The World Illustration Awards are the most prestigious annual juried competition open to illustrators from all over the world.

The Awards are delivered by the AOI in partnership with USA-based Directory of Illustration, building on a 40-year tradition of the AOI organising juried survey competitions.

Entries can be made into one of the eight categories that represent the work being commissioned by the illustration industry today. All entries are reviewed by judges working in the global illustration industry at the forefront of their specialist sectors.

The World Illustration Awards are respected by illustrators, commissioners and agents alike, offering a comprehensive insight into the ideas, trends and techniques that are at the forefront of illustration today.

“The WIA is a remarkable award that offers so many established and up-and-coming illustrators the invaluable opportunity to have their work exhibited publicly. We look forward to seeing the huge variety of high-quality illustration presented at this year’s awards.” – Deirdre McDermott, Picture Books Publisher and Creative Director at Walker Books

View previous winners and shortlisted illustrators here.

Deadline extended to 17 February 2019.

Why enter the 2019 Awards?

“Winning these awards means a great deal… it’s a real honour to have been chosen. Experiences like winning at the World Illustration Awards reassures me that I did the right thing quitting my day job and going full time when I did!” – Stevie Gee, Overall Professional Winner 2018

Illustrators, commissioners, agents and tutors are invited to submit work created or published since January 2018 until the deadline into the eight categories of the Awards.Each category will be judged by a panel of international experts.

This year, all 200 shortlisted illustrators will

• Feature on the AOI website on a dedicated page, with selected projects promoted across the AOI’s social media at entry stage
Be featured in a printed full colour catalogue, which is distributed to over 1,300 commissioners worldwide and you’ll receive a complimentary copy
• Feature in a major exhibition in central London.
• Be invited to attend the Awards Evening in July, a highlight of the illustration industry event calendar.
• Be offered an exclusive discount on AOI membership with Folio for one year.

Receive incredible exposure across our digital and real-world networks: the WIA is a proven platform for illustrators to consolidate and expand networks.

Enter to be in with a chance to win some fantastic prizes

• Overall Professional Winner: One of the eight Professional Category Winners is named as the WIA2019 Overall Professional Winner. They will win a generous cash prize of £2,000, and a two-page marketing package in the Directory of Illustration No. 36, valued at $4,330 US Dollars, including a 100-image professional portfolio on

• Overall New Talent Winner: One of the eight New Talent Category Winners is named as the WIA2019 Overall New Talent Winner. They will win a generous cash prize £1,000, and a copy of the Directory of Illustration No. 36.

• Professional and New Talent Category Winners: All 16 Category Winners (one New Talent and one Professional per category) receive a WIA Trophy, an enhanced entry in the catalogue, a profile feature on the AOI website, and a complimentary AOI membership for one year with all the benefits this brings including business advice, discounted online portfolio and Varoom subscription.

New for 2019

Professional and New Talent Highly Commended in each category: 16 Highly Commended Projects (one New Talent and one Professional per category) will receive a WIA Certificate.

AOI Member Award: Selected from any AOI member shortlisted for the WIA2019. The winner will receive a complimentary year-long membership plus folio, a copy of the Guide to Law and the current Directories, worth £296.95, a WIA Certificate and profile feature on the AOI website.

SAA (Society of Artists Agents) Agents Award for New Talent: All shortlisted New Talent entries will be eligible for the SAA Agents Award for New Talent, offering the winner a six. month trial representation with one of the leading SAA Illustration agents, which will include mentoring and career development. During that time, the winner will also benefit from having their work showcased on the SAA’s website and across their social media platforms. The winner will also be presented with a WIA certificate and profile feature on the AOI website.

DI (Directory of Illustration) Award: The DI Award winner will receive a single page marketing package in the Directory of Illustration No. 36, valued at $2,695 US Dollars. The program includes a 100-image professional portfolio on plus a one-on-one consultation with a professional Directory of Illustration marketing consultant on how to best present your work to the American market. The winner will also be presented with a WIA certificate and profile feature on the AOI website.

All Award-Winning and Highly Commended projects will feature in a UK-wide touring exhibition and receive a digital badge for their website.

So, what are you waiting for? Enter your best work today and we’ll promote selected entries across our networks as they come in! Extended deadline is 17 February 2019

Entry Fees

Entry fees can be paid in three currencies: GB Pounds (£), US Dollars ($) and Euros (€). Any other currency will be converted by your card issuer at point of payment.

The entry fees are:
£25 (GBP) per Single Entry // £45 (GBP) per Multiple Entry (inclusive of VAT)
30 (EURO) per Single Entry // €54 (EURO) per Multiple Entry (inclusive of VAT)
$33 (USD) per Single Entry // $60 (USD) per Multiple Entry

Current individual AOI Members (or corporate members entering their artists at time of payment) automatically receive a 20% discount on their entries. Find out more about how to become an AOI member here.

Please check the Terms and Conditions before you enter

More information and the submission form can be found here on the AOI website:

Best of luck!

Approximate timeline

• Call for Entries open from 21 November 2018 until 17 February 2019 (end of calendar day wherever you are)
• Judging: March 2019
• Entry Notifications sent out: April/May 2019
• Shortlisted Materials to be submitted by: May 2019
• Exhibition: 11 – 28 July 2019 at Somerset House, London

Our 40-year Awards History

The AOI first ran an annual competition, called Images, in 1975 that was open to any British Illustrator. It was unique then, as the selection for the publication was made by a jury, selecting the best contemporary submissions each year to be published in the annual. In 2012, Images was replaced by the AOI Illustration Awards. These ran for 2 years, before The AOI formed a partnership with the Directory of Illustration in the USA and created the World Illustration Awards in 2015.

Previous Images annuals can be purchased here


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