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Bright Artists Shortlisted for AOI World Illustration Awards 2018

last updated 04 June 2018


Who will win the AOI World Illustration Awards 2018?

Ahead of the winners’ announcement this week, we take a look at our fab four Bright artists’ shortlisted for the prestigious prize: Ashling Lindsay, Benji Davies, Flavia Sorrentino and Paddy Donnelly.

We are absolutely delighted to see four Bright artists nominated across three different categories in this year’s AOI World Illustration Awards. Because it really is such an incredible achievement; the highly acclaimed award from the AOI — an association who continuously strive to promote and protect artists and their work — recognises and celebrates illustration on a global level and the shortlist is whittled down from 3,300 entries across 75 countries. We are thrilled to see their talent and hardwork acknowledged, and wish everyone a massive good luck at the award ceremony on Thursday 7th June. But first, a peek at the gorgeous and inspiring shortlisted artwork…

Ashling Lindsay - The Night Box

Children’s Books Category



Ashling Lindsay’s debut picture book ‘The Night Box’, written by Louise Greig and published by Egmont, has already received much acclaim; alongside Ashling’s AOI Award nomination, she has also been shortlisted for the Waterstones Children’s Book Award, the Klaus Flugge Prize and the Kate Greenaway Medal for her beautiful and atmospheric picture book artwork.

“For me what was most important when making this book was to make sure that the image communicated what was intended and would be a book I’d enjoy looking at as a child.”

Ashling Lindsay

View Ashling’s portfolio

Benji Davies - The Grotlyn

Children’s Books Category



After winning the AOI Awards children’s book category in 2015 with ‘Grandad’s Island’, Benji Davies has been nominated once more with his latest author illustrated title ‘The Grotlyn’, published by Harper Collins. His new picture book — a Victorian inspired rhyming tale where nothing is quite as it seems — has also been shortlisted for the V&A Illustration Awards and the Independent Bookshop Week Book Award picture book category.

“The idea was to reflect the mood of a Victorian-style verse, but the illustration should be executed in such a way that it would appeal to a young, contemporary audience; not to be too austere or frightening but intriguing, exciting, and at times humorous.”

Benji Davies

View Benji’s portfolio

Flavia Sorrentino - Portrait of Woman, Isadora Duncan

Research Category


Created by combining traditional mediums gouache, ink, pencil, with photoshop, Flavia talks about the inspiration for her piece: “I wanted to create a cover for the essay ‘The Second Sex’ written by Simone de Beauvoir. I needed to represent the strength and power of knowledge of female identity as a human being. That is why I chose Isadora Duncan’s face, one of the pioneers of modern dance, a dance moved away from rigid ballet technique and towards what she perceived as natural movement.”

View Flavia’s portfolio

Paddy Donnelly - Little Red Riding Hood

Experimental Category


Paddy’s development piece was inspired by the classic fairytale Little Red Riding Hood: “I wanted to show the looming, oppressive feeling of the wolf, without showing the wolf itself, so I depicted its extremely large shadow on the trees. I wanted Little Red to be the only real colourful element. I deliberately created the trees like ‘prison bars’, to show her trapped in the forest, and then I had some warm light coming in from the edge for a little bit of hope.”

View Paddy’s portfolio

For more on the AOI World Illustration Awards and to see the full shortlist, click here.

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