Last year we changed the format of the Writers of the Future anthology from a paperback to the larger trade paperback size. With this change, we now can feature the award-winning art in color.
That the winners of the Illustrators of the Future Contest are extremely talented is not a surprise considering the A-list of artists who make up the panel of judges that select the winners. One of these judges is Cliff Nielsen (pictured above), who is a very successful and prolific artist in his own right.
By way of background, Cliff has achieved renown for work on properties involving The Chronicles of Narnia, X-Files, and Star Wars, plus projects with Marvel, and many more. With a book and magazine cover career spanning from 1994 to the present, Cliff now has nearly 500 pieces to his name, not to mention work crossing over into advertising, design, and other media.
Passionate about art ever since he was a child, Cliff pursued his love through to college, where he attended and earned a Bachelor’s degree, graduating as a valedictorian from the Art Center College of Design (where he also currently teaches). He then set out to NYC where he literally sprained both ankles taking his portfolio around to various publishing houses, refusing to give up until art directors started to give him opportunities to demonstrate his talent.
And demonstrate he did. His career flourished and his work has since been noted for its unique style and excellence by the Society of Illustrators, Print, and Spectrum, among many others. Soon, he stood in the spotlight of design and art magazines while fans raved about his unique style.
Never limiting where his art appears, Cliff claims a particular fondness for digital creation, and has even taken on the role of international speaking to address digital art. Aside from his place with Writers of the Future, he also acts as a judge for the Society of Illustrators and various other pro-level art and illustration award programs.
You may well recognize his work without realizing it. For instance, Nielsen has illustrated cards for the Magic: The Gathering collectible card game, cover art for The Mortal Instruments books, The Infernal Devices, and The Cirque Du Freak series, just to name a few.
In addition to taking the time to judge for the Illustrators of the Future Contest, he is also one of the guest speakers at the Illustrators Workshop held here in Los Angeles every year just for the winning artist.
Cliff’s viewpoint on the Contest is this: “Through this competition, L. Ron Hubbard’s great legacy of supporting young creative talents is without equal in the world today.”
We’d like to thank Cliff all the work he does to help aspiring new artists get a boost in their career through the Illustrators of the Future Contest.