Wow! Who ever could've expected that in just our second Theories Design Contest that we would receive well over 300 entries, a LOT of which were super strong and varied between collage, pencil & paper, digital designs and even a woodcut!
But then just as shocking, we ended up receiving over 850 votes between the TOA and Theories Brand Instagram accounts and the TOA website. And, believe it or not, we counted every...single....one! That's right! With a pen and scrap paper, every one of your votes was hand counted in a much more professional and fool-proof manner than the Iowa Democratic caucus.
And it was a really interesting process because even 2/3 of the way through counting the votes, the artists who were far in the lead didn't end up as the winner until we got further to the end. And it was rad to see that there was strong support for every entry, with 3 edging everyone out as the clear front runners.
So without further ado, let us present you with the results......
SECOND RUNNER UP: @james.keddie
This was one of the first entries we received and it held strong throughout the 2 week process as one of the clear front runners. James captured an amazingly eerie vibe with this collage piece that felt very "on-brand" for Theories. We loved this design and we were super stoked to see it make it to the top 3. Congratulations on making it to the top 3 out of over 330!
FIRST RUNNER UP: @coulson
Wow, wow, wow! The number 1 and number 2 spot changed dramatically throughout the counting process but this amazing approach at a Seinfeld nod was always within the top 3 and it was well ahead at times but eventually ended up about 40 votes shy of the winning design. This is definitely one of the Theories in-house favorites so there's a good chance you might see this on a future Theories shirt anyways. Coulson actually entered several amazing designs and we want to thank him for his amazing work and for putting so much time into the contest.
AND YOUR NUMBER 1 PICK IS: @_scholz
Theories has always been made up of a combination of humorous graphics balanced with a heavy dose of dark, esoteric imagery that conjures up an alternate reality in the viewers mind. The design contest was a very well balanced mixture of both, with a lot of artists pretty much beating us at our own game in some respects. Chris' design grabbed the dark and mysterious angle and ran hard with it, straight through a wrinkle in the space-time continuum and delivered a beautiful visual that captured the foundational Theories vibe perfectly.
Is it a reference to MK Ultra? Or to the CIA's secret remote viewing program? I don't know but this graphic leaves you wanting to dive in to find out the full story and leaves you with a lasting impression. We had picked out at least 12 designs that we would've been more than happy to see win and end up on a Theories shirt but Chris' design was definitely near the top of that list. So we are more than happy with the results of your votes and you can sit back now and wait to see this design in a new Theories collection coming soon. Chris, we'll be reaching out to you via Instagram to work out the details. Thanks so much for your entry.
And thank you ALL for your incredible participation and amazing work. After developing and creating Theories graphics for over a decade now we find it hard to believe that anyone can come up with something that we wouldn't expect, but a lot of you proved us wrong. Wow, what an amazing outpouring of great ideas and a lot of you created not one but several strong designs that we had a hard time choosing between. So there's a chance some of you will be hearing from us about one of your designs in the near future but for now, thank you so much for your enthusiasm and support and we'll be seeing you somewhere in the ether of cyber space soon.