Frequently Asked Questions


Qucik clarification regaring print resolution:

A guideline is 2657 pixels wide and/or 3636 high, 300 DPI (portrait), or 3636 pixels wide and/or 2657 pixels high, 300 DPI (landscape). Your image aspect ratio and layout will dictate the final resolution. These are given as guidelines. To be safe, render images that are larger than these specified.

In essense, we are to render out (if using a 3d program) at 11072x15152 @ 72ppi. Then resize image in PS to 2657x3636 @ 300ppi.

Do you want final image to be converted to CMYK or remain as RGB?


Russel, can you confirm that you can render at the Challenege resolution (I think it’s 2657 x 3636)?




the deadline about the compete is ???


Hi, I just noticed that the deadline for the image entry is actually quite a bit earlier than what’s advertised on the contest banner. Is there any chance of getting the image deadline to be the same as the video deadline?

I realize that reading the books is not required for the challenge…and yet the contest is named after them and the author is a judge, so it seems like theres a significant encouragement there to draw from this material…and I’d like to. Work and Life being what they are, it might take me a couple weeks just to get through the first few books, before I’m intimately familiar enough with the material to make more deliberate sketch decisions. I mean, I know I’d still be at a disadvantage vs those people who aren’t making any effort to work within the promoted material, but I’m cool with that.

I don’t necessarily expect sympathy for any “more time” requests, even though the contest seems to promote reference material it might take some time to process. But if you’d like anything, you have to at least ask, so Im just getting that out of the way ;).


I’ve a idea in mind for this challenge but I may not participate because I may not have enough experience to pull this off but my questions are:

I just so happened to download the 30 day demo of XSI the day before the challenge was announced - do I have to download and install the XSI that is associated with this challenge or just acquire the new license.

Second - Is there an upgrade from the non-commercial to the commercial XSI?



Hi everybody, who is participating in this competition!

Q: Can I use images a main heroes, drawings of the technician from computer games, as sketchs for my 3D models?


Sorry if it’s written somewhere and I misread it, but here it goes:

I’m participating in the image category. If I make a turntable of one of my models to try the modeling open category, where should I upload it? In my own thread, in a video thread, using the CGUploader?

Thanks in advance


Just acquire a new license.


Just wanted to know if it’s ok to take Jim Burn’s illustrations and take on them as
concept art to produce a 3D image?

In other words do we have to be totally original from existing book covers or
can we do a 3D interpretation of them?
The reason why I’m not trying to go totally original is that I haven’t read the books
and small excerpts don’t seem to help that much in creating a detailed “picture” of
Brin’s universe.


how I can upload new images in my wip?



Go to:

Enter your CGS name and password. This will take you to an upload page where you browse your hard drive for the pic and enter info about your image.


Yes, rendering at 3636 x 2728 works fine here.


Just to be sure - I can use either portrait or landscape orientation, right?

I would like to use landscape, so I thought I’d ask.

Thanks in advance!



Hello , can you please tell me how to close my individual entry ? We want to form a team and we thought that to do that each one of us must submit a form from the Enter the challenge section. we did that , my team-mate sent me and invitation to join his team and if i wand to accept it says that i am already in a group , what should i do ?


only one question to this (above) … where can I post the credit?

thx. allan


Nope that doesn’t make sense, the resolution @72ppi would be lower than @300ppi!

Ballistic books are around 22x30cm / 8.66x12.12" which translates roughly to those 2657x3636px at 300ppi… Render higher if you can (for postprocessing/cropping/etc) but 11072x15152 would be insane for most computers :stuck_out_tongue:

Regarding CMYK conversion, this is taken from every Ballistic call for entries :

“3. Do not convert your image to CMYK and do not over-sharpen it for print. We will be applying CMYK conversions and other filters that are optimal for the print process we have chosen. It is probable that we will be employing the most recent direct to plate and stochastic screen processes for printing. You should concentrate on providing images that look excellent on screen and let us perform the optimal preparation for print.”


Yeah! Just as a sidenote, Ballistic doesn’t print images sideways (if you’re making a landscape orientation) except for: portrait images when they decide it’s great enough to use two pages; and for special edition prints :rolleyes:


Conceptual question. I normally wouldnt split hairs like this, but it’s especially pertinent if you’re trying to adapt the “Uplift” material.

Is “alien” defined as non-human life, or “extra-terrestrial” life? If you consider the source material you’re promoting, you can see the distinction here, and I dont want to be disqualified on a technicality.

Specifically, do neo-dolphins, neo-chimps, neo dogs, neo-gorillas, etc, count as “aliens”?


In terms of music, what is allowed? Do you have to have an original piece? Or can you use a previous piece of music, so long as you credit the composer? And ask permission of course… :wink:


How important is it to have a good story for your picture?
How great should it be?