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Children’s Art Competitions

By May 17th, 2021Competitions

Our pick of the best UK Art Competitions for kids and young people in 2021. Open to children of all ages up to seventeen…

Most of our UK Art Competitions are for artists eighteen and over so I’m excited to start an alternative version for children and youths. Get in touch if you know of any more UK art contests for juniors and I’ll add the best ones here.

Seeing my childhood cartoon of Goofy cracking a joke win Mickey Mouse comic’s weekly competition was about as big a thrill as a creative kid could get. I hope this list leads to similar creative landmarks, good luck everyone!

Cairngorms Nature Art Competition

Cairngorms Nature Art Competition

Show your love for the nature of the Cairngorms National Park for a chance to win some fantastic wildlife watching prizes.

Close:23rd May 2021 enter now!
  • 1st Prize: Wildlife watching binoculars
  • 10 Finalists: Nature watching kits
Rules:Draw, paint or model a piece of artwork showing your favourite wildlife found in the Cairngorms National Park.
Ages:Open to all primary school aged children (UK)

Heroes Stamp Design

Heroes Stamp Design Competition

Eight winning entrants’ designs will feature on “Heroes Stamps” which the Royal Mail will issue in 2022 to celebrate the heroes of the pandemic.

Close:28th May 2021 enter now!
  • 1st Prize: £1,000 (8 winners will have their designs on stamps, £1,000 in vouchers & £1,000 for their schools)
  • 2nd Prize: £500 (Regional Winners will win £500 in vouchers and £500 cash for their schools)
  • 3rd Prize: £100 (Regional Finalists will win £100 in vouchers and £100 cash for their schools)
Rules:Children entering the competition are asked to design an image of their hero or heroes from the coronavirus pandemic. We will select winning designs on the basis of how well they satisfy the competition’s theme of “Honouring the heroes of the pandemic… on a stamp”. This includes the extent to which they are clearly of one or more heroes of the pandemic; are attractive and of immediate visual appeal; will replicate clearly on a stamp so richer colours and clear design are preferred. Each entry must be hand drawn by a child, must be completely the child’s own original work and must not copy any other work.
Ages:All children aged 4-14 from across the UK (except residents of the Isle of Man and Channel Islands) can enter the competition through their school, or independently from a school with permission from an adult.

Hidden Gallery

Hidden Gallery Kids Art Competition

Create your own masterpiece inspired by an artwork on the Hidden Gallery website for a chance to win £150 and L’émouchet dual tips pen sets.

Close:31st May 2021 enter now!
  • 1st Prize: £150 (Overall winner from all age groups wins £150 Amazon Gift Card & L’émouchet 168 Pens Set)
  • Age Group Winners: L’émouchet Pens Set
Rules:Choose an artwork from the Hidden Gallery website that and create your own artwork inspired by your choice. It can be a drawing, painting, sculpture or any other medium you like.
Ages:Three age groups: 0-8, 9-13, 14-17.

Childrens Art Competition - design a city saving robot

Design A City-Saving Robot!

The GeoSquad comic from National Geographic Kids want you to design a city-saving robot vehicle of the future!

Close:31st May 2021 enter now!
  • 1st Prize: One winning entry will have their vehicle included in the Get Kids Into Survey exploration poster, and will win a £50 voucher for GAME.
  • 2 Runners Up: T-shirt, stationery and posters.
Rules:Design a city-saving robot vehicle of the future! Your vehicle must be able to: Collect and recycle trash into something useful. Detect and fix structural damage. Clean and sanitise any hazardous spills. It must also be autonomous (self-driving), and be powered by a clean energy source!
Ages:16 and under

JUICE Up Your Rocket! art competition

JUICE Up Your Rocket! Art Competition

Ready to be a part of an exciting space mission? ESA and Paxi are calling on space-inspired kids to help launch ESA’s exciting new mission to Jupiter!

Close:1st June 2021 enter now!
  • 1st Prize: The winner’s illustration will be printed on a giant sticker that will be placed on the fairing – that is the ‘nose’ – of the Ariane V rocket.
Rules:Help the European Space Agency create an illustration to decorate the huge Ariane V rocket that will launch the spacecraft on its long journey towards planet Jupiter. Submit a drawing inspired by the JUICE mission and by planet Jupiter and its gigantic moons.
Ages:Kids up to 12 years old (living in Europe)

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Barton Peveril Art Competition

Barton Peveril Art Competition

Enter your favourite artwork to this annual art competition open to students from UK secondary schools in two age categories.

