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Talented art student wins top competition with an 'extraordinary' British illustration


A talented student has won £250 to spend on art supplies for her “extraordinary” British illustration.

Tuisku Hiltunen, a second year Design Illustration, Graphic Novels and Children’s Publishing student at Wrexham Glyndwr University, won first prize in a prestigious Oxford Press competition.

Wrexham Glyndwr University’s School of Creative Arts has been since ranked top in Wales in The Guardian’s University Guide and 12th in the UK - a 31-place rise.

Tuisku, originally from Finland, was delighted and surprised to win the competition which asked for an illustration to represent the idea of a community, in a vibrant and cosmopolitan Britain.

She said: “The criteria was very strict and difficult, as it had to be a British town but it was implied that it should be based on Oxford, where I’ve never been before. It also had to be a busy residential street but include nature, different characters and a narrative.

“We also had to think about health and safety in the drawing – so I couldn’t put children playing up in a tree or pets in a kitchen.

“I was very surprised I won.”

Tuisku, who studies in the School of Creative Arts at North Wales Art School and Design, in Wrexham, won £250 worth of vouchers spending it on art supplies to help with her degree.

Her Design Illustration, Graphic Novels and Children’s Publishing lecturer Sue Thornton is highly impressed and proud of Tuisku’s work.

She said: “Tuisku did brilliantly well working to the strict brief for the competition and to come from abroad and illustrate a complex British scene.

“We’re teaching students how to go out into the real world, work to a tight brief and gain employment by applying what they’ve learnt at the art school.

“We are proud to have so many successful students studying here in Wrexham.”

The judges of Oxford University Press Illustration competition congratulated Tuisku for her skilful work.

The judges said: “We were all delighted with the level of detail and skill they’d worked into their piece, and the colour palette was gorgeous.

“It was a very complex brief for them to follow and they did it beautifully. It was a very clever composition.
“Our particular favourite section is the magician with his top hat and coloured scarves trailing out of his suitcase, and the lady leaning out of the window trying to catch her parrot! Truly, an extraordinary piece of work.”

For more information about the North Wales Art School and Design visit

Or for details about the Illustration, Graphic Novels and Children’s Publishing course visit