2021 Saving Endangered Species Youth Art Contest
The Endangered Species Coalition (ESC) is pleased to announce our 2021 Saving Endangered Species Youth Art Contest, which is open to K-12 grade students—residing in the U.S.–including those who are homeschooled or belong to a youth/art program. The contest is an integral part of the 16th annual Endangered Species Day, Friday May 21st, 2021. These are the primary goals of the Saving Endangered Species Youth Art Contest:
-Encouraging and inspiring youth to creatively express animal and plant diversity;
-Spotlighting the incredible skill and talent of youth artists and providing a space for young people to express the importance of wildlife through visual art;
-Growing awareness of the rich diversity of species in the United States or US Territories, especially species protected or recovered by the Endangered Species Act;
-Inspiring support and empathy for wildlife and increasing actions for animal and plant conservation.For more background on the contest, including the Missing Species Report integrated art and science lesson plan and other resources, please visit www.endangeredspeciesday.org.
To be eligible for the contest, student artwork must depict an animal or plant species listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act; species previously listed under the Act, now delisted; or species proposed for listing. The Endangered Species Youth Art Contest features species living or migrating within the United States and U.S. territories, or within the territorial waters of the U.S. The listed or recovered species include a diverse variety of animals and plants living on land, in freshwater, or in the ocean.
** Please note: every year we receive artworks of species which are non-US species not included in the lists linked to on this page. Those submissions are therefore ineligible, for example, images of pandas, tigers, etc. Please use the helpful lists below to identify eligible plants and animals which are currently listed as threatened or endangered by the Endangered Species Act, delisted species, .
Eligible species can be found on these pages:
LISTED species living or migrating within the United States and U.S. territories, or within the territorial waters of the U.S.:
DELISTED species living or migrating within the United States and U.S. territories, or within the territorial waters of the U.S.:
PROPOSED FOR LISTING species living or migrating within the United States and U.S. territories, or within the territorial waters of the U.S.:
- Students’ artwork must be original. Computer-generated images and traced images will not be judged. It is critical that submitted artwork not be overly derivative of images found on the Internet, in print media, or elsewhere. To avoid copyright infringement, works thought to be copies will be disqualified as will work which has been traced. Computer-generated images are currently ineligible.
- Students participating in the contest should compose their chosen threatened/endangered species on an 8 ½ x 11 or smaller surface.
- Media: We can accept artwork done in crayon, ink, acrylics, oil paint, pastels, water color, colored pencils, scratchboard, color marker, chalk, pastels, charcoal, or paper collage. We cannot accept artwork done using plain black pencil or weak colored pencil.
- No lettering, words, signatures or any other markings may appear on the front of the artwork. This includes labeling the depicted species, writing one’s name, or a signature. Lettering that is creatively incorporated into the art (such as a posted sign) is allowed. Submissions that include prohibited writing will not be judged.
- To ensure the image submitted best represents the artwork, please provide a high quality representation (scan or photograph) of the work only. Please avoid including distracting backgrounds which detract from the actual artwork, such as a hand holding the art, the room behind the art work or a frame/mat around the work. Please orient the image in the direction the artwork should be viewed (i.e. not upside down, at a 90 degree angle, etc.) Please note: ESC cannot accept physical artworks – online submissions only.
- All artwork becomes the property of the Endangered Species Coalition. Submission of the artwork grants the Endangered Species Coalition a non-exclusive, irrevocable, royalty-free license to publish your student’s/child’s artwork in Endangered Species Coalition’s editorial, educational, and promotional print and digital materials, in our promotional and educational posts to social media, and for all other lawful uses—including artwork print sales—in furtherance of the Coalition’s mission. All published artwork will be credited with a copyright notice in the following form: “© Artist’s Name.”
- Artwork should be submitted electronically at www.endangered.org/submit-your-art. It must be at least 3000 pixels on one side of the image file.
- Follow directions carefully and provide all information requested on the submission form.
- You must submit your artwork by March 1, 2021. Late entries will not be judged.
A prestigious panel of judges will select contest winners for the following awards: Grand Prize, First Place, and Grade Level winners. The Grade Level winners will be judged and categorized in four groups: Grades K-2, Grades 3-5, Grades 6-8, and Grades 9-12. The art will be judged on four primary artistic elements:
- Concept: How well does the work relate to the endangered species theme?
- Composition: How well do the elements of line and form work together?