Close:4th June 2021 enter now!
  • 1st Prize year 9, 10 & 11: £100 (Amazon Giftcard)
  • 2nd Prizes: 2 x £50 (Amazon Giftcard)
  • 1st Prize year 7 & 8: £50 (Amazon Giftcard)
  • 2nd Prizes: 2 x £25 (Amazon Giftcard)
Rules:Enter an image of your favourite piece of artwork you’ve created.
Ages:Secondary students in year 7 & 8 and year 9, 10 & 11.

UKTS Art Competition

UKTS 2021 Art Competition

The Thalassaemia Society asks entrants to create an image of what comes to mind when you think of blood or DNA or thalassaemia.

Close:4th June 2021 enter now!
  • 1st Prize: £100 (17+ age category)
  • 1st Prize: £50 (all other age groups)
  • 2nd Prize: £30 (for each age group)
  • 3rd Prize: £20 (for each age group)
Rules:Create an image of what comes to mind when you think of blood or DNA or thalassaemia.
Ages:3 to 5 years, 6 to 9 years, 10 to 12 years, 13 to 16 years, 17+

Ocean Awareness Contest

Ocean Awareness Contest

The 10th annual (US based) competition invites 11-18 year olds from around the world to submit a creative response on the theme ‘Water Rising’.

Close:14th June 2021 enter now!
  • Gold (Junior): $1,000, (Senior): $1,500
  • Silver (Junior): $750, Silver (Senoir): $1,000
  • Bronze (Junior): $250, Bronze (Senoir): $500
  • Honorable Mention: $50, Bronze (Senoir): $100
Rules:The 2021 Ocean Awareness Contest theme WATER RISING challenges students to explore and understand their connection to water, and to creatively communicate the need to protect this vital resource and life-sustaining relationship. What are the stories we need to tell about water to sustain and conserve it for current and future generations of life on Earth? Submissions are accepted in: Visual Art, Creative Writing. Film, Interactive & Multimedia, Performing Arts: Music & Dance, Poetry & Spoken Word.
Ages:Junior 11-14, Senior 15–18 years old

Write On Art

Write on Art

Annual national writing competition sponsored by Art UK and the Paul Mellon Centre to encourage an interest in art history among young people.

Close:30th June 2021 enter now!
  • 1st Prize: £500
  • 2nd Prize: £250
  • 3 Runners Up: £100
Rules:Choose an artwork from the Art UK website that interests or intrigues you.Write about it in a way that would persuade people to share your interest and enthusiasm. (400 or 600 words depending on age category)
Ages:15-18 year olds

Great Paper Escape

The Great Paper Escape

Two holiday vouchers worth £1,000 each are up for grabs, to enter have fun and get creative with paper.

Close:30th June 2021 enter now!
  • 2 x £1,000 holiday vouchers
  • 2 x £250 experience vouchers
  • 30 x laptop bags
Rules:Have fun with paper and be creative! Once you have your drawing, painting, poem, space helmet or princess tiara… whatever you’ve made from paper – photograph your creation and submit on the website. Must be a resident of England, Scotland or Wales.
Ages:All ages, entry must be submitted by someone over 18.

Design A Future City

Design A Future City!

What do YOU think urban living will be like in 30 years? Send in your designs for the towns of tomorrow and you could win a top prize!

Close:30th June 2021 enter now!
  • 3 Winners: Three winners will each scoop a £200 voucher for which sells eco-friendly toys and clothes! They’ll will also get their very own Covestro lab coat and goggles.
Rules:Use your imagination to design a city of the future that’s green, hi-tech and fun to live in! What will housing, transport, play areas and entertainment be like in 30 years time? What will power our cities? What materials will our homes and buildings be made from? And what kind of technology will we be using?
Ages:16 and under

Sketch For Survival

Sketch For Survival

More than 35,000 species are threatened with extinction, submit your animal or wildlife art for exhibition & auction to help raise funds & awareness.

