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Dash of Inspiration: December Design Challenge

December 2, 2015


And the winners are …

Ron Magnes takes the BEST OF 2015 with this card:


With the 5 Honorable Mentions, listed in order, going to …

Ramelle Richardson
Julia Bryant
Stacia Gorge
Natalie Kinnear
Christi Madden


This is the LAST Challenge of 2015, so why not make it a CELEBRATION? The December Design Challenge will be like a Holiday Party for GCU artists with an Open House Theme where each and every artist is invited to attend and BYBC! Collectively we’ll see all the talent at GCU, including all our newer artists who we hope will join in and introduce themselves!


December Design Challenge

Theme: BEST of 2015 – BYBC (Bring Your BEST Card)


  • Card must be Approved for the Public Marketplace and done so within the year 2015.
  • Enter the card you are most proud of creating, the design which you feel is YOUR BEST WORK in 2015.
  • Previous challenge cards – whether they won or not – will be accepted should you wish to choose one of those cards as your Best of 2015.


Entry Deadline: Monday, December 28th, 2015


How to Enter: Post the PID (card number) and the URL public storefront link (Please DO NOT post a link to your Manage Cards area) as a post in the challenge blog. We’ll forward your entry to the jury.


Category: Any Category / Any Occasion / Any Card



  • Entry must meet GCU’s Submission Guidelines and be in the Public Marketplace as an approved card during 2015.
  • Only ONE card per artist.
  • Stock Card Creations entries will not be accepted.


BLIND Judging: Entries are submitted anonymously for judging by the GCU Challenge Jury which means that before and during the challenge, judges do not have any way of knowing what artist is behind each entry. This eliminates any and all concerns with ‘favoritism’. The jury will judge the entries on the following criteria:

  • They will look for that total WOW factor.
  • The level of creativity, technique, and overall marketability.


BEST of 2015:

  • The winning designer’s card and store will be featured on the GCU Public Blog with an ‘About and Interview’ with the artist – the blog which customers view and follow.
  • As well as featured on the GCU Public Facebook Page – over 22,000 followers, now THAT’S exposure!
  • The winning card will be Design of the Day following the announcement of the winners (within 48-hours).

    EXCEPTION: Horizontal (landscape) cards are often not displayed as DOD due to GCU Home Page space restrictions.

  • The winning card will be added to the Greeting Card Universe Design Challenge Winners Pinterest Board – currently GCU’s Pinterest Page followers: 1.2K!
  • The winning card, should the artist choose, may be referenced in a new series by the winning artist and he/she may Fast Track all cards in the new series (being sure to give the Challenge URL and winning card PID in your Notes to Reviewer for each card in this series).
  • Best of Winner and Honorable Mentions will be included in a marketing email to over 100,000 customers!
  • The winner will receive a BEST of 2015 digital Award which they can use in their own promotions, storefront, websites and blogs to brag about their card being chosen.
  • The Best of 2015 card will be Twitted to GCU’s followers which is over 1350 and growing.

FIVE Honorable Mentions:

  • Your submissions will be Design of the Day within the following two weeks of announcing the Best of 2015 winner (within 14-days).

    EXCEPTION: Horizontal (landscape) cards may not be DOD due to GCU Home Page space restrictions.

  • Honorable Mention cards will be added to the Greeting Card Universe Design Challenge Winners Pinterest Board.
  • Best of Winner and Honorable Mentions will be included in a marketing email to over 100,000 customers!
  • The Honorable Mentions will receive a BEST of 2015 Honorable Mention digital Award which they can use in their own promotions, storefront, websites and blogs to brag about their card being chosen.
  • The HM Best of 2015 cards will be Twitted to GCU’s followers which is over 1350 and growing.


The card I’m most proud of creating in 2015. Doreen Erhardt©2015


If you haven’t been entering the Dash of Inspiration Monthly Design Challenges due to time constraints prohibiting you time to create a new card, or maybe you’ve just been shy … now’s the time to join us! What could be easier than Bringing Your Best Card to this month’s challenge?

70 Comments leave one →
  1. Laurie Schneider permalink
    December 2, 2015 2:55 am

    What a fun theme! I will be entering as soon as I can decide which one I want to use, it’s going to be tough decision! 🙂 Doreen you have made me feel so welcome that you’re gonna be stuck with me now! 🙂 Good luck to all! Hugs, Laurie

    • December 2, 2015 3:23 am

      Oh, that’s wonderful news, Laurie! We look forward to seeing your entries each and every challenge!

