Federal Stamp Contest

Artists can submit their artwork beginning in June. All artwork must usually be submitted by mid-August, for the contest which takes place in autumn.

 What Makes Good Stamp Design?

  • Is the composition strong with sufficient color contrast to emphasize detail and shading?
  • Do elements such as shape and line appear strong enough that they do not blur together?
  • Does the central design stand out from the background?
  • Is it eye-catching?
  • Is there enough space for the final stamp lettering and numerals without overlapping the central featured design elements?
  • Is the background simple enough to facilitate these additional elements?
  • Is the design simple, avoiding designs that will not reduce well or in which important details will be lost?
  • Is the design original, avoiding designs that are duplicates of previous Stamps?

Each year, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service chooses five waterfowl species, any one which may be painted.  For 2015, the eligible species are: 

  • Mallard
  • Gadwall
  • Blue-winged Teal
  • Cinnamon Teal
  • Trumpeter Swan

Read the complete rules for the 2015 contest.