14 Fun Art Competitions & Contests for Kids - Create & Learn (2024)

Art competitions for kids can be great motivation for students to create and showcase their best work. The contests and themes vary from general to thematic, such as NASA or conservation. Winners are recognized on a national or global stage. In some cases, young artists will even receive a scholarship or cash prize for their creativity! To brush up on your art skills before competing and to get creative ideas, explore online art camps and live online art classes informed by a curriculum designed by Google, Stanford, and MIT professionals.

Students in Grades 1-4 can learn digital art concepts, including how to create their own comics, with live expert instruction in Budding Digital Artist.

Students in Grades 3-6 can learn how to create stunning graphic designs such as posters and presentations, and even edit cool videos in Create with Canva.

Beginners in Grades 5-12 can learn cutting-edge technology and have fun making cool AI art in AI Art for Kids. And they can also design beautiful websites using Wix in Modern Website Design.

Discover online art competitions for students

Art organizations and charitable foundations offer art competitions to engage students in the arts and to promote education about their mission. Whether students win or not, they benefit from a boost in self-confidence as an artist whose work deserves to be seen by others. Students are challenged to solve a specific artistic problem and grow in their process, and they reflect on their work as they get feedback from judges.

When picking an art competition to enter, be mindful of deadlines, guidelines the artwork should follow, and check if there are any entry fees. This list includes free or scholarship-based entries only for artists ages 2-18. Good luck and happy creating!

Drawing competitions for kids

To start, here are the details on annual drawing competitions that draw inspiration from songbirds to space exploration.

1. Commercial Crew 2023 Artwork Contest

NASA's Commercial Crew Program is holding its annual competition inviting kids ages 4-12 to submit artwork to be featured in their 2023 Commercial Crew Program Children's Artwork Calendar. First, second, and third place artwork will be picked from the age groups 4-6, 7-9, and 10-12 per each of the four themes. The themes for this year's contest are Rockets and Spacecraft, Living and Working in Space, Exploring the Solar System, Astronauts. Entries will be judged on originality and theme

Dates: Now through October 27, 2022

Prize: Feature in NASA's Commerical Crew Program Children's Artwork Calendar

Ages: 4-12

2. NASA Langley Student Art Contest

Ready to explore the last frontier? NASA asks students to find inspiration from space flight, earth science, STEM fields, and NASA Missions to create an original print or digital artwork. Entries are judged based on their communication of the theme, creative techniques, and composition. Winners are selected from each grade level to be featured in a gallery.

Dates: Annually in December

Prize: Certificate and NASA Swag Package

Ages: Grades K-12

3. Art of Conservation Songbird Art Contest

Hosted by Wildlife Forever, the Songbird Art Contest aims to share the wonder and diversity of North American songbirds. Students submit a drawing and creative writing essay about a species from the Official Songbird List, then research and record field notes to learn more about their species. Entries are judged by age group and in Creativity and Technique categories.

Dates: Annually in November

Prize: Featured on Songbird Website & Social

Ages: Grades K-12

4. Celebrating Art Contest

Celebrating Art has three free art contests each year. With multiple categories, students can enter their best work of drawing, painting, collage, or computer graphics. About forty-five percent of student art is accepted to be published in the annual art anthology. In addition, winning students earn their teachers free classroom supplies!

Dates: Annually in Spring, Summer, and Fall

Prize: Publication, $25 gift card and free book

Ages: Grades K-12

5. SIGGRAPH SpaceTime Student Exhibition

In support of computer graphics in education, SIGGRAPH offers a themed poster contest each year centered around a chosen theme. Student winners who create a computer-based media creative work have the opportunity to exhibit their work nationally and internationally. The theme for 2022 was “Shaping our future and evolving together.”

Dates: Annually in May

Prize: Participation in International online exhibition

Ages: High School & College

6. JQA International Environmental Drawing Contest

JQA has been around since 1999 with this art contest that receives entries from students in over 80 countries. The 2022 theme, “Choosing Eco Friendly Lifestyles,” asks students to think about how we can live lightly on the planet. Entries can be drawing, paint, pastel, or any other 2D medium.

Dates: Annually in May

Prize: Special memorabilia and participation prize

Ages: 7-15

7. K12 National Art Competition

For this fun competition you can create a 2D physical work of art in the art medium of your choice. Possible mediums include painting, drawings, collages, and prints. There is no official theme for the 2023 K12 National Art Competition - so you can create anything you can imagine. Submissions will be judged on creativity and originality, quality and execution, and overall impression.

