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Future Creatives Arts Festival Competition 2022

Student artwork by Ellie Wynde
  • Written byCarys Thomas
  • Published date 28 September 2022
Student artwork by Ellie Wynde
Ellie Wynde with her winning competition entry at the Hill View Primary Arts Festival: July 2022

Did you know that more than 40,000 species are endangered across the world?

Many animals are endangered because their homes are being destroyed, so it is essential that we act in order to protect their natural habitats. Find out more about endangered animals and plants through the Iucun Red List.

To raise awareness of the growing number of endangered species, we launched a creative arts competition at the Hill View Primary Arts Festival in July. We asked students to choose an endangered species and create an imaginative piece to portray it.

We received a fantastic range of submissions which made the task of choosing our winner very difficult! Our final choice was 9-year-old Ellie Wynde from Slade Primary School, who submitted a unique piece inspired by the macaw parrot.

We caught up with Ellie to find out more out more about the inspiration behind her brilliant work.

I have always enjoyed art and being creative. From an early age I have loved art and it's my favourite subject at school.  

— Ellie Wynde, Future Creatives Student

Finding inspiration

Ellie recalls a love for art and design from a young age and enjoys taking art classes in her hometown of Tonbridge. “I’ve always enjoyed art and being creative,” she tells us, “from an early age I have loved art and it’s my favourite subject at school. Once a week I go to a local art class and I also enjoy attending a musical theatre school.”

Ellie often finds design inspiration online and enjoys following artists on YouTube. “I am inspired by my favourite YouTubers,” she says, “at the moment I really like Moriah Elizabeth because she is really creative and very experimental. She likes to try lots of different techniques and doesn't give up if something isn't working at first.”

The natural world is also an important source of inspiration for Ellie, who loves nature and is currently working on a piece inspired by the coast. “I am working on a piece around seashells and the beach,” she says, “it is called ‘Summer beachcombing’”.

Exploring new approaches

Ellie particularly enjoys experimenting with different techniques and approaches, and has had the chance to take part in lots of exciting creative projects during the summer holidays.

“I enjoy working with textiles but I also do a lot of drawing,” says Ellie, “this summer we went to the Tate Modern and I got to take part in creating a piece of art by sticking coloured labels in rooms that had been all white. You could put stickers everywhere and it looked amazing.”

The chance to experiment with new ideas on the future creatives course has been helpful for Ellie, who found she quickly discovered new ways to explore her creativity. “I’ve really enjoyed the course,” she says. “It gives you a lot of creative freedom in what you can do and you have access to a lot of art supplies so you can properly experiment with what you want to do.”

“On the course you can learn to be more creative in so many ways,” says Ellie. “I want to go again at half term!”

Discovering printmaking

During the course, Ellie took part in a printmaking workshop and had the opportunity to learn more about the craft. “I learnt how to do printing which I didn’t know how to do before and I love it,” she says.

“Learning about printing was an amazing experience,” says Ellie. “It was just so much fun and you could be really creative with what you could do with it.”

“There are a lot of things that I learnt that will be very useful if I become an artist one day,” Ellie tells us. “Antonia (course tutor) showed us work by an artist who had taken regular stones and created sculptures, which I found really cool.”

Student artwork by Ellie Wynde
Student artwork by Ellie Wynde

Ellie's winning entry

Ellie’s unique winning entry was inspired by the macaw parrot, a colourful endangered bird that typically inhabits rainforests. “I wanted to focus on a bird, so we looked for birds that are in danger of being extinct on Google and I choose to do a macaw,” she explains.

“I sketched the outline of the bird and then cut up lots of small bits of different coloured paper to create its wings and body. It took a long time - over four days - but I was really happy with the finished artwork.”

Ellie was keen for her artwork to be made from recycled materials and was inspired by work that she had seen on display at Tonbridge castle. “I’d seen an artist exhibiting her work at Tonbridge Castle and she had used bits of magazines to create pictures of animals. I knew I wanted to do something like that.”

Ellie also found inspiration for her design on Pinterest, and created a vibrant collage out of old magazine cuttings for her final piece.

Are you interested in our art classes for kids and teenagers? Find out why it’s never too early to start making art with our art classes for kids and teenagers.

Our Future Creatives art classes run multiple times a year after school, on Saturdays, during school holidays and online. Students learn from our friendly and experienced teachers who provide fun and engaging courses on a range of subjects, from drawing and graphics to sculpture and screen printing.

Take a look at our Future Creatives Short Courses to see what’s coming up in your local area.

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