Cheerful Community Colouring Book Competition

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It’s time to dust off your paper and pens and get doodling! We at The Cheerful Project are launching an exciting competition to design a beautiful Community Colouring Book with entries judged by renowned colouring book illustrator Millie Marotta!  The fundraising colouring book will debut at the Plant Sale on 29th April and its sale will raise funds to support Span Arts’ continued work in the arts and with the community.

We want you to mine your happy memories and joyful thoughts to come up with an original illustration which reflects your own “Reasons to Be Cheerful”.   We are inviting everyone to have a go and are hoping to get a wide range of people putting ink on paper; whatever your ability, age or address you can enter the competition with a chance to win lots of inspiring prizes including a host of Millie Marotta goodies and tickets to Span Arts comedy or theatre. Plus 40 winners will get to see their work printed in the final book!


Download your entry form plus terms and conditions by clicking on the following link: Cheerful Colouring Book Competition Entry Form

Anyone can enter; all you need to do is draw a black & white image on A4 (portrait orientation) and submit it to Span Arts by 5pm on Friday 31 March. Entries can be posted to the Span Arts building in Narberth or emailed to with a 50p donation per entry to raise money.

TOP TIPS for Creating Colouring Pages:

To help you find your inspiration Millie Marotta has compiled her Top-Tips for colouring book illustration!

  • Choose a subject or theme which you are really interested in. Do you love animals, architecture, plants, mythological creatures? Etc. If you’re passionate about or excited by what you are drawing it will show in your work.
  • Plan your page out in pencil first, making sure you’re happy with the overall shapes and composition before you add too much detail.
  • Once you’re happy with your pencil drawing you can draw in pen over the top of the pencil, which you can then erase afterwards. Or, you can lay a sheet of layout or marker paper over the top of your pencil drawing, which are both just sheer enough to see your original pencil drawing underneath. You can then simply trace your own image in pen.
  • Draw you image with a fine nib pen so that your lines are not too heavy or thick. This makes for a much nicer colouring experience as heavy outlines can feel a bit cumbersome.
  • Create your colouring page using your own natural style of drawing. You don’t have to copy what you see other people doing. Working in your own style is what will make your image unique and stand out from the crowd.
  • Let your imagination loose. While I personally like to take inspiration from our natural world I still enjoy using patterns and textures to build up detail and embellish my illustrations. You don’t have to keep your drawing true to life.

Millie Marotta is one of Britain’s most celebrated illustrators.  Her 2015 debut title, Millie Marotta’s Animal Kingdom, spent a record 22 weeks as the official paperback non-fiction #1, and was Amazon UK’s bestselling book of the year. Millie lives in Tenby, Pembrokeshire and her intricate illustrations are inspired by a love of wildlife and fascination with the natural world.

Millie said “This is a fantastic opportunity for everyone to have a go at drawing with the chance of seeing their work in print!”

Stuck for ideas or need help executing them? You can join The Cheerful Project at our drop-in workshop on 18 March at The Queen’s Hall, Narberth, 10am-4pm, where the Cheerful team and local digital illustrator Liam Cole will be on-hand to help you with your designs.

40 lucky people will get to see their illustrations published in the final fundraising book and two budding designers will be chosen by Millie Marotta to receive the accolade of “Millie’s Choice” and a treasure trove of luscious prizes. There will also be a ‘People’s Choice’ award with an opportunity for you to vote for your favourite designs on Facebook; the two images with the most “likes” on the Cheerful Project Facebook page will receive prizes too.

The artists’ edition Millie Marotta’s Animal Kingdom Book of Prints (Batsford) is available now.

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Rowan Matthiessen

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