Tips and FAQs

A number of improvements have been made to the submission system, which will reduce the time it takes to upload submission content. Regardless, preparation and upload of content will still be time consuming so you should plan to submit entries well before the deadline.

Read the application/entry information carefully to ensure that you have entered your project/s in the most appropriate category. Some projects may be suitable for entry into more than one category. 

Written Criteria

The written submissions are very important and are read carefully by the jurors. Ensure that you:

  • respond to the criteria succinctly and with relevant, factual information.  Point form is fine.  Avoid repetition. 
  • use the written submission component to explore aspects of the projects that the jury can’t discern from the images. 
  • complete your written criteria in a word document and then cut and paste your responses into the relevant parts of the online submission form. This will mean that you have a back up. For full details of written criteria, download a PDF of the entry process.
  • use standard title and sentence casing throughout your submission, as some of the submitted data is published to the online gallery as is.

Sustainability Advancement Award

There are two written criteria for primary category entries and both make reference to sustainability.  The first is where you should describe the sustainability strategies implemented, while the second is where you should elaborate on how this advances the pursuit of sustainability.  The jury will use your responses to these criteria to decide the Sustainability Advancement Award.  Implementation of recognised/standard Greenstar-rating initiatives should not be the main focus of your responses.  Entrants are encouraged to clearly identify the innovation and creativity of the application of sustainability principles in the project. This may be related to innovation and creativity in:

  • materials or components specifically re-used, developed or sourced for the project (recycled, organic or sustainably harvested, manufactured to avoid use of toxic or hazardous substances, sourced or manufactured to minimise energy use or embodied energy, sourced or manufactured to minimise water use, potential for re-use or recycle, innovative design strategy that minimises material quantities and wastage, durability)
  • specified elements/products such as furniture for example (recycled content in the item itself, recyclable content:  product stewardship, sourced or manufactured to minimise energy use or embodied energy, longevity and avoiding obsolescence, durability) 
  • interior services (innovative design strategy that minimises energy and resource use and wastage, design strategy that minimises ozone depleting agents, individually controllable interior environmental conditions) 
  • features of the project that educate users in aspects of environmental sustainability and/or encourage ethical environmentally sustainable behaviours in users
  • other considerations (specifically developed design strategy to encourage alternative transportation, design strategy for waste management systems/design strategy for sustainable communities).

Image Selection

Use a professional photographer to document your projects. The early stages of judging are based on visual criteria, so give your project the best possible chance of getting through the judging processes by submitting high quality images.

Use images that best suit the category you have chosen to enter. Select interior images that illustrate what you have said about your project in the written statement. For example, if the design of an entrance area is particularly important to the success of your project, make sure you supply an image of the entrance.

Provide images that are indicative of the project in its entirety, and that tell the project’s story in a logical way. Images that focus on small details (i.e. a single fixture, artwork or merchandise in a retail outlet for example) tend to be of limited use to the jury.

Avoid submitting photoshopped images. Jurors can tell, and often respond negatively to images that have been enhanced.

Drawings, Plans and Elevations

In addition to providing drawings, plans and elevations, consider including schematic drawings, concept sketches and images of models. This will assist the jury in understanding the big ideas driving the project.


  1. How long will it take to upload my high resolution images? 
    This is a difficult question to answer as it will depend on a number of factors such as the distance from the server and your connection speed.  All things considered, it shouldn’t take longer than 10 minutes per image on a standard ADSL2+ connection.
  2. How can I queue the upload of images for multiple project entries?
    This may be accomplished by opening multiple browser windows or tabs, with one for each entry.
  3. How can I make sure that my images have loaded correctly, without being corrupted?
    You will see a thumbnail of the images you have uploaded. If there is no thumbnail, or the size doesn’t look correct, the image is probably corrupted and you should reload.

System Requirements

We recommend using Google’s Chrome browser to submit your entry: This is free to download. Other modern browsers with the latest version of Javascript and cookies enabled may also be suitable. Internet Explorer 7 and below are not recommended.

Troubleshooting image upload difficulties

Note that images that don’t conform to the specified file format and size will be rejected.

  1. Repeat the process once and check that you get the same result.
  2. Install Google Chrome:, and use it to complete your entry.
  3. Complete your entry promptly and in one sitting. Do not leave the browser open for long periods with no activity.
  4. Clear your browser’s cookies and cache.
  5. Try another computer.
  6. Run your operating system’s update facility and retry.
  7. Get some help from IT staff.

If you still have problems after following all of these steps, please call support staff on (03) 8699 1000.