AFHE Art Contest for Arizona Homeschoolers - 2014

In honor of the 200th anniversary of the Star Spangled Banner, AFHE is hosting an art contest for Arizona homeschooled students. Finalists and contest winners will have their artwork displayed at the 2014 AFHE Convention for the homeschool community to enjoy in person July 11-12.


Art allows an individual to express creativity and to connect with others in a meaningful way. It is our desire to give Arizona homeschooled students the opportunity to share their work as we celebrate the great nation that we live in and the freedom we enjoy as Americans. We are thrilled to be able to highlight the skills, abilities, and artistic talents of Arizona homeschoolers in this way.


Arizona homeschooled students and graduates ages 10-22 are invited to create a drawing, painting, or photograph based on the theme Celebrate America. Further inspiration may be drawn from the penning of the lyrics of Star Spangled Banner by Francis Scott Key.

NOTE: It is not required that the work of art refer to or reflect the national anthem, the United States flag, or Francis Scott Key. The 200th anniversary of the Star Spangled Banner is simply an opportunity for inspiration if desired. There is much to celebrate about our nation, including beautiful vistas, landscapes, people, landmarks, historical events, and concepts of freedom. Any drawing, painting, or photograph that demonstrates a celebration of the United States of America, past or present, is welcome.


The entry period for the contest is now closed.



10-12 Year Olds
13-16 Year Olds
17-22 Year Olds


Students who are currently being taught at home by their parents in accordance with Arizona Revised Statutes §15-802* are invited to participate in the AFHE Art Contest. Students must be a minimum age of 10 by March 1, 2014. Homeschool graduates who are age 22 or younger and were homeschooled all four years of high school are also invited to enter the contest. Entrants must be residents of Arizona (or belong to a local homeschool support group on the border that serves Arizona homeschooled students such as CHEBA, Christian Home Educators of the Blythe Area). Please contact us for clarification if needed.

*ARS §15-802 defines a homeschool as "a nonpublic school conducted primarily by the parent, guardian, or other person who has custody of the child or nonpublic instruction provided in the child's home." Students enrolled in a public school, private school, charter school, or virtual charter school are ineligible to participate. The children of AFHE Board Members and the Art Contest Judges are not eligible to participate.



Original drawings in pencil (graphite or colored), charcoal, ink, or any combination of the same


Original artwork created with watercolor, tempera, gouache, acrylic, oils* or pastel* paints
(*Caution advised in regard to using oil paints/pastels due to the length of time required for oils to dry and the risk of smudging soft pastels. Protecting the integrity of the artwork is the responsibility of the contestant.)


Original film or digital photographs in black and white or color.


  • Artwork must be completely original by the student. No tracing or computer-generated artwork will be permitted.
  • You may look at photographs or other art for inspiration, but do not copy them. We want to see your unique creativity.
  • Artwork should be flat and two-dimentional created in standard frame size (in inches) of 5x7, 8x10, 11x14, or 16x20, and no more than 1/4" thick (not including mat). This means no sculpture or extremely protruding 3D components.

  • Format of photos may be 8x10, 11x14, or 16x20 - no larger or smaller
  • Original photographs only. No digital manipulation or touch-up is allowed, except for cropping and adjustments to contrast, hue, saturation, tone, and sharpness. These techniques must be applied to the image as a whole, not to only certain areas. Traditional techniques during film development and printing are allowed. In other words, we are more interested in the photographer's skill than in his or her ability to manipulate an image in the darkroom, digital or otherwise.


    Pieces will be judged on originality, creativity, skill/ability, and adherence with the theme.
    A panel of qualified judges selected by AFHE and overseen by the Art Contest Coordinator will judge both the preliminary and final rounds. The decision of the judges is final.


    First, second, and third place in each age and artwork category will receive a cash prize and a ribbon. Honorable mention in each ategory will receive a ribbon. All finalists will receive a certificate of participation.

    First Place $75 $75 $75
    Second Place $50 $50 $50
    Third Place $25 $25 $25




    Submit an online entry form and digital photo of your work by May 15, 2015.

