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Youth Art Contest

Because children’s mental health matters!


The “My Feelings are a Work of Art” Youth Art Contest is an activity to raise awareness about children’s mental health in Denton County.  We encourage children and teens across the county to participate in this art contest as we recognize the importance of children’s mental health to every person in our community.

In 2017, we received 159 entries from children in 9 different cities across Denton County! Winning pieces of artwork and literature will be posted online soon and will be on display across Denton County through August 2017 in recognition of Mental Health Month. The original artwork will be returned upon request – email courtney.barnard@cookchildrens.org. 


2017 Art Contest winners


Visual Arts, grades PreK-Kindergarten

First place: Natalia, age 4, “Me and my best friends”

Second place: Aliana, age 5, “Estoy triste (I am sad)”

Visual Arts, grades 1-2

First place: Jensen, age 6, “This Makes Me Feel Calm”

Visual Arts, grade 3

First place: Kamryn, age 9, “The Hart of Love & Hope”

Second place: Aiden, age 9, “Sad and mad”

Third place: Julian, age 9, “Spots of rainbow”

Visual Arts, grade 4

First place: Zoe, age 9, “exploding volcano”

Second place: Rachel, age 10, “Inside-Out”

Third place: Jaxon, age 10, “Ugly hair”

Visual Arts, grades 5-6

First place: Meera, age 12, “Confusion”

Second place: Daniella, age 11, “Many Feelings, Many Emojis”

Visual Arts, grades 7-8

First place: Phillip, age 14, “Heart U.S. Mind”

Second place: Vivien, age 13, “Escaping Reality”

Third place: Alyssa, age 13, “Part of Her”

Visual Arts, grades 9-12

First place: Nick, age 16, “Mind hunted”

Literature, grades 3-5

First place: Elliott, age 9, “My Feelings”

Literature, grades 7-9

First place: Maya, age 12, “Mom’s Car”

Literature, grades 10-12

First place: James, age 17, “CHAINED”


See 2016 Art Contest Winners Here!

In 2016, we received 113 entries from children in 17 different cities across Denton County! Winning pieces of artwork and literature are online and were on display across Denton County from May to August 2016 in recognition of Mental Health Month. The original artwork will be returned upon request – email courtney.barnard@cookchildrens.org. 


2016 Art Contest winners


Visual Arts, grades PreK-1

Taryn, age 7 This picture makes me feel free. There is somewhere to run around and a home to return to.

1st place
Taryn, age 7
This picture makes me feel free. There is somewhere to run around and a home to return to.

2nd place Eli, age 5 "Anger" He's mad. He is on fire, he likes to scream. He is angry.

2nd place
Eli, age 5
“Anger”
He’s mad. He is on fire, he likes to scream. He is angry.

3rd place Grace, age 7 "Think About Feelings" This is a picture of me feeling different emotions.

3rd place
Grace, age 7
“Think About Feelings”
This is a picture of me feeling different emotions.

Honorable Mention Jakob, age 5 "Rainbow" I feel like a rainbow and I feel like a nice sun.

Honorable Mention
Jakob, age 5
“Rainbow”
I feel like a rainbow and I feel like a nice sun.


Visual Arts, grades 2-3

1st place Gabby, age 8 "Happy" People should be who they want to be. Love who they want to love and be happy.

1st place
Gabby, age 8
“Happy”
People should be who they want to be. Love who they want to love and be happy.

2nd place Sophie, age 9 "Angerness" It is about anger being like a fire.

2nd place
Sophie, age 9
“Angerness”
It is about anger being like a fire.

3rd place Aurora, age 9 "Love is what you want" My art work is about your heart. Love can be whatever you want. All you need is love. Love for everything.

3rd place
Aurora, age 9
“Love is what you want”
My art work is about your heart. Love can be whatever you want. All you need is love. Love for everything.

Honorable Mention Delaney, age 8 "Love in Art" Two sisters watching the sunset, having a picnic. The two sisters show love in the picture. They are sitting on two little hills.

