The past few years on Guild Wars Guru, those of us that frequent the Nolani Academy subforum have participated in a community-held art workshop for both the Halloween and Wintersday art contests. The purpose of the workshop is not necessarily to try and win a prize in the official contest, though workshop participants are always well-represented amongst the winners; last year for the Halloween contest something like 9 of the 23 winners were workshop participants. Rather, the main point is to create a piece of art that the artist is happy with, to obtain critique, and to try and learn something new and expand on your artistic skills.
And, obviously, the art is all both Guild Wars and Halloween-related, which lends to some awesome creativity in what people come up with!
I participated in both workshops and art contests in 2010 (and was one of the contest winners for Wintersday), so I can attest to how much fun it can be to participate, and how incredibly helpful the critique that’s given out can be. It’s really a great time, with people of all skill levels participating (and winning prizes). We usually hold a party in-game afterwards where we all just hang out in an outpost, give out prizes, mess around, and have fun.
This year I’m stepping up my participation; I will be hosting this year’s Halloween Workshop on Guru. The workshop itself isn’t open yet, but the thread is up, I’ve set aside a bunch of my goodies for prizes (I just need to divvy up what I’ve got between the categories), and I’m looking for judges and prize donations. And even though entries aren’t being accepted yet, discussion and brainstorming in the thread is more than welcome! If you’re interested in participating, want to help judge, have stuff you’d like to donate for prizes…just post in the thread or shoot me a message on Guru.
And of course the most important part – have fun!