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Top 5 Tips for Competition Submissions!

I hope you’re working on your entries for the Firefly Press White Petals competition!
I have put together some advice on making your artwork as effective as possible, ready for your submission.
Have a look at my Top 5 Tips below:



Get to know the book synopsis, the author biog, the opening chapter. Know your subject and make it your focus material to give yourself the best chance of creating the best artwork for your submission!


We’re not looking for perfect artists. We want creative innovators who think for themselves and are able to come up with their own unique interpretations of the reading material that they have for the competition.


Don’t be afraid to be different. The novel’s protagonist, Emmeline, is very different from her friends. She has different skills and talents to most other people, but that’s what makes her so great! Follow in Emmeline’s footsteps and embrace your own originality. Be bold with your art!


Be clear and concise with your submissions. Make sure you know what your illustration represents, and why you’ve decided to submit that particular illustration. If you don’t know what your artwork symbolises, the judges won’t know either!


Plan: Look at the specs of the illustration requirement, and make sure your illustrations fit the requirements. Know your subject and the reading material. Know the closing date for submissions.
Practice: Practice Makes Perfect! Keep practicing your illustrations until you think they are at the best standard that you can achieve before you submit .
Present: Present your illustrations clearly, in black and white, to the correct size requirement, and in a way that will grab the attention of the judges.


So, there are my Top 5 Tips for your illustration submissions. Now, it’s time to put them to use!


Good Luck!

Join the discussion 16 Comments

  • Elis says:

    What kind of thing should I draw? I was thinking of drawing a rose, but a rose is really difficult to do! But I can’t think of what else to do. Have you got any advice please?

    • Maria Grace says:

      Hi Elis,
      You’re right – a rose is really difficult to draw, but I’m sure you’d smash it if you put your mind to it!
      If you don’t want to draw a rose, then why don’t you try drawing something else that sticks in your mind from chapter one? If you haven’t read it already, you can read it on the White Petals page on my website.
      Some ideas from some of the entries we’ve had so far:
      Car and suitcase to symbolise Emmeline leaving home.
      Broken glass.
      Rose/ rosebush.
      Images to represent the emotions you think Emmeline would be feeling in the opening chapter.

      Whatever you draw, I’m sure you’ll do a great job! Have faith in yourself 🙂

      • Elis says:

        Thank you for all your help everyone! 🙂
        I think I’m going to try to draw a path with broken glass on it, and maybe a car and suitacse like Maria sugested.
        Thanks for your advise x

    • Sam says:

      I did a lion for mine. Because of the lion story that the grandmother tells Freya in chapter one.

    • Chloe says:

      Elis, I drew a rose for my first one and then I drew an eye with a tear for my second one.
      Hope that helps!

  • Keeley says:

    I can’t WAIT to read the rest of this book!!!!!! I submitted my illustration for the comp. It’s not very good though! lol
    I’m looking forward to buying a copy when the book is out. I already love emmeline <3

    • Maria Grace says:

      Thank you so much, Keeley! It makes me smile to know that you’ve enjoyed what you’ve read so far. I hope you like the rest of the book once it’s been released. And I’m glad that you love Emmeline! I’m very happy to hear that 😀
      Good luck with the competition. I’m sure your illustration is great!

  • Keeley says:

    Your welcome Maria! <3 xx
    Good luck with white petals! I really do love the first chapter and i can't wait to read the rest when the book comes out in June. My mother is buying me one for my 14th birthday 😀

  • Lowri says:

    I have sent my entry off to the firefly email address.
    Fingers crossed!! 😀

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