2023 Little Hare Illustration Prize now open
Hardie Grant Children’s Publishing is delighted to announce that the 2023 Little Hare Illustration Prize is now open. Awarded biennially, the prize is open to aspiring picture-book artists across Australia and New Zealand.
Entrants are invited to create sample artwork for an upcoming Little Hare picture-book manuscript. The winner will receive a publishing contract, an advance against royalties, and comprehensive art direction and editorial support to take the picture book through to publication. This year’s Little Hare Illustration Prize text is The Everyday Tutu, by Andrea Rowe, best-selling and award-winning author of the 2022 CBCA Early Childhood Book of the Year, Jetty Jumping.
‘Andrea’s spirited, delightful text presents a main character that will be recognisable to any parent of a determined and fashion-forward preschooler,’ said Hardie Grant publisher Chren Byng. ‘It’s a text that will suit oodles of different illustration styles and is rich with possibility for emerging artists. We can’t wait to see what it inspires!’
Artists from any background are invited to enter, including self-taught illustrators, college graduates, graphic designers and fine artists. To be eligible for the prize, artists should not have illustrated more than one picture book with a trade publisher.
‘Our judging team is looking for artists who can demonstrate skill in composition, character development and design, and visual narrative,’ said Byng, ‘as well as original and arresting illustration styles and points of view. We have a long tradition of working with and developing emerging artists and the Little Hare Illustration Prize is a celebration and affirmation of that commitment.’
Established to inspire new work from unpublished and emerging artists, the Little Hare Illustration Prize helped launch the publishing careers of 2021 winner Meg Rennie (Let’s Build a Boat) and shortlistees Jake A Minton (Zombie Diaries and There’s No Such Book), Jennifer Goldsmith (Freckles) and Myo Yim (White Sunday).
The key dates for the 2023 Little Hare Illustration Prize are as follows:
- Entries open: Tuesday 17 Oct 2023
- Entries close: midnight, Monday 15 January 2024
- Shortlist announced: mid-February 2024
- Winner announced: late February 2024
How to enter:
Read the terms and conditions and competition text below and submit the following:
- One to three pages of character sketches that shows your character development.
- One rough double-page black-and-white sketch that demonstrates your ability to storyboard and interpret narrative.
- One double-page colour illustration that shows your final artwork.
Only illustrations that are based on the text The Everyday Tutu by Andrea Rowe will be considered. You can select any double-page section of the text that you would like to illustrate for your submission; please indicate in your PDF submission which part/s of the text you have chosen to illustrate. Do not illustrate the whole book.
For the purposes of your submission, you can work to any picture book trim you like. Our most common single-page trims are:
- Square -- 244 x 244mm (double-page: 244mm high x 488mm wide)
- Portrait -- 275 x 225mm (double-page: 275mm high x 450mm wide)
- Landscape -- 225 x 275mmm (double-page: 225mm high x 550mm wide)
Please ensure you upload your submission in one pdf, maximum size 10MB.
Terms & Conditions
By entering the 2023 Little Hare Illustration Prize, you confirm the following:
- That you have illustrated no more than one published (or contracted to be published) children's picture book with a trade publisher (i.e. a publisher who produces books for the general book trade, and not including educational or other specialist publishers).
- That you are a citizen or permanent resident of Australia or New Zealand.
- That the work is entirely your own and is not created with any assistance from artificial intelligence, nor does it breach any existing copyright or other right of any third party.
- That outside of this submission, you will not reproduce any part of the competition text, written by Andrea Rowe. Nor will you store it in a retrieval system or transmit it in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise.
- That outside of this submission, you will not publish or license a third party to publish the artwork that was created in response to the competition text. Outside of this submission, you will not take the central concept of the competition text and publish or license a third party to publish artwork or text based on the central concept of the competition text.
- That the judges' decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into during or after the judging process. The judges reserve the right not to select a winner.
- That if you are selected as the winner, you agree to contract world rights in all formats and languages to Hardie Grant Children's Publishing in return for a negotiated advance against royalties and standard contractual terms. You will retain copyright in your work.
- That shortlisted and winning artists will be contacted via email and/or phone, and that in the event you are contacted, that you will respond within 5 working days.
- That you will keep all matters relating to the 2023 Little Hare Illustration Prize confidential until publication of the competition text.
The Everyday Tutu
© Andrea Rowe
Pages 1, 2 and 3
Pages 4 and 5
On Mondays, I wear my tutu.
I put one foot in, then the next. I shimmy it up, up, up, and tug it tight into place on my hips.
My skip-stepping-swirling, just-right-for-twirling, everyday tutu.
Pages 6 and 7
I slurp cereal for breakfast, build block towers with my baby brother and climb into our snug and squished cushion house.
