Nail Art Criteria

Art Definitions

Balance: The way of combining elements to add a feeling of equilibrium or stability to a work of art. Major types are symmetrical and asymmetrical.
Emphasis (contrast): A way of combining elements to stress the differences between those elements
Proportion: A principle of design that refers to the relationship of certain elements to the hall into each other
Gradation: A way of combining elements by using a series of gradual changes in those elements. (Large shapes to small shapes, dark hue to light hue, etc.)
Harmony: A way of combining similar elements in an artwork to accent their similarities (achieved through use of repetitions or settle gradual changes)
Movement: A principle of design used to create the look and feeling of action and to guide the viewers eyes throughout the work of art.
Line: an element of art defined by a point moving in space. Line maybe two or three dimensional, descriptive, implied, or abstract.
Shape: an element of art that is the dimensional, flat, or limited to height and width.
Form: an element of art that is three dimensional and then encloses volume; includes height, width AND depth (as in a cube, a sphere, A pyramid, or a cylinder) Form may also be free flowing
Value: The lightness or darkness of tones or colors. White is the lightest value. Black is the darkest value. The value halfway between these extremes is called middle gray.
Space: An element of art by which positive and negative areas are defined or a sense of depth achieved in a work of art.
Color: an element of art made up of three properties; hue, value, and intensity.
Hue: name of color
Intensity: Quality of brightness and purity (high intensity= color is strong and bright low intensity = color is faint and dull)
Texture: An Element of art that refers to the way things feel, or look as if they might feel if touched.

Color theory

  • Use of Color or chromatic analysis
  • How the color theory has been applied.
  • Emphasis helps to see the definition of artwork
  • The hues of colors chosen should complement the design and flow throughout or graduate through all nails/object.
  • Value has been applied, use of dark and light.

Graphic Quality

  • The texture of the design is done perfectly to represent the style chosen.
  • Use of art mediums must used to create emphasis and texture.
  • If there is line or details in the artwork, the space and shape must be well defined


  • There must be a minimum of 3 art mediums used on every nail.
  • The mediums should used to represent harmony in a creative manner.
  • The mediums should be used for gradation to accent the artwork
  • Each media will receive 1/3 of the score. If 4 or more mediums are used the score will be divided appropriately

Total impression

  • The first impression of the artwork in its entirety
  • The artwork should attract your vision, compelling you to give more attention to the artworks detail.


  • The ability to represent all of the artistic elements properly, with a clean appearance.
  • There should not be any visible imperfections in the construction of the artwork. For example; there should not be any visible imperfections in the construction of the artwork. For example; fingerprints into the paint, glue resin on embellishments. Excessive amount of gel. Dust that was not properly removed are all considered poor workmanship

Level of Difficulty

  • The complexity of the design is evaluated on it's degree of expertise.
  • Is the art executed without any elaboration (simple) or is there more difficulty and expertise put into the making of the design.


  • How the artwork is proportioned
  • The design should have movement from each nail so that the eye is drawn from nail to nail.
  • The nails represent the artwork individually while also representing the artwork in its entirety
  • Different dimension within the artwork depending the placement of each piece as the completed scene.


  • The design should not be too busy or too sparse.
  • The art should look evenly balanced on each nail and from nail to nail.
  • There should not be large portions on the surface of the nail left without design.
  • The combination of artistic elements add a feeling of equilibrium or stability to the artwork

Continuity of Theme

  • The theme should be carried through the design in some manner on each nail.
  • The design should compliment and have continuance from nail to nail while representing the theme.

Clarity of Design

  • The design must be apparent and identifiable?
  • Is there intensity that enhances the clarity on each nail?
  • All of the artistic representation must be presented in a manner that is identifiable.


  • The theme or design should be something you have not seen before or an original interpretation of artwork that is commonly seen.


  • Creative use of art mediums.
  • There should be a creative collaboration of art mediums that are used.
  • It should be a creative interpretation of design


  • The design appears completely finished on each nail
  • No artwork was left unfinished. Artwork that wasn't finished being completely executed. Example: face with no lips or eyes, car without the tires, dog without a tail

3-D Presentation

  • There should be artistic form present on each nail
  • The 3D form should be presented with clean application
  • The 3D form should be created with unique style and shape
  • The form should have texture


  • A principle of design indicates movement was created by the careful placement of repeated elements in the work of art to cause a visual tempo or beat


  • A principle of design concerned with diversity or contrast.
  • Variety is achieved by using different shapes, sizes, and or colors in a work of art.