Students can submit their artwork to the State Botanical Garden as a part of an art competition in which their entry has the possibility of being displayed at the botanical garden and converted into gift shop items if they win.
The competition, now in its third year, began when Tom Woodruff, co-trustee of The J.A. and H.G. Woodruff Jr. Charitable Trust, approached the botanical garden with the idea of funding the competition for UGA students.
Since that first competition, the winning works of art of several of the students have been converted into coffee mugs, playing card decks, mouse pads and t-shirts, to name a few items.
Beyond the acclaim of having their artwork on gift shop items, students also can win $500 for first prize, $300 for second place and $200 for third.
“We’re hoping any student feeling creative will submit a photograph or other work of art,” said Connie Cottingham, special events coordinator for the botanical garden.
The botanical garden typically has good turnout in submissions, she said. Last year there were about 30 entries for the competition.
The competition is open to all UGA students, and all majors are encouraged to submit their works as well.
In the past, art, graphic design, landscape architecture, wildlife and conservation education and ecology majors have all produced winning artwork.
The items are popular, and the gift shop has sold out of one of the mugs that had the reprinted artwork on it.
“It is so nice to have something unique as an object to buy,” Cottingham said.
According to the botanical garden gift shop manager, Julie Villella, the student artwork adds a twist to the usual logo items.
“We really enjoy seeing the artwork turn into something 3-D,” Cottingham said.
The deadline for this year’s competition is March 27 at 4:30 p.m., and entries can be delivered to the botanical garden, located at 2450 S. Milledge Ave.
More information and entry forms can be found online (www.uga.edu/botgarden).