Art Hedlund Student Model Making Competition

What is the Art Hedlund Student Model Making Competition?

The Art Hedlund Student Model Making Competition, a well-established part of the Association of Professional Model Maker’s regular conference program, now runs online via Instagram. Prizes are offered for 3 winners (1st $300, 2nd $200 and 3rd $100), and we will feature these and some ‘honorary mentions’ on our Instagram, in our newsletter and at other events. This is a great opportunity to add an impressive accomplishment to your CV/resume!

The competition is open to students of any program that we recognize as teaching
professional model making. To enter, post images of your entry to your Instagram account during June 2022, describe the skills that you have used, include #APMMawards, tag your institution. Remember that the competition is not just about winning and losing, judging your work against others and the glory of winning… By showing your work online you can potentially promote yourself to a much wider audience than might be possible at graduation exhibitions, portfolio reviews, New Blades etc. The whole world will be able to see you work!

→ We’ve watched many of our SMMC alumni become talented professional members of the APMM – with some receiving internship and employment offers right at the Conference. Many return for Conferences as professional attendees, and even take on leadership roles in the APMM.

The competition is open for entries during June 2022. All entries must use #APMMawards to be recognized. Winners will be announced on or around 4th July. 

Prizes will be awarded after the competition results have been announced, and will be as follows:

• 1ST RUNNER UP: $200
• 2ND RUNNER UP: $100

Each winner will also receive free registration to the next APMM conference, a certificate of merit in pdf format, and will be invited to join ‘meet-ups’, conference events, etc. during the following year if/when applicable. Prize money will be awarded in US dollars and paid via PayPal as soon as can be arranged after winners have been announced. Winners will be contacted through Instagram to arrange a PayPal transaction. There is no need to demonstrate a PayPal account to enter, but prize money will only be paid to a PayPal account in the name of the winner. Fees and currency conversion costs will be applicable to this, but it will avoid the complication and delays of international money transfers.

As a competition winner, photos of your model and information about you will be featured on the APMM website following the competition. Images of your winning project will be also be permanently included in the Art Hedlund Student Model Making Competition archives, hosted on APMM's website.

Entrants must be enrolled in a college or university program that the APMM considers to
be focused on developing the skills of professional model making. Potential entrants can confirm eligibility by contacting [email protected], with detail of their program and including links to information showing model making content studied. The APMM reserves the right to decide eligibility of individual cases without discussion. We reserve the right to remove/disqualify entries, without notice, if deemed appropriate for any reason.

All entries must be made via the entrants Instagram account, and should include:

  • Images of one model made by the entrant
  • A description explaining the scale, techniques, materials etc. used in the model.
  • The institution at which the entrant is enrolled should be tagged (or mentioned if no account is available to be tagged)
  • All entries must use the hashtag #APMMawards

Entries must be made during the month of June, in the year of the competition. Entries will be acknowledged with a comment, on the Instagram post, from the @modelmakersorg

Choosing the right model can make for a very efficient way to show your skills and can engage your audience and make them want to know more. The right choice of subject can be a great ice breaker when networking with professionals.

  • Show a wide range of materials and techniques.
  • Choose a subject that will be familiar to judges. They will be able to appreciate just how believable and accurate the model is.

Good photography, just as if you were compiling a printed portfolio to take to interview, is
important. It is essential that the judges can see the details of the model, but also the quality of your presentation will attract attention.

  • Choose a clear and clean background. While ‘work in progress’ images will be fine taken on a workbench or in a studio, ‘Hero’ shots should treated to a background that at least looks like a photography studio.
  • Sometimes a model can be shown well in a specific location. A model of a coffee maker will present well if photographed in a clean and tidy, kitchen.


While a picture is worth a thousand words, you can explain the story of your model better with some information about it that may not be visible.

  • Put the most important things first
  • Be concise. Keep the description short
  • Use bullet points
  • Remember to proofread before posting!

A clear description should include:
1. Title / Short description of the model
2. Scale
3. Materials used
4. Techniques used
5. Reason / Use for the model

Our judging panel will consider the entries with the following criteria in mind. These will not be ‘scored’ to produce a numerical rank, but will assist judges in considering each entry fairly. The criteria are intended to ensure that competition entries are judged according to an agreed set of criteria that the APMM considers to be important to success in the professional model making industry.


  • How well does the post present the work?
  • Can we see the ‘story’ of the project?
  • Would it look good to an employer?
  • Good photography?
  • Clear description?
  • First impression?

