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Forbidden Lands, Fallen Empires and Ancient Guardians | Forbidden Lands Categories

Gathering of Masters

Illustration contest where entrants can win VIP tickets to Gathering of Masters, Wacom Intuos Pro Tablet and Artstation memberships.

Gathering of Masters
Round of applause for our sponsors


On behalf of the sponsors and judges, The Rookies would like to congratulate the following category winners.


Rushil Kejriwal - The Skeleton Lake

The Skeleton Lake

In a cursed village in glacier of India. Every year as the ice melts in a glacial lake located in that town, hundreds of human skeletons are seen floating. Rediscovered by a forest ranger.

Runner Up

Etienne Vittani - Ancient Temple

Ancient Temple

An ancient temple built by an unknow civilization is discovered by a little group of explorer!

Highly Commended

Ismael Paddack Trudel - The Sewers

The Sewers

My entry for the "Forbidden Lands, Fallen Empires and Ancient Guardians" contest.

Highly Commended

Vladislav Andonov - Exploring the Lands

Exploring the Lands

An expedition set to explore unreachable high lands, discovers long ago lost and forgotten city. I'm curious, are there living people or just remnants of unknown culture?

People's Choice

Marina Serra - Secrets Of The Fallen

Secrets Of The Fallen

A temple guarded by a giant that continue to protect the mysteries the location holds even after their civilization is beyond gone.

Honorable Mentions

The following winners made a lasting impression on the judging panel and secured highly sought after badges.

ruoyuart (Finalist) View Entry
violet (Finalist) View Entry
chandriam (Finalist) View Entry
apjtart (Finalist) View Entry
stephennjoto (Finalist) View Entry
maxime (Finalist) View Entry
torea (Finalist) View Entry
chani (Finalist) View Entry
dominicaclaribelle (Finalist) View Entry
haoningw (Finalist) View Entry
suhyunbang (Finalist) View Entry
thomasgorski (Finalist) View Entry

Category Brief

Syn Studio Art School Montreal is conducting a brand new concept art and illustration contest called “Forbidden Lands, Fallen Empires and Ancient Guardians“. The event is sponsored by Syn Studio Gathering of Masters event, Wacom and ArtStation.

Contest Brief

This contest is targeted towards concept artists and illustrators.

Since the beginning of time, mankind has always been fascinated by forbidden lands, fallen empires and ancient guardians. Every culture around the world has myths, legends and stories of strange magical lands promising great treasures like the lost city of El Dorado or eternal youth like Tír Na nÓg or even the mysterious Area 51. We have heard stories of once great empires that collapsed eventually, taking their secrets with them and of ancient guardians silently watching over and protecting the people as well as the empire’s deepest secrets.

Show us your perspective and vision on the topic in a single, epic illustration that is both fantastic yet believable, original yet relate-able and which demonstrates high levels of artistic skill and storytelling ability.

The illustration must include an environment and may also include characters. Additionally, it may also include creatures, props and vehicles. It also needs to tell a story involving this world (topic).


Entrants must submit a single high-resolution image (1920px+ on longest edge) for their final update. Example: Landscape should have 1,920px+ width. Portrait should have 1,920px+ height.

Work-in-progress artwork submitted as regular updates to show the progress is also required. Example: silhouettes, sketches, progress shots, etc

Requirements & Deliveries

This is a Play-by-Play contest. Entrants need to share their progress by adding multiple updates to your entry page, similar to how a forum discussion works. Learn more about Play-by-Play contests in our Helpdesk.

We want you to create an entry page that shares your entire process from beginning through to final work. As a result, entries that only upload a single update will not be considered.

Judging Criteria

Your illustration will be judged on its originality, design, rendering and its narrative quality. A rich and well thought-out concept, a compelling composition, lighting and use of colour are critical for the success of your illustration.

Important Dates

  • Open for submission 4th March 2020
  • Entries close 2nd May 2020.
  • Finalists announced 12th May 2020.
  • Winners announced 18th May 2020.
  • Dates mentioned are at 11:59 pm on the date in question.
  • All dates are based on GMT.

Who Can Enter?

Only members of The Rookies can enter this contest. This means that you must be an aspiring artist. You can be a student, self-taught artist, or even a hobbyist. Please note that anyone with more that 12 months professional experience in a related industry is not eligible to enter.

How to Enter

Use the button below to Create an Entry. Use this entry page to share updates as you create your masterpiece. Your last update will be considered as your final submission.

Gathering of Masters
Gathering of Masters
Gathering of Masters