Honorable Mention
Delaney, age 8
“Love in Art”
Two sisters watching the sunset, having a picnic. The two sisters show love in the picture. They are sitting on two little hills.


Visual Arts, grades 4-5

1st place Lucy, age 9 "Emotions are Important" Emotions are important. No matter what the feeling is they represent you and you are important.

1st place
Lucy, age 9
“Emotions are Important”
Emotions are important. No matter what the feeling is they represent you and you are important.

2nd place Ethan, age 11 "Anger" The feelings I get when something makes me angry.

2nd place
Ethan, age 11
“Anger”
The feelings I get when something makes me angry.

3rd place Sam, age 9 "A Storm of Curiosity and Discovery" Growing up is like wandering through a desert. The journey is filled with lots of wonderful things that I'm curious and I want to learn about. And it's long, and it's hard, and it's lonely. Most of the time I feel happy and excited. And, some of the time, I feel lost and lonely, and like I'm barely finding my way. I think all these fellings are just right for growing up. The wonder and the emptiness make me explore to learn about myself. It's the perfect "storm of curiosity and discovery"!

3rd place
Sam, age 9
“A Storm of Curiosity and Discovery”
Growing up is like wandering through a desert. The journey is filled with lots of wonderful things that I’m curious and I want to learn about. And it’s long, and it’s hard, and it’s lonely. Most of the time I feel happy and excited. And, some of the time, I feel lost and lonely, and like I’m barely finding my way. I think all these fellings are just right for growing up. The wonder and the emptiness make me explore to learn about myself. It’s the perfect “storm of curiosity and discovery”!

Honorable Mention Karma, age 10 "Mona[me]sa" My art work is representing me feeling being wonderful and vivid.

Honorable Mention
Karma, age 10
“Mona[me]sa”
My art work is representing me feeling being wonderful and vivid.


Visual Arts, grades 6-8

1st place Lilly, age 13 "Mixed Emotions" It's a metaphor for your 2 worst emotions mixing into something good.

1st place
Lilly, age 13
“Mixed Emotions”
It’s a metaphor for your 2 worst emotions mixing into something good.

2nd place Lily, age 14 "Ocean" I represented sadness by making the person who is crying in black and white pencil, and the ocean of tears in blue water color, showing how even in times of colorless sadness, there is always colorful hope in the future.

2nd place
Lily, age 14
“Ocean”
I represented sadness by making the person who is crying in black and white pencil, and the ocean of tears in blue water color, showing how even in times of colorless sadness, there is always colorful hope in the future.

3rd place Samantha, age 13 "Silhouette" A girl is going through a lot, the silhouettes are not helping even though they may think they are. Everything is in black and white but her thoughts are in screaming color.

3rd place
Samantha, age 13
“Silhouette”
A girl is going through a lot, the silhouettes are not helping even though they may think they are. Everything is in black and white but her thoughts are in screaming color.

Honorable Mention Meryl, age 12 "Endless Feelings" Endless feelings and moods, happy, sad, mad, sick, lonely, never ending.

Honorable Mention
Meryl, age 12
“Endless Feelings”
Endless feelings and moods, happy, sad, mad, sick, lonely, never ending.


Visual Arts, grades 6-8 (Special Artists)

1st place Alexander, age 14 "How I Feel When Mad"

1st place
Alexander, age 14
“How I Feel When Mad”

2nd place Isela, age 12 "Me" I love my family <3

2nd place
Isela, age 12
“Me”
I love my family <3

Honorable Mention Nuvia Shantel, age 13 "Winning at game day made me proud" Winning at game day made me proud because the best moment of my life was my old friends I've ever had even though I was wishing Tommy was their for him to see his old friend, I said.

Honorable Mention
Nuvia Shantel, age 13
“Winning at game day made me proud”
Winning at game day made me proud because the best moment of my life was my old friends I’ve ever had even though I was wishing Tommy was their for him to see his old friend, I said.