I giggle and snuggle in my skip-stepping-swirling, just-right-for-twirling, romping, and roughhousing, everyday tutu.
Pages 8 and 9
On Tuesdays, I twist my tutu up over my trousers and pirouette to the dog park.
I do high steps, karate kicks and long leaps as Leroy trots beside me in my skip-stepping-swirling, just-right-for-twirling, sausage-dog-dragging, everyday tutu.
Pages 10 and 11
Wednesdays are for fill-the-fridge-up shopping.
In the supermarket, I flutter and fly in dizzy-whizzy circles. I weave and whirl in front of the trolley, wiggling my fingers out wide.
It’s impossible to stand still in my skip-stepping-swirling, just-right-for-twirling, banana-bunch-buying, everyday tutu.
Pages 12 and 13
On Thursdays, I pull on my gumboots and practice pliés and arabesques in the squelchy, soggy puddles by the backdoor.
After lunch I watch my tutu go around … and around … and around!
[Illustration note: she’s watching the washing machine]
My skip-stepping-swirling, just-right-for-twirling, might-need-a-cleaning, everyday tutu.
Pages 14 and 15
Fridays are fun days to make and paint and colour.
I glue shiny stars and glitter in whirling, curling circles. I make teeny-tiny treasures that Dad puts into licky-stamped letters with photos of me in my skip-stepping-swirling, just-right-for-twirling, crafting-and-creating, everyday tutu.
[Illustration note: she’s sending letters to her grandparents, along with a recent photo of herself]
Pages 16 and 17
Saturdays bring ding-dong doorbells and rat-a-tat knocks, and long lists of lots to do.
We race from one side of town to the other, buying presents as we go.
Two parties in one day, double-dashing, twice-hip-hipping, in my skip-stepping-swirling, just-right-for-twirling, birthday-party-cheering, everyday tutu.
Pages 18 and 19
Back home, I tippety-toe point, and wide-arm reach with the tickly feather duster, polishing and sparkling in my skip-stepping-swirling, just-right-for-twirling, birthday-party-cheering, messy-house-cleaning, everyday tutu.
Pages 20 and 21
Then rush-rush, tidy up, toys away, teeth brushed, hair up, special dress for special guests!
[Illustration note: She’s pulled her tutu over the bottom of her special dress]
Racing, chasing cousins through the rooms and out again, in my skip-stepping-swirling, just-right-for-twirling, birthday-party-cheering, messy-house-cleaning, running-and-hollering, everyday tutu.
Pages 22 and 23
What a week! Breathe out!
Sometimes Sundays seem so tiring. Sometimes everyday tutus feel a tiny bit tight, itchy and scratchy, and not what I want to wear today.
I shimmy it down, down, down, one foot out and then the other, and I fold it just so.
My skip-stepping-swirling, just-right-for-twirling, sometimes-out-for-lending … my everyday tutu.
[Illustration note: tutu is on loan to her baby brother]
We are currently accepting submissions for the following categories ONLY:
- Picture book manuscripts for our Bright Light imprint (stories that shine a light on important conversations, topics or experiences)
- Graphic novels (for all ages)
- Submissions from writers and illustrators from marginalised backgrounds and communities (NB: We welcome submissions about any subject matter and in any genre intended for young readers.)
Please note that currently we are not accepting submissions from unagented writers outside of these categories.
- Submissions should be from citizens or residents of Australia and/or New Zealand. We do not accept submissions from outside Australia, New Zealand or Oceania unless via an agent, or the author has citizenship or residency within the region.
- We can only consider one manuscript per person at a time.
- For writers and illustrators from marginalised backgrounds and communities: We welcome submissions about any subject matter and in any genre intended for young readers.
- We are not considering play scripts, screenplays, activity or poster books, individual short stories, technical manuals, cookbooks, how-to guides, travel guides or educational textbooks for the children's and YA lists.
- Due to the large volume of submissions, we are unable to provide individual editorial advice.
- If you do not meet these guidelines, your manuscript will not be considered.
A note on word lengths:
- Junior fiction manuscripts, for readers aged approximately 4–8 years, should be between 2000 and 20,000 words;
- middle-grade manuscripts, for readers aged approximately 8–12, should be between 20,000 and 50,000 words;
- and young adult manuscripts, for readers aged approximately 12+, should be between 40,000 and 80,000 words.
- There is no word count specification for graphic novels.
Note: The Ampersand Prize for debut children's and YA manuscripts runs every two years, and will next run in July 2024. More information can be found here.
Please note we are not able to follow up on unsuccessful submissions.
Please note we are not able to follow up on unsuccessful submissions.