How to Win the Beauty Contest
Making a Winning Image!
Making a good image is very important- unless you’re very well known, you won't
get many votes for a copy-and-paste entry. The style you choose, whether you
draw by mouse or hand, and how many heads you give it should be whatever works
best for you but there are some general points which might help you get more
1) Make the image a square. Even if it means chopping a little bit off or adding
some extra background. A lot of voters will first see your image in a long line
of square thumbnails. If yours is a distorted rectangle it won’t look as nice
and they’ll be less likely to click on it.
2) Keep the image strong. Bright colours make it more attractive whereas feeble
faded lines will make a good sketch almost invisible. If your scanner is old
and creaky like mine it’s a good idea to press harder with pencils, pencil crayons
and pastels and to outline it afterwards in black marker even if you wouldn’t
3) Change the pose. If you carefully copy a Neopet in its exact original pose,
no matter how much effort you put into it, some people are going to think it’s
a trace and not vote. If you really feel you can’t change the pose by yourself,
look at the “How to Draw” section and poses on trading cards to give you inspiration.
4) Preview your work on the board. Sometimes purely by bad luck you might discover
you’ve drawn something that resembles a cartoon character in a program you’ve
never seen. The entry above turned out to be a very embarrassing example of
this! ;) When you preview use a paint program to write your username in big
letters over it so nobody can steal your picture.
5) Do something original that you can talk about. “Vote for my Cybunny” is
unlikely to lure the hordes to your board, but as (whoever) discovered “Vote
for my handmade plushie Zafara” can keep the same board up for hours!
6) There are several ways to reach the 17K file size limit. You can reduce
the physical size of the image or some programs let you reduce the quality to
save on file size. Unless your image is animated, some programs will let you
save the file smaller as a jpg instead of a gif. If your image is a sketch,
switching the image more to greyscale will make it smaller. If all else fails
put the proper version onto your petpage.
People don’t like advertising and I can’t imagine why! It’s my favourite part
of the Beauty Contest. You have interesting conversations with other artists,
get to spout complete nonsense to advertise without spamming and make new friends.
Some people get angry when they’re against a famous entry and assume that all
these entries are bad. This often isn’t fair as a lot of them are beautiful
entries which deserve to win! Here are some ways you might not have thought
of for promoting your entry.
1) Put a link to your entry in your signature so it’s always there whenever
you post. Copy the link exactly including the http part or it might be blocked.
Toward the end of the week, when not many people on the BC board have votes
left, go to Help Chat, Avatars or Quests and offer to help people. Do NOT ask
them for votes or try to exchange your help for votes as this is unfair and
against the rules, but if you’ve helped them and they see the link in your signature
they might well take the time to vote without being asked.
2) Put your picture with a link to your entry anywhere you can - on your petpage,
pet lookup, main lookup, and shop. All of these are within the rules. Getting
someone else to display your link or putting the link in your trades wishlist
is not. Neopets HTML help page will tell you how to do this.
3) Having a pack rat sale? Got a lot of spare Tombola prizes? Save them for
when you are in the Beauty Contest, as the more people who visit your shop,
the more people will see the link in it.
4) Use the Notice Board. Lots of people look at the lowest entry. Have a look
at what the lowest entry costs (usually around 2000np) and buy an advert that
costs one Neopoint more. Then, depending on how many Neopoints you want to spend
on this, post up to three adverts above and three adverts below this price.
Space out the price of the adverts so that they are 100np apart. Although you
probably won't be able to see any of them straight away, adverts are made and
run out of time on the notice board constantly, and with an even spread one
of your adverts is likely to be visible for a reasonable amount of time each
day. Remember a clickable link for lazy people like me who often won't try to
find an entry for ourselves.
5) Don’t bump the same board twenty-odd times. Firstly you risk a telling off
for spamming and secondly if nobody is coming to your board that usually means
your title is boring. Leave the board until it reaches the bottom and then post
another one with a catchier title.
6) Free votes boards are invariably popular and often pointless for the poster
if the aim is to get more votes. Most people will not bother to look at/vote
for your entry and if you post one be careful you don’t make it sound like you’ll
only vote if people vote for you. People will post their link on these boards
and go back to advertising their own entry. A better option is to do a rating
board where you say how good a picture is and give advice on technique. Be honest
but polite, keep construction positive and avoid number ratings as somebody
will always get upset. That way they come back to see their rating and will
often vote for yours since you took the time to look at theirs.
7) Don’t vote count. It’s a waste of time and totally inaccurate. Some of the
people (not most but a lot) who say they’ve voted for you do so in order to
get your vote. Sometimes you can spot them saying they voted twice for the same
species of neopet. Most of the people who vote for you won’t tell you they voted
because it’s just too much like hard work.
8) Try to avoid spending as much as a solid hour advertising. It’s better to
spread it out if you can- advertise for five minutes before you go out, post
quickly during your break or while the adverts are on telly. Much more effective,
much less boring and it gives you time for more interesting things like Splat
9) If you’ve entered the Neopian Times, Poetry Contest, a Spotlight or anything
like that, have an entry in the Beauty Contest even if you don’t plan on advertising
that week. If you do happen to win, it’d be a shame to waste all that free publicity,
wouldn’t it? ;)
10) Lastly a little nag on what not to do. Don’t advertise directly on the
wrong boards, Neomail strangers or get irritated if someone doesn’t vote for
you. It only winds people up and they might decide to report you.
1) Entries get rejected to all sorts of reasons- it doesn’t mean your art is
bad! Sometimes the image doesn’t show up on Neopets servers, so try resaving
it and entering again. The main reason for rejecting a copy and pasted image
is that it hasn’t been altered enough. The big reason for rejecting other entries
is that they don’t look enough like the Neopet. Occasionally an image is rejected
because the theme is too adult- use your common sense here. If you’ve copied
an image from a cartoon, or based it so heavily on one that it can’t be mistaken
for anything else, chances are it will be recognised and not allowed through.
Don’t try this- the worst thing for you is actually if it *does* get through
as if a player reports it you might lose your whole account.
2) Everyone loses from time to time. It’s not nice when a brilliant piece of
art that you spend ages advertising loses to a scribble, but don’t give up!
Re-enter it and win the next time (but better not to enter it the same week
if it is someone famous as they can enter twice before being banned.)
3) What do I mean banned? Every time your pet wins first in species or first
overall it is banned for several months. This is to stop the most famous pets
dominating the contest week after week. If you’ve already entered the next week
they won't ban your entry because nobody known who wins until the new contest
starts. After that the only way to get off the ban is to change your pet's species.
4) If your pet changes colour, gender or stats it has no effect on your entry.
However if the pet changes species you keep the votes you already had and nobody
else can vote for you. There is no way to tell how many votes you have until
the contest is over.
5) You can include Petpets in your entry even if your pet doesn’t own the Petpet
you’re drawing. You can usually include two pets in your entry if they are the
same species- if you want two different species it’s best to make the actual
entry pet the main focus with the other one in the background.
6) Ready to enter? Click here: http://www.neopets.com/beauty/index.phtml and