Sketch for Survival Junior 2024

A global art initiative in aid of conservation.

Be a part of Sketch for Survival Junior by entering our art competition which is open to everyone aged 16 years and under.


Sketch for Survival Junior helps to raise vital awareness about species extinction and biodiversity loss while also raising funds for projects around the world.

The competition showcases a range of different art styles and unites the voices of young people from all around the world in support of conservation. We regularly receive entries from around the world including Singapore, Sri Lanka, India, China, South Korea,  Iran, Pakistan, the Philippines, Malaysia, Australia & NZ, Canada, the US, Brazil, Dubai, Qatar, Turkey, Tanzania, South Africa and most countries in Europe.

In 2024 we have three age groups  –  these are detailed below for you. Submissions open 1 February and close 30 June.


Competition Summary

Anyone aged 16 and under can enter Sketch for Survival Junior;

There are three age groups: up to 7 years old, 8-12 years old & 13-16 years old;

Artworks should focus on a threatened species (please see full guidelines below regarding what you can enter);

The closing date is 30 June;

Our expert selection panel includes artists Gary Hodges and Sophie Green;

4 artworks in each age category (from all submissions) will be selected for exhibition and auction. Other selected entries will be showcased online;

School entries welcome – please see below for full details;

ALL proceeds from the auction of Sketch for Survival Junior artworks in November support our Project Fund.

There are 3 stages to the competition:

Stage 1 – Enter Online: submissions open 1 February and close 30 June

It is free to enter. Please ensure your artwork meets the criteria or it will be discounted.

Stage 2 – Longlist Announced: Midday Thursday 4 July

Our panel will review all entries using the submission form and image provided. If you are longlisted by the selection panel – congratulations –  you will be asked to ship the original artwork to Explorer HQ in Norfolk, UK. Full details will be provided. Longlisted artists are guaranteed a spot in the Exhibition Collection (exhibited & auctioned) OR the Highly Commended collection (displayed and sold in pop-up shops and online store).

Stage 3 – Final Collections Announced: Midday Thursday 19 September



All participants are able to download a participation certificate. The link to this is provided when you complete the submission form. Please look out for the confirmation screen which appears immediately after you submit your form.

Additional certificates are also issued to the finalists, to the winners in each age category, and to schools, by our school co-ordinator, Neil.

Schools & Colleges are encouraged to enter. Visit our dedicated Schools Page for more details.

Please note: no artworks can be returned. Please do not send us your artwork unless we have requested it. Thank you.


Full Submission Guidelines

The competition is open to anyone aged up to 16 years old.

You can live anywhere in the world.

There are three age categories:

Up to 7 years old

8-12 years old

13-16 years old

You should enter the age category based on your age at the time of submission.

For example, if you celebrate your 8th birthday in April 2024:

You would enter the Up to 7 category if completing your artwork and submitting your entry in February; you would enter the 8-12 category if completing your artwork and submitting your entry in June 2023.


By submitting an artwork to Sketch for Survival Junior you will be helping to make a stand against extinction – you will help us to raise awareness about threats facing wildlife and wild spaces.

Every participant will be able to download a digital Certificate of Participation.

Every participant is invited to attach a photo of themselves with their artwork to their submission form – these images will be made into a supporters’ mosaic and included in our exhibition.

There are tangible benefits for the junior finalists:

Your artwork will be exhibited in London & Edinburgh;

seen by a wide audience.

sold by online auction alongside our main collections.

Longlisted artworks (runners-up) will be available to buy from our pop up and online store, to raise funds for conservation.

Please read these submission guidelines carefully. Submissions open 1 February and close 30 June.

1.Click the ENTER link on this page from 1 February which will open a submission form.  Please make sure you enter the correct age category. Follow the instructions on the submission form and complete all the fields.

2.Attach a good quality JPEG image of your completed artwork to the submission form. It can be up to 5MB in size. PDFS NOT PERMITTED.

3.Attach a photo of you with your artwork (optional) – this will be used in a mosaic of all entries for our exhibitions.

4.Download a certificate of participation. When you complete the submission form and press ENTER you will see a confirmation message pop up on your screen. Follow the link to download a certificate of participation. You will not receive an email.

NB.The first stage of selection is done online by viewing your image so please make sure it is in focus and labelled correctly with your name and age! A photo taken on your mobile phone should be fine.


Schools/colleges are encouraged to enter. Each school that enters will receive an eAlbum of their entries as well as having a winner selected from their entries by us. All pupil entries will also be included in the relevant categories of the Junior Competition.

How to enter as a school – please read these guidelines first so you know what is eligible.

  1. To submit multiple entries for schools please use our  School/College Bulk Upload Form.  (XL Spreadsheet). The teacher will need to complete all the fields on the form.
  2. Create a zipped folder with the images of all the artworks in. Please use your school name to name the folder so we can identify the entries and file them correctly. Each artwork within the folder should be labelled with the child’s name.
  3. Take a class photo with the children holding their artworks (optional)
  4. Your completed form, the zipped folder and your class picture should then be emailed all together (or sent via WeTransfer) to [email protected]

We have seen an increase in school participation and as a result we are in the process of creating a Schools’ Support Pack with the help of a dedicated schools co-ordinator.

Further information can be found on our dedicated Schools Page. This has information on the competition, other resources we can provide for teachers, and the benefits of participating.

Every year the standard of artwork goes up and deliberations take longer!

The selection panel is tasked with selecting a shortlist of 4 artworks in each age group for the exhibition:

Under 7s

8 – 12 year olds

13 – 16 year olds

The shortlist in each age group will be displayed in London & Edinburgh .

All artworks will be available to purchase in support of our projects. Selected longlisted artworks will be showcased through our online channels.

