Illustration students drawn to Kelpies book prize

Five Edinburgh College students have drawn their way onto the shortlist for city publisher Floris Books’ fifth annual Kelpies Illustration Prize.

The students are among 10 finalists for the children’s book illustration award and hope to follow fellow Edinburgh College Illustration student Aimee Ferrier, who won last year.

To commemorate the centenary of the First World War armistice, entrants were challenged to design a cover for Soldier’s Game by James Killgore. This children’s novel is based on the remarkable true story of Edinburgh’s ‘Hearts Battalion’, officially known as the 16th Royal Scots. This volunteer group of Heart of Midlothian footballers and fans fought together in the Battle of the Somme. It was shortlisted for the Scottish Children’s Book Awards in 2012.

The winner of the Kelpies Illustration Prize will receive a £250 cash prize along with a professional portfolio critique from London-based agency Advocate Art. They may also be offered the chance to work with Floris Books to create the book’s final cover. Up to two Highly Commended entries will also receive a cash prize.

Alongside the overall winner, the Kelpies Illustration Prize People’s Choice Award is decided by public vote. Voters can view the full shortlist and choose their favourite design here. More information on the awards is at

The winner of the Kelpies Illustration Prize 2018 will be announced by renowned author and Edinburgh College of Art lecturer Vivian French on Friday 30 March 2018.

Choose your favourite below and please head to the Kelpies website to vote:

by Laura Villareal

by Natalie Rowland








by Alex Williams

by Ruyana Ruzgar








by Katarzyna Grabowska