Visual Arts, grades 9-11

1st place Aryana, age 16 "Standing Beauty" It's almost never what it seems. Everything seems "fine", but take a look withen…I'm telling the story of a girl who's going through depression, Bipolar, Anorexia, and shitzophrenia. I have an idea on what it's like…she's a standing beauty. It's a part of me.

1st place
Aryana, age 16
“Standing Beauty”
It’s almost never what it seems. Everything seems “fine”, but take a look withen…I’m telling the story of a girl who’s going through depression, Bipolar, Anorexia, and shitzophrenia. I have an idea on what it’s like…she’s a standing beauty. It’s a part of me.

2nd place Spence, age 17 "It's not over yet" This picture characterizes my struggle with mental health. I've come to learn that the only monster I have to fear lives in my own head. And how I know I can win the fight with him.

2nd place
Spence, age 17
“It’s not over yet”
This picture characterizes my struggle with mental health. I’ve come to learn that the only monster I have to fear lives in my own head. And how I know I can win the fight with him.

3rd place Nancy, age 17 "The truth will set you free" The male in my drawing is going through a lot but refuses to tell people about his past.

3rd place
Nancy, age 17
“The truth will set you free”
The male in my drawing is going through a lot but refuses to tell people about his past.

Honorable Mention Johnathon, age 16 "Hope" Hope comes from many ways but the thing that gives me more hope is god.

Honorable Mention
Johnathon, age 16
“Hope”
Hope comes from many ways but the thing that gives me more hope is god.


Literature, grades 6-7

1st place Amelie, age 12 "A Masterpiece of Emotions" I have been writing for about two years and this is the first competition I have been in. Although my writing is different, I believe it can run the distance.

1st place
Amelie, age 12
“A Masterpiece of Emotions”
I have been writing for about two years and this is the first competition I have been in. Although my writing is different, I believe it can run the distance.

2nd place Austin, age 13 "Austin" This poem describes me, if you know me it fits me perfectly.

2nd place
Austin, age 13
“Austin”
This poem describes me, if you know me it fits me perfectly.

3rd place Samantha, age 12 "The Gun Shot" My work is a sad poem based on an experience I had as a kid.

3rd place
Samantha, age 12
“The Gun Shot”
My work is a sad poem based on an experience I had as a kid.

Honorable Mention Marissa, age 12 "Attitude" I wrote it because that's my attitude, but I should not be giving that attitude. It's a diamond poem, the words crossed out are the attitude I should not give and the underlined are te ones I should.

Honorable Mention
Marissa, age 12
“Attitude”
I wrote it because that’s my attitude, but I should not be giving that attitude. It’s a diamond poem, the words crossed out are the attitude I should not give and the underlined are te ones I should.


Literature, grades 8-11

1st place Jasmine, age 17 "My World War 3" This is my story of my illness that locks on to so many. It's a war many of us are fighting. Mental illness won't win this time.

1st place
Jasmine, age 17
“My World War 3”
This is my story of my illness that locks on to so many. It’s a war many of us are fighting. Mental illness won’t win this time.

2nd place Andrew, age 15 "Is It" For people with mental health problems to know they're not alone.

2nd place
Andrew, age 15
“Is It”
For people with mental health problems to know they’re not alone.

3rd place Katherine, age 14 "The Power of Love: A Sonnet" Love is such a beautiful virtue, it does such wonderful things, love is indeed the greatest commandment.

3rd place
Katherine, age 14
“The Power of Love: A Sonnet”
Love is such a beautiful virtue, it does such wonderful things, love is indeed the greatest commandment.

Honorable Mention Aries, age 14 "Bipolar Sanity" I wrote this poem out of frustration and anger but not having anyone to tell.

Honorable Mention
Aries, age 14
“Bipolar Sanity”
I wrote this poem out of frustration and anger but not having anyone to tell.


Questions? Email courtney.barnard@cookchildrens.org.