Community News

Artists and aspiring graphic and fashion designers could win $1,000 through a new T-shirt design contest hosted by ClearWater Arts Center & Studios, in partnership with Studio Print Shop. Four winning artists will have their designs printed on shirts that will be sold at ClearWater Arts Center. Designs must convey a message of creative and cultural inclusion rooted in the artist’s or designer’s experience.

Located in the Gibson Village community near Downtown Concord, ClearWater Arts Center & Studios is a place for artists and the community to gather, create, and learn.

“ClearWater is a place where people from all walks of life and cultural backgrounds and ages can come together and find community through the activity of art,” said Sarah Gay, ClearWater Coordinator. “As our city continues to grow and expand, we want to continue to be part of that creative fabric and this T-shirt contest will help us do that by connecting with diverse communities across our city and region.”

The T-shirt contest is made possible thanks to a grant from the Grassroots Arts Program of the North Carolina Arts Council, a state agency, and the Cabarrus Arts Council. Through the T-shirt contest, ClearWater Arts Center hopes to provide a platform for aspiring artists and designers to showcase their talent while also conveying their message of community, inclusion, and creativity.

Concord-based apparel printing company, Studio Print Shop, is partnering with ClearWater on the contest. Their vision is “to create a community where we believe in people, their innate creativity, and produce that which speaks to the heart and soul.” Studio Print Shop will help with promotions and will print the winning T-shirt designs.

ClearWater is hosting an informational meeting for interested artists and designers on Saturday, March 30, 2024, at 2 p.m. The meeting will be held in the Main Gallery at Clear Water Arts Center & Studios, located at 223 Crowell Dr. NW in Concord.

The contest is open to residents ages 15 and older who live within Cabarrus, Iredell, Mecklenburg, Rowan, Stanly, and Union counties. Applications are due April 30, 2024. There will be a public voting period with all submissions on display in the main gallery at ClearWater during the month of May. Winners will be announced on May 24, 2024.

Full contest rules and the application are available online at