Budding young artists from East Lothian are being urged to enter the fourth annual John Byrne National Drawing Competition.

Since the launch of the competition in 2014, thousands of pupils have submitted their artwork to be judged by the renowned artist and playwright John Byrne.

The competition, sponsored by John, in partnership with Education Scotland, launched on 27 November 2017. Children and young people from P4 – S3 are invited to submit a drawing.

The winning artwork will be chosen by John along with a selection panel of judges who will decide upon three winners whose winning pieces will be displayed, along with the drawings of the 30 runners up, as part of a special showcase at Paisley Museum and Art Gallery on Friday 16 March.

John Byrne said: “I’m really excited to launch the fourth year of the annual John Byrne National Drawing Competition and see the creative flair and talent that we have within our schools.

“It’s really important that we give young people opportunities like this to use their imagination and express their creativity and love for drawing. This competition is a great way to showcase their talent and, once again, I look forward to seeing the remarkable variety of entries.”

Last year’s competition winner, Cameron Lawson from Cedarbank School, West Lothian said: “My art teacher encouraged me to enter the competition. I was really surprised when I found out that I’d won but it was great to see my artwork on display.  I would encourage pupils to take part as it’s a great experience.  My advice would be to try your best and use your imagination.”

Ron Cowie, Senior Education Officer at Education Scotland added: “Art and design is an important part of the curriculum and this competition aims to encourage pupils across Scotland to develop their drawing skills and be creative. Education Scotland is proud to be involved in this competition as it is a great way to promote drawing in schools.”

Entries for the John Byrne National Drawing Competition must be submitted by 4pm on 23 February 2018 to be considered for the three main prizes, with the 30 runners-up receiving certificates specially designed by John.

The competition rules and information about submitting entries can be found on the Education Scotland website,

By David Gilmour

Learning Technologist East Lothian Council