- Color: How does color enhance the artwork?
- Expression: How imaginatively does the work convey an idea or emotion?
Endangered Species Coalition will announce the 2021 contest prizes soon! Please check back for the announcement of our new prize structure.
Additionally, judges pay particular attention to the concept or story that the artwork tells. We encourage artists to pay attention to the theme, saving species. You can see examples of previous year’s contest winners here.
The Endangered Species Coalition is enthusiastic to announce a new set of awards for the 2021 contest! We have all new prizes for student artists, including an entirely new prize category, for a total of six student artist awards. We’re also pleased to offer teachers whose students have won one of the six prizes teacher awards this year. The awards were created with the intention of increasing student access to high-quality art materials in the classroom, and recognizing teachers for their hard work in supporting the contest. The educator who instructed the student in creating the work submitted to the contest will be eligible for the award.
Please see the following for the full breakdown of awards and prize categories:
Grand Prize Winner
Description: The Grand Prize is the top award in the Saving Endangered Species Youth Art Contest, and recognizes artworks of special storytelling merit, technical quality, imagination, and skill. All eligible artworks K-12 students submit to the art contest are considered for this award.
Award Package for student artist:
– $200.00 Blick gift certificate for art supplies of the student’s choice.
– A virtual art lesson by a renown arts professional
– $300 in funding toward the purchase of native plants for pollinators, from Endangered Species Coalition’s Pollinator Protectors campaign. Prize winner (along with parent/guardian) will collaborate with ESC’s Creative Engagement Director and other appropriate staff, to identify a planting site/s in the Grand Prize Winner’s city, state or region. ESC will also provide logistical and ecological information for a successful planting.
–$50 gift certificate toward tickets to the student artist’s favorite museum of art, natural history, science and technology, or culture.
– Recognition on the ESC website and press release recognizing the student as the art contest Grand Prize Winner.
Award for student’s teacher:
$200.00 Blick gift certificate toward the purchase of art supplies for the teacher’s classroom.
First Prize (new award category for 2021!)
Description: The First Place winner is recognized for the outstanding quality of their work across grade categories. All eligible artworks K-12 students submit to the art contest are considered for this award.
Award for student artist: The First Prize Winner will receive a $100.00 Blick gift certificate for the art supplies of their choice.
Award for student’s teacher:
$100.00 Blick gift certificate toward the purchase of art supplies for the teacher’s classroom.
Grade Level Winners:
Description: This award recognizes an outstanding work in each of the grade level categories. The grade level winners are awarded to one student each in the four grade categories K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12, for a total of four awards. All eligible artworks submitted to the art contest are considered for this award, by grade category.
Award for student artist: Each of the four students recognized as grade level winners (one each from K-2, 3-5, 6-8 and 9-12) will be awarded with a $50.00 Blick gift certificate for the art supplies of their choice for a total of four awards at $50.00 each.
Award for student’s teacher: Each of the four teachers whose students are recognized as grade level winners (one student each from K-2, 3-5, 6-8 and 9-12) will be awarded with a $50.00 Blick gift certificate for the art supplies of their choice, for use in their classrooms. In the event that more than one student from an individual teacher receives a grade level award, that teacher will receive a gift card in honor of each student’s accomplishment.
40 total semi-finalists, 10 from each of the grade categories K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12, who have submitted eligible work, will be chosen by a jury panel of diverse arts professionals. From this group of artists, the Grand Prize and First Place winners will be selected by a separate panel of nationally recognized arts professionals.
Award for student artists:
– A digital, personalized certificate, recognizing the student artist’s accomplishment and semi-finalist status.
– A yearly planner, featuring the work of the semi-finalists (usually sent out in Dec. of the contest year).
– Recognition on the ESC website, Flickr, and press release as the art contest semi-finalists.
All students grades K-12 who submit artworks meeting contest eligibility criteria as described on this page are considered contest entrants.
Award for student artists:
-A downloadable certificate recognizing students as contest contestants and thanking them for their creativity and support for species conservation.
Endangered Species Coalition
The Endangered Species Coalition is a national network of hundreds of conservation, scientific, education, religious, sporting, outdoor recreation, humane, business and community groups across the country. Through public education, scientific information and citizen participation, we work to protect our nation’s wildlife and wild places. The Endangered Species Coalition is a non-profit, non-partisan coalition working with concerned citizens and decision-makers to protect endangered species and habitat. www.endangered.org