  2. December 3, 2015 12:33 am

    I definitely want to enter the design challenge but do not know where exactly to post my design.

  3. Rachel Kogut-Hodges permalink
    December 3, 2015 4:04 pm

    Hi Doreen, my entry for the December challenge is PID 1357126. Thanks!

    • December 3, 2015 4:55 pm

      Hello, Rachel! Great to see more new faces to the monthly challenge! Your entry has been received, good luck!

  4. juliat2 permalink
    December 3, 2015 5:10 pm

    Doreen, Here’s one of my favorite cards from this year: PID 1352648

    Good luck to everyone!

  5. December 3, 2015 6:11 pm

    Hi Doreen, I think I will put in the Sleigh Bells Ring in a Winter Wonderland card.

    Thank you!

  6. December 3, 2015 6:14 pm

    Hi Doreen, my entry for the December challenge is PID 1398168

  7. December 3, 2015 6:20 pm

    Hi Doreen, here’s my entry … a sentimental favorite of mine this year: PID#1384812

    Thanks and good luck to all!

  8. December 3, 2015 7:51 pm

    Hello – I’d like to enter my favorite card this year – the one I’m sending out for my personal Christmas cards! PID # 1409088

  9. Laurie Schneider permalink
    December 3, 2015 10:02 pm

    Well, I finally decided, I knew I would be using a design I created with my boys because they are what I am most proud of but it was so hard deciding on which one! 🙂 So here it is pid# 1374560, I had such fun with this one! Good luck to all of you, wonderful entries so far! Take care, Laurie

    • December 4, 2015 12:07 am

      I’m sure it is hard to pick! Your entry has been received, Laurie, good luck to you and your ‘boys’!

      • Laurie Schneider permalink
        December 4, 2015 12:14 am

        Thank you! Hugs, Laurie

  10. December 4, 2015 9:26 am

    Hi Doreen,
    My favorite card is always the one I’m currently working on. 🙂
    Here is my entry, an illustration I made this year.

    Good luck to all, you’ve entered great designs!

    🙂 Barbara

    • December 4, 2015 9:27 pm

      Hi Judith! Really nice to see you join us, but you’ll need to choose a card from your store which is your best of 2015. According to the review team, this card was approved in November 2014. Try again? Please!

  11. Liz permalink
    December 4, 2015 11:47 pm

    Such a fun challenge and a hard choice, but since I use quite a bit of licensed artwork or my own photographs in my cards, I decided to enter one that I actually “drew” (it’s a stretch). But I like the way it turned out, and apparently, so did a few customers as it has actually sold a few times, much to my amazement!

  12. SunAtNight permalink
    December 7, 2015 2:07 am

    Inspired by the challenge of June, idioms. Entry pid# 1361820

    • December 7, 2015 3:35 am

      How nice to have you join us, Sun At Night! Always a thrill to see cards inspired by one of the challenges, good luck to you, your entry has been received.

  13. Canadian Winter Homeschool Materials permalink
    December 9, 2015 12:50 am

    Hello! I don’t have many cards to choose from yet, but I thought I might as well join in the fun with my ‘Color-your-own Medieval Heart’ card! PID 1410148

  14. 1ramelle permalink
    December 18, 2015 4:00 pm

    It’s such fun to see all the wonderful “bestest” of 2015 that have been submitted. We have some exceptionally talented artists at GCU! My favorite card that I’ve created this year is one of my Chinese New Year designs for 2016, the Year of the Monkey. So far, my best selling cards have been the ones in which I’ve used traditional colors of gold and red, yet for this card, I wanted something different. Today I sold 30 of these to someone in (of all places!) North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, so I took that as a sign that I should submit this:
    PID #1405848

  15. Ron permalink
    December 19, 2015 10:11 pm

    Hello Doreen,

    First, I’d like to wish you and yours a wonderful holiday season.

    Here’s my choice for Dec. challenge.
    Product Id: 1398042
    Submit Date: 09/01/15

  16. December 20, 2015 1:44 pm

    What a great turnout for the challenge this month! How fun to see everyone’s designs!
    I chose this design because I just love the colors and motion. Also because once again it is a creation celebrating a holiday I had no idea existed, so it embodies the fact that my journey here at GCU has opened so many doors that I never knew were even there to open!
    Happy Holidays to all and best of luck in the challenge!
    Submit date: Jan, 5, 2015.

