Please contact the Contest Coordinator at with any questions. We love your feedback!

The Art Contest has closed. Check back in late fall for next contest!

Art Contest Guidelines

Submission Dates: December 1st–February 1st
Entries must be postmarked on or before February 1st.


  • Each student (ages 7-19) may enter up to 2 pieces of art.
  • Completely original hand-done artwork.  No tracing, photography, or computer-generated artwork.
  • Both wet and dry mediums are welcome.
  • You may look at photographs or other art for ideas, but do not copy them.  We want to see your creativity at work! 
  • Flat, two-dimensional artwork less than ¼” thick (not including mat or frame).  This means no sculpture or other 3D aspects.
  • Maximum size including matting and framing is 48” x 48”.  There is no minimum size.


  • Once your artwork is completed, take a good picture of it—this is what you will enter!  We recommend reading this short article to learn more about how to photograph your artwork in a way that presents it well.
  • Type the student’s Entry ID on the top of each page. This number will be found on your Entry Form Confirmation message. NO OTHER identification should appear on these pages, to ensure the judging is anonymous.
  • Mail us an 8”x10” or 8½”x11” color photograph or digital print of your artwork with your entry fee. Do NOT send the original artwork for the preliminary round, as these entries will NOT be returned.

If your artwork is selected as a finalist, you will be asked to mail us the framed original. We will send you detailed instructed on how to submit your artwork for the final round. Instructions will include:

  • All work must be framed with a simple and lightweight matte and/or frame and have wire or other hanging hardware attached.
  • It is HIGHLY recommended that entrants use plexi-glass rather than glass in the framing. We have received damaged artwork from glass shattering in the mail. HSLDA cannot be held responsible for artwork damaged during shipment.

Entry Fees and Forms:

To enter, fill out the Entry Form on the Enter the Contest page. Each student may enter up to 2 pieces of art. Each piece requires a separate Entry Fee and Entry Form. Multiple entries may be mailed in the same envelope and the multiple entry fees may be included on one check.

Regular Entry Fee $15.00 per entry
HSLDA Member Discounted Entry Fee $10.00 per entry

Please pay via check or money order made payable to "HSLDA" with a note of "Art Contest" in the memo line.  Foreign checks not accepted.  Contact the Contest Coordinator if you have any questions regarding payment:

Mail Artwork and Entry Fees to:

Attn: Art Contest
PO Box 3000
Purcellville, VA 20134


  • Entries received between December 1st and February 1st.
  • Preliminary judging will take place in February.
  • All participants will be notified by email in February with the names of those selected as finalists.  
  • Finalists will mail framed artwork to HSLDA.
  • Final judging will take place in early April and all finalists will be notified of the results via email.
  • Winners will be announced on HSLDA’s website, e-lert service, and Facebook.
  • All finalist artwork will be hung in the HSLDA office for one year.
  • In March 2017, original artwork will be returned to students.


  • Pieces will be judged on originality, artistry, and adherence to the theme.
  • A panel of judges selected by HSLDA will judge both the preliminary and final rounds.  The judging panel is comprised of local professional and amateur artists with concentrations in watercolors, portraits, landscapes, pastels, sketches, graphic art, and other related fields. For more information, check out Hear It From the Judges.
  • The decision of the judges is final.

Other information:

  • All finalist pieces will be on loan to HSLDA for one year and will be displayed at the HSLDA headquarters in Purcellville, Virginia.  After a year, the artwork will be returned to the artist, much to the sadness of HSLDA employees & visitors.
  • HSLDA has the right to reproduce images of entered artwork at its discretion. Full credit will be given to the artist.
  • All judgments are final and interpretations of the guidelines are at HSLDA’s sole discretion.