    Once your artwork is completed, you will take a good digital picture of it to submit by email at the time you submit your online entry form. Your entry will be judged by the photo you submit, so you'll want a well-lit, clear picture of your artwork. This helpful link has tips to photograph your artwork in a way that presents it well for the initial judging. NOTE: Minor adjustments to color and contrast are acceptable as long as they are only used to keep the image true to your artwork's appearance in real life. Do not enhance or alter the photo of your artwork with Photoshop or other photo editing programs.

    Do not send your original artwork for the preliminary judging round.

    A team of judges will review all entries and select finalists in each age category and each artwork category. Finalists will be contacted the week of May 30.


    Once you've completed the online entry form, please send a high resolution digital photo of your artwork to with ART CONTEST and the student's name in the subject line of your email. We can receive attachments up to 20 MB file size. For larger files, reduce the file size to under 20 MB or submit your photo via Dropbox or other similar file transfer service. Acceptable file types include pdf or jpg format.

    FILE NAME PROTOCOL: Please make sure that the image file name is the student's last name, first name, and the word art in the following file name format: lastname_firstname_art


    There is no entry fee to participate in the AFHE Art Contest. AFHE membership is not required to enter the contest.


    Each student may submit a maximum of two pieces of art. If you are submitting two entries, you will need to complete and submit two separate entry forms, one for each piece.



    If your artwork is selected as a finalist, you will be contacted the week of May 30 and invited to deliver to us (drop off in person or send by mail) your original artwork for the final judging round. The location to deliver your artwork to will be in the Ahwatukee Foothills area of Phoenix. The address will be provided to finalists the week of May 30. The expense of getting the original artwork to the judging location is the responsibility of the finalists.


    Finalists' original artwork must be received no later than June 16.

    All finalists' original artwork pieces will be on loan to AFHE through July 12 and will be displayed at the AFHE Convention July 11-12. Artists (or a designated representative attending the convention) may pick up their pieces after 5:30 PM Saturday from the ballroom. Any pieces not picked up from the Phoenix Convention Center by 7:00 PM Saturday, July 12 will be returned to the finalists approximately three weeks after the Convention. We strongly urge participating artists to make arrangements to have their artwork picked up from the Convention if at all possible.


    All work must be matted with a simple and lightweight matte and have wire or other hanging hardware attached to the back, ready for hanging. This does not need to be expensive or elaborate. The Art Contest Coordinator will provide direction and suggestions for matting to all finalists. AFHE cannot be held responsible for artwork damaged during shipment or delivery. The student's name must be on the back of artwork/matte board.

    NOTE: The artwork of the finalists' and contest winners will be displayed on tackboards at the Convention Center using T-pins, and for this reason we will only accept matted artwork for judging and display. Please do not frame.


    1. Preliminary entries received between March 1 and May 15, 2014.
    2. Preliminary judging takes place May 16 - May 29.
    3. All participants will be notified by email the week of May 30 with the names of those who have been selected as finalists.
    4. Matted original artwork from finalists must be received by June 16.
    5. Final judging will take place at the end of June.
    6. All finalists will be notified of the results via email in early July.
    7. Winners will be announced on AFHE's website, social media pages, by email to our email subscribers, and in the Arizona Home Education Journal, AFHE's quarterly full-color magazine.
    8. Finalists and winners' artwork will be displayed at the AFHE Convention, July 11-12, at the Phoenix Convention Center in the South Ballroom.
    9. Finalists and winners will pick up their artwork or make arrangements with a friend who is attending the Convention to pick up their artwork after 2:30 PM Saturday, July 12 from the South Ballroom.


    AFHE has the right to use reproduction of entered artwork at its discretion. Full credit will always be given to the artist.
    All judgments are final and interpretations of the guidelines are at AFHE's sole discretion.


    Nancy Manos, AFHE Art Contest Director
    Katie Kruger, Art Contest Coordinator
    602-235-2673 AFHE voicemail