AN ARTIST from Barry has been shortlisted in a contest described as the ‘Oscars of international wildlife art.’

And on Tuesday, May 26 Nichola Hope was revealed as the winner of The Elizabeth Hosking Prize for Watercolour in the Wildlife Artist of the Year 2020 competition.

She studied painting at Winchester School and Cardiff Met Uni and is one of 160 artists, out of more than 1500 people, who entered the contest.

Ms Hope’s watercolour depicts a Tansy Beetle and her work was selected under the Facing Extinction category.

She said: This beautiful leaf beetle has been facing extinction in the UK.

“Wildlife Artist of the Year is an internationally renowned art competition and exhibition often referred to as the ‘Oscars of international wildlife art.’

“The competition is open to all wildlife artists working in all mediums across the globe.

“The annual event, held at Mall galleries, London, attracted thousands of entries.

“Wildlife Artist of the Year is a very special initiative for David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation DSWF which has attracted more than 11,000 entries and raised more than £1.2m since 2008.

“I’ve always drawn as a child and I continued that interest by going on to study fine art Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree

“In 2006 I was fortunate to begin working as a visiting artist at Welsh National Opera, alongside my sister who is also a practicing painter.

“More recently, I have began drawing shore bird specimens in the natural history stores at National Museum Of Wales

“I exhibit widely in exhibitions across the UK abroad."

The overall winner was awarded £10,000 and the runner-up £1,000.

Seven category winners took £500 each and the People’s Choice Award gave £500 Great Art vouchers.

As winner of the Elizabeth Hosking Prize for Watercolour Ms Hope receives £500.

Judges, Hazel Soan and Elizabeth Hosking said: "We chose Tansy Beetle for its boldness and colour, and strong and vibrant use of the watercolour medium.

"It is an exciting rendition of an endangered species which apparently lives only in a 20 mile stretch of the banks of the River Ouse around York - very precious indeed.” 

The Artist Magazine Personal Choice Award means exposure in the publication.

“I I feel really honoured to be selected for such a prestigious competition two years in a row," Ms Hope said.

“It’s an incredible experience to exhibited with so many talented international artists.

“In 2020, due to covid-19, the exhibition and shortlisted artworks will be available to view and buy online.

“It would be wonderful to raise awareness of this breath-taking online gallery and virtual exhibition.

“Art is a fantastic way to support conservation and wildlife charities.”

She added: “I’m now creating a series of works on shorebirds that are connected to the Pembrokeshire coast and I’ll also be exhibiting at the Senedd Pierhead gallery.

Follow her on Instagram @thedrawingeye

Voting in The People’s choice award is open until the end of June.

To vote, visit