Close:30th June 2021 enter now!
  • 100 Finalists: your artwork will be exhibited at London’s prestigious gallery@oxo to a wide audience and sold via online auction in aid of 21 For 21 Projects and 1 year membership to Explorer Club.
  • Wildlife Artist of the Year: 5 shortlisted artists go to event at the Royal Geographical Society in London on 18 Nov where winner will be announced.
  • Wild Spaces Artist of the Year: 5 shortlisted artists go to Royal Geographical Society event.
  • Leisure Painter’s People’s Choice Award: Profile piece published in magazine and one year subscription.
  • The Artist Award: Profile piece published in magazine & one year subscription.
  • Junior Introducing Artist of the Year: 3 shortlisted artists go to Royal Geographical Society event.
Rules:Original signed two-dimensional A4 or A3 size work in either of two categories – Wildlife: The main focus should be an endangered species. Depict one or several animals from the IUCN red list. Wild Spaces: Your image should depict an at risk landscape/seascape or a species of plant. For example, a wood or forest, a coral reef, mountain range, coastline, wetland – any wild space threatened by environmental factors such as global warming or human activity. Or specific species of threatened plant/flower/tree/coral on the red list.
Ages:UK & International artists age 16 and younger.


SSERC STEM Digital Image Competition

Create a cover image on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics for the Scottish Schools Education Research Centre’s 2021 Annual Report.

Close:30th June 2021 enter now!
  • 1st Prize: £125 Amazon Voucher (+ image displayed at SSERC HQ)
  • 10 x Runners Up: £50 Amazon vouchers (+ image included in annual report & displayed at SSERC HQ)
Rules:Create an A4 sized colour or black & white image to go on the front page of the annual report. The image can be colour or black and white. It should be STEM-related (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) but think outside the box. The image should be 2717 x 3543 pixels. Around 23 x 30cm at 300dpi.
Ages:Secondary-aged pupils across Scotland.

Kids Wild Art Competition

RSPB Kids Wild Art 2021

Create a piece of art inspired by nature and let your imagination run WILD in this kids art competition from the RSPB and the Cameron Bespolka Trust.

Close:August 2021 enter now!
  • First Prize: £100 art vouchers for each category winner. There are also RSPB runner-up prizes for each category and age group.
Rules:Create a piece of art inspired by nature, 2021 themes to be announced.
Ages:Under 8s, 8-12, and 13-18.

Awaiting Entry


Toyota Dream Car Art Contest

Global competition that invites children under the age of 15 to let their imaginations run wild by designing cars of the future.

Close:January 2022 awaiting entry
  • 1st Prize: Winners of the national competition are invited to an awards ceremony at Toyota GB HQ to receive a variety of different prizes, including computer tablets and Toyota goody bags. Their entries will also go forward to the the global competition and the chance to win the trip of a lifetime to Japan.
Rules:Design a car of the future.
Ages:Children under the age of 15

RHS Photo Competition

RHS Photo Competition

The RHS Photographic Competition inspires young and old alike to get outdoors and record how enriching and inspiring gardens and plants can be.

Close:February 2022 awaiting entry
  • Under 18s Prizes:
  • 1st Prize: £150 (Wex Photographic vouchers)
  • 2nd Prize: £75 (Wex Photographic vouchers)
  • 3rd Prize: £50 (Wex Photographic vouchers)
  • Under 11s Prizes:
  • 1st Prize: £150 (Wex Photographic vouchers)
  • 2nd Prize: £75 (Wex Photographic vouchers)
  • 3rd Prize: £50 (Wex Photographic vouchers)
Rules:Photographs depicting something plant, garden or wildlife related that interests you
Ages:10 and under, 11-17 years old, 18+ in adults category

Global Canvas – Children’s Wildlife Art Competition

Global Canvas – Children’s Wildlife Art Competition

Annual group art contest for children 16 and under encouraging collaboration and creativity around wildlife and the environment.

Close:February 2022 awaiting entry
  • Prizes to be announcedlast year’s prizes included: trophies, DSWF species adoptions, art materials vouchers for the top 3 schools, and a selection of books.
Rules:2021’s theme was “Healing Nature – A Planet on the Edge” Each group’s entry should fill a wall space 180cm x 180cm with a table 180cm x 60cm in front. Be as creative as you can, using anything from paint, sculpture or sewing to recycled art, to create your own mini-exhibition! Make sure that you use some form of recycled materials in the final piece. 2019’s winners.
Ages:16 and under. The competition is group entry: art groups, classes, year groups, groups of friends or a whole school! (16-22 year olds can enter the Human Impact category of Wildlife Artist of the Year).

Postcards from the Trafalgar Way

Postcards from the Trafalgar Way

Create an artwork based on a feature on the historic Trafalgar Way route (Falmouth to London) prizes in three age categories: 7-11, 12-16 and 17-adult.