Craftsmanship and Execution

  • Quality of finish?
  • Fine / scale detail?
  • Are construction methods too visible?
  • Are digital models ‘believable’?
  • A range of processes mastered?
  • Balance of CAD/CAM & traditional skills?

Commercial Relevance

  • Does the entry show valuable professional skills?
  • Is the entry made in a professional way?
  • Does the entrant show understanding of professional constraints?
  • Might you employ the entrant based on the entry?…

WOW Factor?!

  • What was your first impression of the entry?
  • + for innovative ideas
  • - for clichés…


Winners will be announced via the @modelmakersorg Instagram account on or around the 4th of July. Winners and, if applicable, honorable mentions will be celebrated in the APMM newsletter.

When Posting to Instagram

  • Use the #APMMawards hashtag to indicate your entry in the competition
  • Follow the APMM Instagram account (@modelmakersorg), and turn on notifications, to keep up to date with the competition
  • Tag your institution. This is important for us to verify that you are enrolled in a program that makes you eligible to enter. Please message via the @modelmakersorg Instagram account or email [email protected] if you have questions about your eligibility
  • Use hashtags (#) to encourage the right audience to find your post. We recommend:
    • #APMMawards
    • #getpaidtomake
    • #modelmaking
    • #modelmakingskills
    • #architecturalmodels
    • #propmaking
  • Tag the accounts of people who you want to see your posts. This is a great way to show work directly to those that will be able to offer you your dream job!

Any other Questions?…
Message via @modelmakersorg on Instagram, or email [email protected]
For more information about the Association of Professional Model Makers, visit or contact [email protected].

You can’t win unless you enter!

Past Art Hedlund Student Model Making Competition Winners

One of the highlights of our Conferences is to meet and get to know some of the rising stars in model making. Here are some past winners of our SMMC at Conferences.


1st Place - Chris Bradbury, AUB, "DeVilbis Spray Gun"

2nd Place - Tom Beardwell, AUB, "European Cave Spider"

3rd Place - Yudit Lee, AUB, "Lifeport Kidney Transport Device"



1st Place - Steve Ward, AUB, "The Pooper Scooter"

2nd Place (tie) - Sarah Crystal, AUB, "Lockheed Lounge”

2nd Place (tie) - Julia Hartwanger, AUB, "Bleriot's Monoplane"

3rd Place - Harry Quarendon, AUB, "Motorola Portable Phone


Marshall Coope, AUB, "Nomos Table"

Jasper Cousins, AUB, "Dali's Elephant"

Jack Hazell, AUB, "Mike Wazowski Stop Motion Puppet"

Linsey Jones, NWTC, "Wonder Woman Shield"

Josh King, AUB, "Electric Guitar"

Martha Lucas, AUB, "The Original Sony 'Walkman'"

Ollie Smither, AUB, "Rolleiflex Camera Replica"

Alex Stewart, AUB, "San Pietro in Montorio"

Lauren Taylor-Heaton, AUB, "Hidden Spy Camera"


1st Kester Freeman, AUB, for Butterfly Life Cycle

2nd (tie) Marcus Johnson, AUB, Construction Robot

2nd (tie) Stephen Ward, AUB, Lunar Rover

3rd (tie) Jonas Rochinas, AUB, Ducati Paginale 1199

3rd (tie) Krystal Duffy, AIS, Krystalized Comfort


1st Tom Anderson, AUB, White Whale

2nd Tom Hughes, AUB, T Rex

3rd Sadie Stanton, AUB, Manted Fly


1st Darwin Seeger, Bemidji State, Superfly 100 Mountain Bike

2nd Max Broman, Bemidji State, for R2-D2 Astromech Droid
(photo unavailable)

3rd (tie) Ernest Ang, Bemidji State, for Ping Pong Table

3rd (tie) Dawn Stephens, “Early” Salt + Pepper Shakers


1st Joshua Munchow, Bemidji State, Tri-Axial Tourbillon

2nd Shun Takahashi, Storage High Heel

3rd Michael C. Latzke, Bemidji State, Flying Bike with Rider


1st Christian Bennes and Daryl Davis, Bemidji State, Oil Well Pump

2nd Daryl Davis, Bemidji State, The Helm of Gimli

3rd Peter Fusco, NWTC, R2D2


Caliper Awards (granted by category)

Exhibit: Steven Barns, Michael Pauly and Thomas Sorenson, NWTC, Manitowoc Crane Model 21000