Dates: Now through January 31st, 2023

Prize: Some of the prizes offered are Microsoft Surface tablets, virtual art lessons, and in-person experiences at Savannah College of Art and Design!

Ages: K-12 grades

8. ActivityHero's Amazing Activities Art Contest

ActivityHero is celebrating creativity and showcasing inspirational artwork from young artists. Winning artwork will be featured on the ActivityHero home page, social and receive (amazing!) prizes. 3 age groups from 4-17. The theme in 2022 is "If I were a superhero, I would..."

Dates: Annually in July/August

Prize: Amazon gift card, ActivityHero gift card and swag bag

Ages: 4-17

Art contests for kids with cash prizes

In addition to the recognition of a job well done, the following art contests also offer scholarship and cash prizes for student artwork.

9. U.S. Kids Magazine's Cover Contest

U.S. Kids calls on young artists each year to illustrate a cover for their magazines based on a theme. The theme this year is “What pets do when their humans are out.” In addition to getting a cash prize, the winner is featured on the cover of Jack and Jill or Humpty Dumpty Magazine.

Dates: February 1, 2023

Prize: 1st - $500; 2nd - $250.00; 3rd - $100.00

Ages: 2-12

10. Doodle for Google

You know how the Google homepage logo changes for different holidays? Your young artist’s entry could be just that! Students submit a drawing of the Google logo based on a different theme each year. In addition to the prize package, the winner will have their Google logo displayed on the Google homepage for a day. Entries are judged on artistic merit, creativity, and theme communication.

Dates: Annually in March

Prize: $30,000 college scholarship and a $50,000 technology package for their school/non-profit organization

Ages: Grades K-12

11. Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

This long-running contest has 28 different categories for teens to submit their art entries, including comic art, digital art, drawing, and more. Notable alumni that have won the Scholastic awards include Joyce Carol Oates, Andy Warhol, and inaugural poet Amanda Gorman! Art entries are evaluated on originality, technical skill, and personal voice. The entry fee of $7 per work can be waived with a scholarship form.

Dates: Annual Deadlines in September - December

Prize: Scholarships ranging from $1,000 to $10,000 + national recognition and exhibition

Ages: Grades 7-12

12. Science Without Borders Art Challenge

Students from around the world participate in the Science Without Borders Challenge each year to promote ocean conservation through art. The theme for 2022 was “Ridge to Reef,” focusing on actions people can take to protect fragile coral reef ecosystems. Painting or drawing entries are judged based on theme, artistic merit, creativity, and visual impact.

Dates: Annually in March

Prize: 1st - $500; 2nd - $250.00; 3rd - $100.00

Ages: 11-19

13. Toyota Dream Car USA Art Contest

Each year Toyota invites students to dream about how they would like to get around in the future in their Dream Car Contest. Students draw or paint anything they can imagine for their dream car - one of last year’s winners was a Giraffe car that delivers groceries to high-rise apartments. Entries are judged on concept, uniqueness, and artistry.

Dates: Annually in January

Prize: 1st - $750; 2nd - $500; 3rd - $250

Ages: 4-15

14. ShinHan Postcard Art Contest

ShinHan invites students around the world to work on a smaller scale to paint a postcard around a theme each year. For 2022, “A New Appreciation: Back to Normal” has students ponder what they are grateful for coming out of pandemic lockdowns. Winners are displayed in an online gallery and receive a range of cash prizes.

Dates: Annually in May

Prize: Cash prizes from $100 - $1,000 and Shinhan watercolor set

Ages: 4-18

Enter art competitions for kids

Art competitions can be an excellent, focused way to get students of all ages creating and sharing their artwork with the world. Keep an eye on the calendar because most competitions return each year. Maybe we will see your art on the Google homepage or in NASA’s art gallery someday! Up next, check out fun STEM contests.

If you’re looking to engage your child in fun classes with a live teacher while developing their artistic skills, check out online Create & Learn art and design classes including:

Power of Color - Learn how to combine colors to create moods, effects, understanding, and meaning. Color makes your artwork shine!

- Learn to use this intuitive graphic design tool to create flyers, cards, posters, and videos.

Annie Schmitt is a Computer Science Teacher and Teaching Artist from Pennsylvania. She loves using art, technology, and science together to create exploratory hands-on learning experiences for students in grade K-12. As a Teaching Artist, she travels to schools and organizations in her state to teach children stop-motion animation, game design, and visual outdoor art. Annie has taught thousands of students from states all over the U.S. and countries around the world.