Close:April 2022 awaiting entry
  • 1st Prize (age 17-adult): 2 x £1,000
  • 1st Prize (age 12-16): 2 x £500
  • 1st Prize (age 7-11): 2 x £250
  • Schools Prize (age 7-11): £250
  • John Richards Lapenotiere Trophy: £500 (for resident in one of the 8 counties of The Trafalgar Way)
  • A touring exhibition will take place in 2021 (shortlisted announced 25th May 2021)
  • Full list of prizes and details
Rules:Take a stunning photograph or create a two-dimensional artwork (including digital art) of a scene along The Trafalgar Way (size range: A6 to A1)
Ages:7-11, 12-16, 17 to adult

Young Artists’ Summer Show

The Young Artists’ Summer Show

A free, open submission exhibition from the Royal Academy for young artists aged 5 – 19 years studying in the UK and British schools overseas.

Close:April 2022 awaiting entry
  • Prizes to be announcedsee last year’s prize winners. Selected pieces will be shown in an online exhibition and some will also be shown at the Royal Academy of Arts.
Rules:First, a teacher needs to register your school. Once the school is registered, your artworks can be submitted. If you’re 12 or under, a teacher or parent/guardian will need to enter for you; if you’re 13 or over you can submit artworks yourself. Each student can submit up to three artworks of any type and there is no theme. When you enter, we’ll ask for images of your artwork plus some information about the piece such as title, size, and a little text about the artwork and why you made it.
Ages:Students aged 5-19 studying in the UK or attending a British school overseas

Unique Art Awards

Unique Art Awards

Art Competition for disabled children 7-21 years old. Prizes include up to £600 for entrants and £3,000 for their school/college Art Department.

Close:April 2022 awaiting entry
  • Gold (1st): £600 in vouchers and £3,000 for their school
  • Silver (2nd) – £400 in vouchers and £2,000 for their school
  • Bronze (3nd) – £200 in vouchers and £1,000 for their school
  • Art teacher of the Year: £2,000 vouchers, or equivalent for other department winners
  • Each finalist will receive a certificate and a £50 Great Art Voucher
Rules:All entrants for the competition must have a disability of some kind. The subject for all categories are: CORONA, MY HAPPY PLACE, COMMUNITY, HOW THE WORLD SEES ME or PLASTIC. Groups: 2D Art/Painter, Photographer, 3D Sculpture, Digital Art, Performing Arts
Ages:Child 7–15, Youth 16–21 years old

Art Gemini Prize 2021

Art Gemini Young Artist Prize

The Art Gemini Prize promotes international contemporary art for emerging and established artists and is free to enter for artists 17 and under.

Close:May 2022 awaiting entry
  • Young Artist Prize: £250
Rules:Any kind of 2D and 3D art (excluding installation and video)
Ages:17 years and under

wonders of water competition

Climate Change Painting Competition

International art prize for school pupils aged 6-16 for original work related to ocean conservation. Hosted by the Taiwan Institute of Sustainable Energy.

Close:May 2022 awaiting entry
  • Platinum Prize (ages 12–16): $350
  • Gold Prize: $300
  • Silver Prize: $250
  • Bronze Prizes: 5 x $200
  • Honorable mentions: 5 x $150
  • Platinum Prize (ages 6–12): $250
  • Gold Prize: $200
  • Silver Prize: $150
  • Bronze Prizes: 5 x $100
  • Honorable mentions: 5 x $70
Rules:Express your interest in oceans and climate change through painting. Participants can use watercolor, crayons, printmaking, ink painting, colored pens, or any combination of these on paper. Sketches, collage, and 3D artwork are not accepted. Awards will be announced in mid-May.
Ages:6–16 year olds (all nationalities)

D31 Photography Prize

D31 Young Photographers Prize

Ten under 16 finalists will be selected for an exhibition at the Doncaster based gallery this summer on the theme “Black & White Visual Arts Photography”.

Close:May 2022 awaiting entry
  • 1st Prize: £100
  • 2nd Prize: £50
  • 3rd Prize: £20
Rules:Enter up to 2 photographs on the theme “Black and White Visual Arts Photography”. £10 exhibition fee if longlisted.
Ages:Under 16s worldwide.

The End!

That’s it for now but stay tuned for further kids art competitions in 2021 and beyond as more prizes and contests are announced.

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