Transportation: Jason Laux, NWTC, Car Transport

Product: John Angeli, Bemidji State, High Lift Jack





2002 Silver Springs, MD AWARD WINNERS

Top Award Addy Widjaja

Best of Show Addy Widjaja

Best of Category (Architectural): Addy Widjaja

Best of Category (Product Design): Arthur Ward

Best of Category (Other/Group Projects) James Elliot, Mike Gofman. Mike Dwyer

Most Innovative: Rebecca Hayes

2001 Pasedena, CA AWARD WINNERS

1st Randy Kinser

2nd (tie) Brian Dugas, Peter Miro

2000 Cincinnati, OH AWARD WINNERS

1st David Domanski

2nd (tie) Tommy Lucas, Robin Krieg

1999 Grand Rapids, MI AWARD WINNERS

Best of Show

Jared Hamilton
Scott Divers
Eric Thompson
Anna Marietta
Paul Wraa
William Lambrechts

1998 Seattle, WA AWARD WINNERS


1997 Redondo Beach, CA AWARD WINNERS

Student Winners

Environmental: Hideki Nakashima
Miniatures/SFX: Michael J. Falcony, Harry Hoselton, Jedd Hearcey
Product: Randy Miller
Transportation: Justin Sands
Architectural: Jun Meguro

Student Best of Show

Michael J. Falcony
Harry Hoselton
Jedd Hearcey

Professional Winners

Scott Lukowski
Luke Lukowski
Pat Gillian
Gayle Rodgers

Professional Best of Show

Scott Lukowski
Luke Lukowski


Student Winners

Transportation: Ryan Nilsen
Product Design: Ryan Nilsen
Engineering/Scientific: Pamela Schroeder
Environmental: Matt Thonen
Miniatures/SFX: David Lark

Student Best of Show

David Larkin and Ryan Nilsen (tie)

Professional Winners

Craig Martin
Earl Rautenstrauch
Thomas McMahon

Professional Best of Show

Thomas McMahon

1995 Milwaukee, WI AWARD WINNERS

Student Winners

Transportation: Leigh Collyer and Brian Gross
Engineering/Scientific: David Lark
Product Design: Paul Petri, Scott Lucowski

Student Best of Show

Paul Petri, Scott Lucowski

Conference Foam Off

John Kammerer (student)
Chad Stuemke (professional)

Professional Winners

Jim Dore
Ed Gross
Duane Martinez
Will Neeley






If you are a past winner, or have records or photos of past winners, please get in touch



Arthur Hedlund, Jr. 1928 - 2006

Who Was Art Hedlund?

In the late '80's, Professor Art Hedlund started a model making program at Bemidji State University, supplementing an existing degree program in Industrial Arts Education. The new program included classes introducing the basic skills for model making, with emphasis on accurately interpreting documentation, finish work, safe tool-use and meeting deadlines. Core classes included woodworking, hot and cold metalworking, "industrial synthetics" (working with solid plastic stock, thermoforming, RTV molding, resins, injection molding, etc.), technical illustration, manual and computer drafting, and electronics and also included classes on managing both a project and a model shop.

Art always made sure the students kept a real-world job mindset. What the "client" wanted was the model maker's primary concern, and he said missing a deadline would result in not getting paid and therefore should result in failing the course. Sometimes a student could plead extenuating circumstances (sometimes involving Northern Minnesota winter weather) and avoid that, though.

Besides teaching technical skills, Art tried to make sure the students grasped the artistic and design elements of model making, like slightly dulling the specified material colors for small-scale architectural and other models so they wouldn't look like toys, or airbrushing subtle color transitions onto models of natural things.

While there were very few women in the model making program, and a lot of small-town guys who weren't prepared to deal with them as colleagues and competitors, Art made sure everyone in the program was treated with respect, given the same opportunities for paid work from local clients, and were fairly considered for internships. Many students were offered jobs after their internships but before they graduated, and Art encouraged them to finish their degrees first in order to maximize their future potential. A lot of current model shop managers and people who were able to move up in their companies are probably grateful for getting that advice.

Art was instrumental in establishing the model making program at BSU and is remembered as “a great professor and a student-oriented person.” Professional model makers recall being mentored and advised by Art, and of his lasting positive influence on their careers.

In 2006, our competition was renamed The Art Hedlund Memorial Student Model Making Competition (SMMC) recognizing the significant contributions of Mr. Hedlund as a teacher, mentor and guide for aspiring model makers.