Art Submission Guideline

Basic Instructions

Create your illustration by selecting a Pokémon from the preselected list and follow instructions according to the Submission Requirements.
We suggest you consider choosing a scenario and a composition that makes it easy to understand how the Pokémon looks—its color and shape, where it is, and what it is doing.

  • Choosing & Posing Your Pokémon

    As long as you follow the Submission Requirements and select your Pokémon of choice from the preselected list, there are no restrictions on how you may pose your Pokémon.

  • Attack & Abilities effects

    You may choose whether or not to include effects in your illustration, as long as you follow the Submission Requirements and select your Pokémon of choice from the preselected list.

  • Background

    There are no restrictions on location, weather, time of day, etc. for your illustration, as long as you follow the Submission Requirements and select your Pokémon of choice from the preselected list.

  • Make Your Pokémon the Star!

    The Pokémon you illustrate should be the main subject of your illustration, drawn in an enticing way.
    Make sure that the defining characteristics of that Pokémon are easy to see in order to make it recognizable.

    Do not draw Pokémon Trainers.

    For Pokémon gender and/or color, please refer to the Pokémon reference materials.

  • Stay in the Pokémon World

    When drawing, remember what the world looks like where Pokémon live. Avoid adding elements that don’t exist in the Pokémon world or that would otherwise look out of place.

    Do not include readable texts that use letters or numbers from any real language, recognizable buildings, or other elements that could make the illustration look like it is depicting the real world.

  • Make Your Illustration Original

    When choosing the drawing style, composition, coloring, and so on, try to express your originality as much as possible.

    Do not copy or trace illustrations from existing products, official images published online, etc., or original works by other artists.

Regarding submissions to the contest

As shown in the images above, works in which the illustration covers the entire face of the card, such as in the rarities SIR (special illustration rare), UR (ultra rare), and IR (illustration rare), are ineligible for selection. Please make your submission after thoroughly checking both the Standard Card Illustration Guidelines and the ex Card Illustration Guidelines .

Standard Card Illustration Guidelines


Portray the Pokémon you chose based on how it looks and behaves. Choose a scenario that would be appropriate for that Pokémon’s characteristics.

As a general rule, you should only draw one type of Pokémon per illustration. However, as long as the main Pokémon is clear, your composition may include several of that same Pokémon or a different Pokémon that coexists in the same space.

Please note that the illustration will be judged based on how the main Pokémon is portrayed.

Make sure to follow the art specifications below.

Data size and specifications

Width: 1106 pixels
Height: 696 pixels
Color mode: RGB
File format: JPEG or PNG
Size: within 3MB

ex Card Illustration Guidelines

Drawing Method

You can submit either a 2D or 3D illustration. Make sure to follow the art specifications below.


Portray the Pokémon in a battle scene. Choose a scenario that would be appropriate for that Pokémon’s characteristics.

Extending out of the Card Frame

Think of how you can make your Pokémon and the effects come out of the card frame while keeping in mind the “out-of-frame area for Pokémon” and “out-of-frame area for effects.”

The out-of-frame area for Pokémon is the magenta area shown in the picture.
The out-of-frame area for effects is the light blue area shown in the picture.

Make sure the Pokémon does not cover the card text.

Regarding images submitted as ex card illustrations and the ex card template

When making your submission, please submit two illustrations as listed in the Application Requirements—one version embedded into the card template and one version that is only the illustration (see the following images). Using effects on the provided ex card illustration template is prohibited. It must be used as is, without using effects like transparency.


Width: 1413 pixels
Height: 1924 pixels

You need to draw up to the four edges hidden by the card’s frame.

Color mode: RGB
File format: JPEG or PNG
Size: within 3MB

The template for ex Card Illustration

Please download the Photoshop data of the template for ex Card Illustration here. [64MB]

Things to Note When Submitting Your Art

  • You can only submit illustrations that have never been published before.
  • You are able to apply even if you have applied for the “Pokémon Trading Card Game Illustration Contest” before, as long as the art you submit is an unpublished one.
  • You cannot apply if you have already worked as a Pokémon Trading Card Game illustrator.
  • You cannot apply with illustrations that you have previously submitted to other contests.
  • We cannot return the data you have submitted.
  • We cannot accept physical submissions, such as illustrations on paper, figurines, etc.
  • You may submit up to three pieces of artwork. (You may choose three different Pokémon for each artwork submission, or you may choose the same Pokémon for some or all of the three submissions.)
  • If you want to modify a work you’ve already submitted, you can resubmit it through the application form as long as you do so before the contest’s deadline. However, please note that resubmitted corrected artwork counts toward the maximum submission limit of three pieces of artwork.
  • Please do not publish any of your submitted artworks before we announce the award recipients.
  • After we announce the award recipients, if your illustration has not received any award, you may publish it as you please.
  • ALL Submissions
  • A. MUST NOT include material which is (or promote activities which are) in Sponsors’ sole reasonable discretion, hateful, slanderous, libelous, tortious, sexually explicit, obscene, pornographic, inappropriate, violent, self-mutilating (e.g., relating to murder, the sales of weapons, cruelty, abuse, etc.), discriminatory (including but not limited to based on race, sex, religion, natural origin, physical disability, sexual orientation or age), illegal (e.g., underage drinking, substance abuse, computer hacking, etc.), offensive, threatening, profane, or harassing; or contain material that is threatening to any person, place, business, group or world peace; or contain words or symbols that are widely considered offensive to individuals of a certain race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation or socioeconomic group; or contain images, words or text portraying nudity, acts of violence, or acts that are or appear to be unlawful or dangerous or in violation of, or contrary to the laws or regulations in any state where the Submission is created in their application.
  • B. MUST NOT contain material that violates or infringes another’s rights, including but not limited to material that violates privacy, publicity, or intellectual property rights, or that constitutes copyright infringement.
    1. ⅰ.Without limiting the foregoing, Submissions MUST NOT include third-party trademarks, logos, insignia, location signage, photographs, artwork, or sculptures, except those of the Sponsors.
    2. ⅱ.MUST NOT include any reference to or performance of any copyrighted media production including but not limited to books, articles, photographs, artwork, music, etc., or identifying descriptions of any media property. Submissions must not include commercial music.
    3. ⅲ.If a Submission contains materials belonging to a third party that has provided Entrant with permission to use such materials in the Submission, Entrant must provide written copies of such permission on request by the Sponsors and ensure that the permission allows Sponsors to use the materials in full for any purpose as stated in section 8 below.
  • C. MUST NOT include third parties, including but not limited to minors, celebrities and friends, who have not expressly authorized Entrant to display their image or likeness in any submitted application or otherwise use such images or likenesses in accordance with these Official Rules. Entrant must be prepared to provide signed third-party authorizations upon request.
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