March 2009

Lisa Kind - Editor

From the Editor | Lisa Kind


Your Chance to Win 2009 Cover Contest

Showing off to your friends and family is one thing; but winning a contest that shows you are a step above others in your own field may be the pinnacle of your career.

Then having this event publicized on the cover of a trade newspaper for the beauty industry so all your peers will see that you are the winner, wouldn’t that be a career goal worth reaching?

2008 Cover Contest Winner
2008 cover contest winning entry by Jeffrey Dufault and Vadre Grigsby of El Dorado Hills

Everyone has an equal opportunity to reach this career goal. Here’s your chance – California Stylist Newspaper may be looking just for you!

Giving everyone an equal chance is just what this annual Cover Contest is all about. This contest is not judged by your beauty school teacher, or your beauty supply rep or some manufacturer trying to make sure you’re using their product.

No, this contest is judged by newspaper people: the editors, writers, staff and graphic artists at Holland Graphics Inc., the people that produce all the Stylist & Salon Newspapers, based in Portland, Oregon.

We’re publishers, not hairdressers. We are experts on publishing, not hairdressing; we leave that up to you. Therefore the photo entries are judged on what prints well… what looks good on the cover of our newspaper. We will judge the photo on its composition, balance, quality and overall suitability for publication on the cover of the Stylist. This we know something about.

We want something that has that pizzazz factor, the one that jumps off newsprint, the one that helps our newspaper win all those awards. So you can’t go for just the haircutting technique alone (although that’s a given, it’s gotta be good) but you have to think about how it’s going to look in print (newsprint).

You have to think about color, not just the color of the hair, or of the nails (yes, that’s right, this contest is open to all that makes up the beauty business) or even the color of the make-up, but you have to think about the essence of the color of the shot; the mood it sets and how that color feels; or how it’s going to blend; or how it’s going to sway moodily into the sunset if that’s what you’re going for.

Maybe you were going for the color of melting light buttering limestone walls and waves of fluid shadows oiling the corners. Great for a poster in your salon, but is it right for a great California Stylist cover?

You have to decide, and then enter it in the 2009 Stylist Cover Contest. Deadline is May 1, 2009. You may enter as many times as you like but you must have a separate entry form with each entry. Go to to view previous winners and print out additional entry forms. There’s no entry fee.

Here are some tips to help you compete:

When you look at this newspaper you’re reading now, look at the cover. Do you notice that we print our banner over the photo? So it is a good idea to plan your photo to accommodate for that space, plus leave room for the mailing label. Vertical images work best. The size of our cover is 10 inches wide and 11 inches tall. Your photo doesn’t have to be that size but keep in mind that proportion.

Please send high resolution digital images only on CD, and please include a print-out of the file. Send your digital image as a .JPG or .TIF image. Fill out the entry form completely and legibly making sure to attach it securely to each picture. Also, its best not to send images that are smaller than 8 inches x 10 inches.

If all you send is a color copy it will go directly in the round file. They don’t reproduce well enough to be considered. So you see, the easier you make it for us to judge, the better your chances are.

We look at the whole setting while judging the photo so pay attention to the background as well as what your model is wearing. Do we choose winners when the model is wearing a fashionable style? Maybe. When she’s in a styling cape? Not so much. Another faux pas is posing your model up against a wall casting heavy shadows; being at least three feet away will avoid that error. Include a model’s release with your entry. A sample release is available at

Professional photo shoots are nice but getting a group together (model, photographer, stylist, nail tech, make-up artist, etc.) and having a creative, fun time doing one can produce some great, original shots. Entries don’t have to be created by one person; include the whole salon if you’d like. It’s a great way to build camaraderie and push your talent to the limit. Be sure to include everyone’s name then on the entry form. Whatever you do, don’t get too serious. This is fun for us to judge; we hope it will be fun for you also.

For information go to the cover contest page or call 1-888-297-7010.

Good luck everyone!
-Lisa Kind, Editor