Artwork by Sarah Meikle

Wildlife Artist of the Year 2024

Entry Categories

Abstract World

This exciting category is about interpretation, freedom, and expression. Since the early 1900’s, abstract art has provided a central stream of modern art and is an essential pillar of the art world. This year, DSWF has invited those who choose to express themselves non-figuratively to showcase their talents for wildlife. With the natural world crumbling around us, the creative process is an essential tool used to capture the beauty and fragility of global biodiversity. The dynamism and intrigue of abstract creation opens a door for pure and raw displays of feeling and freedom, allowing an entirely new audience to be a part of the competition.

Henry McAlpine
Artwork by Gale More O’Ferrall
The Prowl

Animal Behaviour

Animals, like humans, have complex personalities and behaviours, and show a wide range of emotion, intellect, and sentience. Whether showing incredible skill in seeking food, demonstrating protective instincts for their young, engaging in a unique mating performance or simply relaxing in the sun, every creature will display individuality and character. The Animal Behaviour category has welcomed artworks that exhibit a true understanding of animal behaviour, capturing moments that might be humorous, tragic, aggressive, or simply a part of their daily routine.

Earth’s Wild Beauty

Our planet is an inspiring tapestry of contrasting habitats and landscapes, providing homes to a host of different animals, plants, trees, and insects. Humans share this planet with a huge variety of species, and everyday moments of beauty occur as the land and wildlife living within it adapts to survive the extremes of nature. The Earth’s Wild Beauty category is a celebration of Earth’s wild landscapes and seascapes, and all that live in them.

Artwork by Paul Burgess
Parsons Grove No6 Revelation
Artwork by Ophelia Redpath

Environmental Artivism

This category enables artists to use their platform to share work and their thoughts on the issues facing wildlife and the wild in this Anthropocene. This category invites honest discussion and the ability to shed light, unpack and determine some of the more pressing environmental topics of our time. It can also be a celebration of how art can be used as a positive tool for effective and emotive communication. We invite the thinkers, the feelers, and the activists to share their personal insights on what is happening to our natural world and our affect upon it, both good and bad.

Facing Extinction

Today, the world is facing its next mass extinction with hundreds of species across the planet vanishing from the face of the earth before our very eyes. Whether driven by habitat destruction, wildlifecrime, human-wildlife conflict, pollution, climate change, or disease, the growing challenges facing many of these incredible creatures could mean that if we don’t end extinction, our last chance to see them will be on canvas or immortalised in sculpture. The Facing Extinction category invites artists to celebrate these vulnerable species, capturing their behaviour and importance in striking imagery. They may be gone tomorrow if we do not act today.

Artwork by Georgia Lancaster
Artwork by Jessica Eggers

Into The Blue

Covering 75% of our planet and essential to all life on earth, fresh water and salt water are home to some of the most unusual, diverse, mysterious and incredible creatures. Due to pollution, particularly plastic, our oceans are struggling to support life. The Into the Blue category features artworks that illustrate the wonderful world of water – be it ocean, seashore, wetland, river, or stream – and the incredible animals and landscapes within it.


The wonderful world of winged creatures is diverse,complex, and fascinating. Birds, bees, butterflies, and bats all experience the planet from a different perspective, soaring above our oceans, crossing vast desert plains and making their homes in unusual locations. The Wings category shows the extraordinary variety of winged wildlife on our planet, including birds and insects, in-flight or at rest.

Artwork by Iryna Khort
Artwork by Elsa Olander
Elsa Olander - Starving Cheetah - 46 x 36- mixed media

Youth Exclusive Award

(for artists aged 15-19 years)
This category has been re-imagined for young artists whose work aligns with and reflects the voice of a new generation. Capped at 19 years old, this is a group who will include new emerging art professionals as well as strong amateur talent. Young artists are invited to create something true to the essence of their vision, specifically reflecting the natural world, where the power of art can be shown from either a human impact and awareness perspective, or the simple desire to illustrate something beautiful and raw. We want young people to open their hearts and minds to what it is to be a courageous new youth art ambassador for wildlife.

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