Sketch for Survival Junior raises awareness about threatened species.

We use the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the world’s most comprehensive information source on the global conservation status of animal, fungi and plant species, as a guide to which species are considered ‘threatened’.

The main focus of your artwork can be anything in the following categories from the IUCN Red List:

Vulnerable (VU)

Endangered (EN)

Critically Endangered (CR)

or Extinct in the Wild (EW)

These global categorisations mean the species faces a high risk of extinction. To check conservation status please visit www.IUCNredlist.org and use the species search.

Your chosen species can be within its habitat or pictured on its own.

The submission form will ask you to tell us exactly what have you drawn/painted.

All submissions to Sketch for Survival Junior must be unframed and on paper or parchment (no canvas / box frames).

We accept artworks in the following two size categories (landscape or portrait orientation accepted):

A4: Minimum size and visible area – 21 cm by 29.7 cm. Maximum paper size 23cm by 31.7cm.

Your paper size can be anywhere in the range from 21cm – 23cm (short side) by 29.7 cm – 31.7cm (long side).

Please note- this additional area will not be visible once mounted/framed in our reusable exhibition frames so please make sure anything important including your signature is within the visible area.




A3:Minimum size and visible area – 29.7cm by 42cm. Maximum paper size 31.7cm by 44cm.

Your paper size can be anywhere in the range from  29.7cm – 31.7cm (short side) by 42cm – 44 cm (long side). Please note this additional area will not be visible once mounted/framed in our reusable exhibition frames so please make sure anything important including your signature is within the visible area.

Artworks cannot be any smaller or any larger than the dimensions given above. They will not fit in our exhibition frames and will be dicounted from selection.

**If you are cutting down your artwork,  please do not cut it right down to the minimum size – aim for somewhere in the middle of the range. **

All artworks must be original.

All mediums, techniques and styles are welcome.


Why do you have size restrictions?

  1. We use reusable exhibition frames to display the finalist’s artwork – this cuts down on plastic and packaging and helps our exhibition display look consistent.
  2. Having two set sizes gives us a level playing field and allows us to more fairly evaluate the merits of one artwork against another during the selection phase – this would be more difficult to do if we were comparing a huge artwork with a tiny one. Having a range of sizes would also increase the challenges we already face when hanging the exhibition at different venues.

One work per artist.

We are accepting online submissions until  30th June.

To enter, please complete our online submission form (opens 1 February)

Please do not send your artwork to us – the first stage of judging is done online.

If your name is on the longlist then you will be contacted by email and given full instructions on where to send your artwork in July.

After the submission deadline, all pieces will be reviewed by a panel of leading artists, including:

Gary Hodges is the UK’s best selling and most collectable wildlife pencil artist. He has been a judge for the David Shepherd Wildlife Artist of the Year Awards since 2008 and has won numerous awards in his own right.

Sophie Green is an award-winning wildlife artist and conservation activist. She has dedicated her time and artistic work to raising awareness for issues surrounding animal welfare and the environment, as well as donating a percentage of her profits to conservation charities. Sophie has been awarded the Medal of Excellence by the Artists For Conservation Foundation for her work in the conservation sphere, was highly commended in the Wildlife Artist of the Year competition and was the winner of the Leisure Painter People’s Choice Award. 

Sara White and Robert Ferguson, founding trustees of Explorers Against Extinction will complete the panel.

You may find the Sketch for Survival archive at the bottom of the page a useful tool before deciding what to submit. The archive will give you some indication of the standard.

Our selection panel reviews all the entries and decides on the longlist, the finalists and the awards.

Sketch for Survival Junior Artist of the Year will be awarded in each of the three age categories.

In addition, our panel will award Sketch for Survival Junior School of the Year to one UK school and one International school.

Winners receive a certificate.




We do not cover the cost of postage for those artists selected for the longlist.

We do not cover the cost of printing if your artwork is a digital piece. If you are selected for the longlist, you are responsible for printing your artwork, signing it and sending it to us.

No artwork is returned.

It is a good idea to take a scan of your artwork before you send it to us so you have a record of your work.

Sketch For Survival Junior 2024: Full Terms and Conditions:

  1. The competition is open to artists worldwide who qualify for the age categories (i.e. 16 or under) except for employees of the Real World Conservation Trust (RWCT), their immediate families, agents, or anyone else associated with administration of this competition.
  2. Closing date for receipt of entries is midnight GMT on 30 June 2024.
  3. To enter, complete the online submission form by the closing date. Do not post/mail your artwork to us.
  4. Artists selected by the judges will be contacted by Thursday 4 July with details of how to send/mail their artworks to us for the second round of judging. Failure to forward the original artwork to us will result in elimination from the competition.
  5. The shortlists will be announced on Thursday 19 September. Winners will be announced at our Awards night in London on 14 November.
  6. The RWCT has the right to publish all entries on its website explorersagainstextinction.co.uk and selected ones on its Social Media channels.
  7. The RWCT reserves the right to publish images of shortlisted artworks in other promotional material associated with the campaign. Artworks will not be reproduced elsewhere without permission.
  8. The RWCT will sell the shortlisted artwork through its gallery, online gallery and online auction. All receipts from this art will go to the Explorers Against Extinction Project Fund, supporting frontline conservation Worldwide.
  9. Entries limited to one per artist.
  10. E-mail addresses will only be used by RWCT for updates on the competition in their newsletter which can be opted out of. They will not be disclosed to any other parties.
  11. The judge’s decision is final, and no correspondence will be entered into.
  12. The winner agrees to participate in any reasonable publicity required by the RWCT.

Promoter:    The Real World Conservation Trust. UK Charity 1177505. Registered Address: Happisburgh, Norwich, Norfolk, NR12 0QQ