Illustration from Penguin's Party Problems by Alice Horn
Illustration from Penguin’s Party Problems by Alice Horn

Picture Hooks Competitions in 2023: Before and After

Posted on April 5, 2023

We are very excited to announce a new format for our illustration competitions in 2023!

In 2020, Picture Hooks launched its first illustration competition to inspire and promote aspiring children’s book illustrators during lockdown. Since that time we have run 17 illustration competitions on themes like Seed to Table, Summer Surprises, Peace and Friendship, awarding cash prizes to each winner and promoting all runners up on our social media pages. Entry to our competitions is always free.

In 2023, we want our competitions to focus on a vital skill for wannabe children’s book illustrators: character! This year our competitions will invite illustrators to enter not one but two narrative illustrations for children, showing the same character or characters before and after a transition. The ability to create a consistent, relatable character across different contexts – both physical and emotional – is a core skill publishers look for in children’s book illustrators, and one which we wanted to challenge our entrants to develop this year.

We will also be evolving our approach to prize money in 2023. The winner of each Picture Hooks illustration competition will now receive £500, with two additional runners up each receiving £250 – giving more illustrators the chance to win a cash prize for their work.

Follow us on social media and keep your eyes peeled for our first ‘Before and After’ competition opening later this month.

We can’t wait to meet your characters!

Illustration from Penguin’s Party Problems by Alice Horn (Insta: @alice.paints,

« »