  17. December 21, 2015 2:53 pm

    What great designs have been entered! Good luck everyone!
    I chose this design of mine because I had this thought in my mind for a long time for a card and only recently finished it. I enjoy using graphic images combined with strong words to share a thought with whoever will be receiving the card.

    Happy Holidays everyone!

  18. December 25, 2015 3:04 pm

    The idea for the card I’m entering was with me for a long time before I finally put it together the way I wanted it. The first version I created was PID# 1394176 (cat version), but I’m entering this one (dog version) because it’s the one requested by a customer: – and the way she used it was sooo cute (and creative)! While I envisioned the birthday girl or boy in the main photo, she used a picture of the birthday girl’s dog, using the main headline to say happy birthday from the pup. I really enjoyed creating this card, and I love my customer’s take on it.

    • December 25, 2015 4:20 pm

      Great to have you enter, Christi. Your entry has been received, good luck!

      • December 27, 2015 10:20 pm

        Thanks, Doreen. I’m amazed you checked the blog on Christmas! Hope it was a merry one.

      • December 27, 2015 10:41 pm

        LOL! It wasn’t that I checked the blog, but I did have a few minutes of quiet time to check my email and I get notified when a new post is made. Didn’t want to forget that it came in, so I just took care of it 🙂 It was a lovely Christmas, once PGE got the power back on Christmas Eve. We lost power due to someone driving like an idiot in the snow and they took out a power pole. So we lost power at 9:30 a.m. Christmas Eve and didn’t get it back until 4:00 p.m. – that was not fun, but … the rest of the day and those following sure were 🙂

  19. December 28, 2015 3:31 am

    Hi, I wish I had had more time to do the challenges throughout the year, so hopefully get this one in on time. PID 1406440

  20. December 28, 2015 4:25 pm

    Hope you all had a very merry Christmas! Here is my entry for the December challenge. PID 1401754

    • December 28, 2015 5:52 pm

      Hello, Robert! We’d love to have you join us, however we’re sorry to say that the card you wish to enter was approved in 2014, not 2015, therefore it is not eligible. We hope you’ll choose a card from 2015 to enter!

  21. December 29, 2015 3:40 am

    On behalf of STACIA – I did not receive any notification of a new comment, checked pending moderation and it’s empty, so ??? Here is your forum post:

    I tried to post my entry for the December contest on the GCU Community Blog, but my posting (the comment and the link) didn’t appear. Is it not showing because Doreen needs to moderate it first before it will show? undecided. I’m trying to submit PID 1400588. Thanks!

  22. Stacia permalink
    December 30, 2015 7:28 pm

    This is a test. Taking off my link to GCU store and removing ad blocker to see if that makes a difference in the ability of message to get through.

    • Stacia permalink
      December 30, 2015 7:29 pm

      Well, that worked, will now but the ad blocker back on and see what happens.

      • December 30, 2015 7:32 pm

        And that also worked, now I will put a new link to GCU store and see if that works

  23. December 30, 2015 7:38 pm

    Ta-da! I think I’ve got it solved! I’ll keep my fingers crossed. (BTW, I was referring to my link to my own GCU store, not the main site.)

  24. January 6, 2016 11:44 pm

    Congratulations to Ron for a spectacular win! Very well deserved. To all the runners up, congratulations for wonderful designs being recognized!

  25. January 6, 2016 11:53 pm

    Congratulations everyone. Ron – your work is wonderfully graphic and expressive. Great job!

    Che Bella Nota

  26. 1ramelle permalink
    January 7, 2016 1:24 am

    The moment I saw Ron’s entry, with his hilarious take on the iconic “Swiss Army Knife,” I knew his card would be the winner. It gave me a good chuckle and I know that this card will bring Ron some nice sales. Congratulations, Ron, on winning December’s Design Challenge.

  27. January 7, 2016 2:09 am

    Congratulations to ALL of you; what a great selection of cards!

  28. Laurie Schneider permalink
    January 7, 2016 2:11 am

    Congratulations to all of you! Fantastic cards! Take care, Laurie

  29. Rycky Creations permalink
    January 7, 2016 3:11 am

    Congratulations on your win, Ron! Congrats as well to all the honorable mentions. Great job everyone 🙂

  30. January 7, 2016 4:30 pm

    Congratulations everybody, Kudos to all! Great cards!

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