 82nd Airborne Div.

  4. Will Potter    

    Expecting to see at least one poster with dog symbols (K9 etc)

    1. Will Potter    

      And supporting VA all the way

  5. Heath Christopher    

    I’m not sure why people are asking for pay or prizes. I’m an artist and a veteran, and personally, I’d love to get my work chosen, for free, it would be an honor solely on an artist’s level. Though looking at the 3 representing pics they chose, the 2016 and 2013 are using the SAME eagle hahaha! Those were obviously just images jacked from the internet. So I’m not expecting to get chosen because originality isn’t of obvious concern. Looking at the full gallery, the older ones are definitely the best. Photography is great, but most of these I can guarantee aren’t photos the designer took themselves, they’re copy/paste images, which is all-and-well for reference material, but many of these just look like people took a bunch of images off the net and put them together in MS Paint, hahaha! The 2000s and up really look like the care and quality took a major downhill. My degree is in Illustration, but I’ll probably try to make a couple of paintings and see what happens, haha. But I’ll let my other artist friends know on FB and see if we can’t get some good submissions.

  6. Kathy Bower    

    Look I am very sorry that vets are killing themselves. It’s nothing new by the way — that’s a stat that should have been tracked for 200 years. I’m a very old vet – and could regale you with plenty of sad stories. I’m pro eagle and so — people–check yourselves— just chill. It’s a contest. It’s an opportunity to have your creation published all across America. It’s difficult to place into a 1″ sq lapel pin all the symbolism of suicide of vets, homeless vets, etc. So give this opportunity a chance to be what it is – a way for artists to share a talent. If an artist uses the image of an eagle – stop yanking the ground from beneath him/her. Eagles are beautiful and symbolic. And their images shrink to a 1″ sq format well. This is not a venue to politicize or criticize. It’s a chance to express pride and talent. Sometimes it’s important to celebrate all the greatness of the meaning of the title “veteran”. Lighten up.

  7. Ben Hargrove    

    Where is the lie hough? These posters are truly embarrassing and asking for free graphic design work from underpaid artists is an insult to both the veterans who are ostensibly being honored and the artists being delegated to honor them by paid VA bureaucrats. The VA’s 2021 budget is a quarter of a trillion dollars and they can’t find a few hundred bucks to create a poster for the administration’s most revered holiday? If weren’t so absolutely bored by the certainty of grossly offensive conduct from the VA, I could imagine being pretty upset.

  8. Lori Hebrank    

    How is the winning poster presented and where? Is the artist invited for the unveiling or does the artist work hard on the project and get forgotten for their contributions?

  9. Ronald Michael Wickersham    

    As every veteran will tell you: “We hate to wait in line!” When posting information about this poster contest why not also include the information about monetary and prize awards, if any. How about a link to “prizes and awards”.

  10. John Nickens    

    Where can I get a Veterans Day poster for myself ?

  11. H L Rainey III    

    Apparently the bald eagle is important in celebrating us veterans. In two of the three posters reproduced for us here, the National Symbol virtually obliterates any reference to veterans as human beings. In the third poster we are left to wonder why our National Symbol’s head is bowed, above a squad of infantry crossing a barbed wire parapet without contact. This is our first visual cue, from the three posters exhibited, veterans may not be birds after all. No wonder this years contest addresses the topic Veterans In Focus. Seems self evident they’ve been out of focus, if in the frame at all. Let us introduce ourselves America, we’re your vets. Neighbor down the street, high school girlfriend sort of thing. We joined, we served, we sacrificed, and, when very lucky, we came home. We live among you. In fact, may I share one of our many statistics. Approximately every hour of every day, day after day, after day, a broken veteran commits suicide. Classic symbols of nationalism seem grossly unhinged in face of this tortured reality. Perhaps a wiser military servant can educate me on the presence of vaunted courage, valor, and honoring all who serve in another wasted year pretending against this disgrace. Our brothers and sisters are killing themselves in piles. Way too many others live in cardboard boxes. There are populations of our mentally ill existing so far on the fringes civilians don’t even see us anymore. Please, hold the gd eagle.

  12. Maxine Weimer    

    any rewards for entering

    1. Pam DeVine    

      Why is the only thing you’re interested in is whether or not you’ll be payed ?? I guess the honor of paying tribute to the veteran community is not good enough….. If you MUST have money, the census bureau is begging people to take a job. Good pay…

      Pam DeVine CPO USN (ret)

      1. Mike Haak CPO USN (ret)    

        CPO Devine –
        What we see here on the blog is the typical negative accusatory response that we find to nearly everything that pops up on the Internet (except cute cat videos, I guess!). What I see in this contest is a great way for Americans (like art students at my high school) to be involved in honoring other Americans. I suspect many others would agree with my and your sentiments. They just aren’t the ones that come online to hide behind the relative anonymity of online venting. How can one gripe about the bald eagle being frequently used? How can the facts that suicide among veterans is at unacceptable levels even come into THIS conversation? “These posters are truly embarrassing,” writes one post..say, what????

  13. Maxine Weimer    

    Is their any wards for winning or paymentment to enter ???

  14. Maxine Weimer    

    this is a wonderful idea. Just for information is their any reward or or what are the prizes for winning thank=you

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