About the competition

What is the “Doodle 4 Google” competition?

Doodle 4 Google is a competition open to all students attending primary or secondary schools in the Republic of Ireland. We want them to create their own Google doodle. This year's theme for the doodles is "If I could create anything it would be...."

Why is Google doing this competition?

Doodles are meant to surprise and delight people when they visit the Google homepage. Who better to surprise and delight than talented and creative young artists! Google would not exist today if it weren’t for creativity, passion, and imagination so we love to celebrate and promote these values in our younger users.

Is this the first time you’ve done Doodle 4 Google?

We've been hosting the Doodle 4 Google competition every year in Ireland since 2008, so this is our 9th year. The contest is run in many other countries throughout the year as well.

Who was the 2016 winner?

The overall winner of Doodle 4 Google Ireland in 2016 was Mia Buckley, age 12, from Co. Cork.

Why did you choose the theme "If I could create anything it would be...."?

At Google, we believe the most ambitious ideas and untethered creativity of young people can help make the world a better place. Doodle 4 Google is about inspiring students to think, be creative and dream big. Our theme "If I could create anything it would be...." is about showcasing creativity and tapping into the remarkable imagination that children and teenagers have.

How can I submit a doodle?

Use the online submission form on the site, or send your entry by post.

Entry information

Who is allowed to submit artwork on behalf of the student?

We welcome submissions from primary and secondary school teachers, and Youthreach groups. We ask that the entry is accompanied by a completed official entry form signed by the student's parent or guardian.

Is there a limit to how many doodles a school or Youthreach group can submit?

There is a limit of six doodles per school or Youthreach group. And we only accept one original doodle per student.

What happens if two doodles are submitted from the same student?

We can only accept one doodle per student. Our judging platform will verify that each doodle submitted is in fact a unique entry. If we receive two entries from the same student, we will accept the doodle that was received first. Any other entries from the same student will be disqualified.

How do parents, teachers or after school program representatives get their children or students involved?

Visit our “Classroom Activities” tab for videos and activities to help your students or children get creative.

How long do I have to submit my student’s doodle?

The contest launches on October 4th, 2016. Doodle submission - signed by a parent or guardian - are due on November 26th, 2016.

Do I have to use plain white paper to print out the entry form and draw the doodle?

While white paper is best, you can utilize other light-colored papers. Papers with light patterns are ok too – just be sure your doodle is clear and the pattern doesn’t interfere. You can also use a thicker paper stock if you like, but it must be paper, not cardboard or foam board.

Can I just doodle on and submit a blank A4 sheet of paper?

Unfortunately, no. The doodle must be completed on the official entry form. We have moved to this method of submissions in order to increase legibility when we scan the doodle for judging purposes.

Can I tape my Doodle to the entry form?

Yes. If you draw the Doodle on another sheet of paper, you can tape it to the official entry form. Just be sure that the tape is clear, that the Doodle fits above the description and that the information on the bottom of the entry form is visible.

Is preregistration required?

Nope! All that is needed is a completed entry form signed by the child’s parent or guardian and the doodle.

I’d like to use Photoshop for my entry. Is that ok?

Yes, you can use Photoshop. Create your doodle in a new document 1894 pixels high by 2960 pixels wide at 300 dpi. When you are finished, simply open the official entry form in Photoshop to use it as the background layer for a new document and paste your digital doodle in as a second layer. If necessary, move and resize your doodle to fit inside the doodle box. Don’t change the size of the document from the original official form size, and you should be able to print it, and fill the few fields on that page by hand. Hand written entries will be accepted.

FOR TEACHERS: If you’d like to have your class participate using Photoshop, you can create a document with the background pasted in for your students to use as their canvas.

What materials are acceptable to be used on the doodle?

Eligible Doodles must be two-dimensional and scannable. This includes any artistic material that will remain flat on the page. This could include: paint, pencils, crayons, markers, chalk, pastels, charcoal, or cray-pas. Computer-generated images are also accepted. This means that any materials that may cause the image to be three-dimensional will not be accepted. This may include, but is not limited to, materials such as puff paint, stickers, pipe cleaners, macaroni, sequins, glitter, beads, tissue paper, popsicle sticks, cotton balls, and pom-poms.

When I print out the entry form, the Google logo is barely visible. Is that normal?

Yes, we did that on purpose so that you are free with your design. If you wish to show the letters more prominently in your design, feel free to track the letters' marks and make them more visible. If you wish to show less of the logo, draw your design on a blank piece of paper and tape it onto the official entry form. Just be sure that the Doodle fits in the space above the description and that the information on the bottom is clear and visible. You can see the different ways that our Doodlers use the Google logo in their Doodles on the Doodle Gallery.

Judging & Selection Process

How's the contest judged?

Students’ doodles are judged by a combination of Google employees and a panel of “Guest Judges”. Submissions are divided into five class groups: (1) Junior Infants, Senior Infants; (2) 1st, 2nd, 3rd Class; (3) 4th, 5th, 6th Class; (4) 1st, 2nd, 3rd Year; (5) Transition Year, 5th, 6th Year, Youthreach; for judging. The judges narrow the total submissions pool down to 75 finalists across class groups. We then invite the public to vote online for their favourites. The public vote helps determine the top doodle from each class group. Our official Google doodle team, made up of Google web designers, will select the winning doodle from the five class group winners.

What criteria will be used to select the winning doodle?

To narrow the entries down to the top winners, eligible doodles are judged by Google employees and our “Guest Judges” against the following criteria:

  • Artistic merit: based on grade group and artistic skill.
  • Creativity: based on the representation of the theme and use of the Google logo.
  • Theme Communication: How clearly the competition theme is expressed in both the artwork and the written statement.

Who are the guest judges?

Each year, we have a panel of Guest Judges to help us judge Doodle 4 Google and we will announce our 2017 judges very soon.

Is the public involved in the voting process?

Yes. The public will be invited to vote online from February 7th, 2017 to February 21st, 2017. They will be asked to select their favorite doodles, one from each class group.

What are the different class groups?

Primary School

  1. Junior Infants, Senior Infants
  2. 1st, 2nd, 3rd Class
  3. 4th, 5th, 6th Class

Secondary School

  1. 1st, 2nd, 3rd Year
  2. Transition Year, 5th, 6th Year, Youthreach.