14 Fun Art Competitions & Contests for Kids - Create & Learn (2024)


Are there art competitions for kids? ›

Children Art Contest, organized by APA Family Support Services, will start from February 12 to March 31, 2024! Contestants will be divided into three groups based on age, from 4 to 16 (see details in Eligibility below). Winners will be notified by email in May 2024.

What is the art contest for kids in 2024? ›

Stride-K12 Art Competition

The 2024 K12 Art Competition invites students across the country in grades K–12 to unleash their creativity, unveil their artistic talent, and explore new mediums for a share of $20,000 worth of prizes! This competition is proudly hosted by Stride K12, a leader in online education.

How do you make an art contest? ›

Step-by-Step Walkthrough
  1. Gather submissions.
  2. Create the contest.
  3. Flesh out the descriptions.
  4. Place onto your site (optional)
  5. Promote to voters.
  6. Calculate the results.
  7. Announce the winners.
  8. Prepare for next time.

What is the best topic of art competition? ›

The primary goal of this competition is to encourage creativity, educate students on the chosen theme, and promote a passion for art among the students.
  • Our Precious Planet Earth.
  • Weather Wonders: From Rainbows to Storms.
  • Life in the Ocean Depths.
  • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: The three R's.

What is creative arts for kids? ›

Creative arts are activities that actively engage chil- dren's imagination through art, dance, dramatic play or theater, puppetry, and music. The creative arts engage children across all domains—cognitive, lan- guage, social, emotional, and physical.

How do I create my own contest? ›

  1. Step 1: Set a Goal. ...
  2. Step 2: Decide on a Prize. ...
  3. Step 3: Build Your Contest. ...
  4. Step 4: Create a Promotion Plan. ...
  5. Step 5: Test and Publish Your Contest. ...
  6. Step 6: Use Email Autoresponders to Contact All Entrants. ...
  7. Step 7: Measure and Analyze the Results of your Contest. ...
  8. Step 8: Make a Plan to Leverage the Data.

How do you create an art event? ›

Organising your own art exhibition involves many steps. Clarify your purpose, set a budget and choose a suitable venue. Create a great promotional plan, invest in professional display materials, leverage your network for support and collaborations and plan memorable ways to engage your audience.

How do you get creative art ideas? ›

Here are eight of the most common sources of inspiration:
  1. Visit an art museum or gallery. ...
  2. Look through art books. ...
  3. Staring at people and sketching them from life. ...
  4. Look at work from different cultures or time-periods. ...
  5. Get out of the studio. ...
  6. Critique. ...
  7. Looking back at old work. ...
  8. Connecting with other artists in your community.
Mar 27, 2022

What can a 7 year old draw? ›

What can a seven-year-old draw? There are easy drawing ideas for kids of all ages, some easy drawing ideas for seven-year-olds include animals like puppies and kittens, favorite cartoon characters, easy landscapes, and simple self-portraits.

How can I make my art class interesting? ›

Start with mini art challenges where the focus is on the experimentation and creative process instead of the end product. Focus on building skills with directed drawings for the first project or as a when-you're-done. Make them play-based and fun. Pick projects that you know everyone will be able to achieve.

How do I get my child into art? ›

Provide materials.

Encourage your child's interest in art by providing materials and a place to create art. Crayons, modeling clay, scraps of yarn and fabric, different kinds of paper and found objects such as shells, twigs, buttons can be used to help your children make their own art.

What age can kids do art? ›

In summary, while there is no specific age that is ideal for all children to start learning art, it's generally recommended to start at age 3 or 4 and continue throughout childhood, as they will continue to develop their artistic skills and abilities.

What is performance art for kids? ›

Performance art can be many different things, but it normally means that an artist uses their body as their paint and canvas. Performances can be planned or random. Artists can perform to the camera, to an audience or in a public space. It can be a bit unexpected and unusual but it should make you think!

What age is creative kids for? ›

aged between 4.5 and 18 years.

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Manual Maggio

Last Updated:

Views: 6557

Rating: 4.9 / 5 (49 voted)

Reviews: 88% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Manual Maggio

Birthday: 1998-01-20

Address: 359 Kelvin Stream, Lake Eldonview, MT 33517-1242

Phone: +577037762465

Job: Product Hospitality Supervisor

Hobby: Gardening, Web surfing, Video gaming, Amateur radio, Flag Football, Reading, Table tennis

Introduction: My name is Manual Maggio, I am a thankful, tender, adventurous, delightful, fantastic, proud, graceful person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.