This week has been jam packed with exciting projects for Neal Layton, on Wednesday we joined Neal at The British Academy in London for the Drawing the Future prize giving ceremony. Drawing the Future is an initiative set up in association with Education and Employers with over 13,000 school children entering this year with a drawing of the job they wanted to do when they grow up. The winners of the awards got to meet a Zookeeper, an Architect, A Sportswoman, a Car Designer, an Artist and even a Pantomime Performer.

Neal Layton was honoured to be asked to join the judging panel and spent time mentoring one of the lucky winners Teni who wants to be an author and has been writing stories in notebooks since she was six years old.

Primary Futures connects primary schools with inspirational, diverse volunteers from a range of careers, who come into school to talk to children about their jobs and show how what they are learning at school can lead to an interesting, exciting future. Their in-school activities feed children’s curiosity, break down gender stereotypes and opens their eyes to future possibilities.

Getting the chance to meet a wide range of people doing different jobs is particularly important for those children from disadvantaged backgrounds who have few successful role models, either at home or in their local communities. Primary Futures helps children understand how achieving at school can lead to a satisfying, fulfilling career, in whatever they desire.


Secretary of State for Education, Damian Hinds MP said:

“Drawing the Future is a brilliant initiative which is helping young children begin to think about what they want to do in the future, and realise they can do anything if they put their mind to it.

 As a dad I want my children to think they can do any job they put their mind to, and as Education Secretary, I want to make sure we widen young people’s horizons so they are aware of the incredible opportunities that are out there.  

Primary Futures connects primary schools around the country for free to people from a wide range of jobs and different backgrounds via a secure online database – from apprentices to CEOs, archaeologists to zoologists.

Read more about this fantastic and invaluble initiative over on the Primary Futures website HERE and follow them on Twitter here @Primary Futures

Here are some wonderful photos from this inspiring evening. Photos © Chris Ratcliffe



Neal Layton with prize winner Teni




Neal Layton and Ann Mroz, Publishing director of TES



Last week Neal joined a host of illustrative stars at the Institut Français to launch the South Kensington Lit Festival as part of the Drawing Europe Together book project, a unique collection of illustrations portraying the European community . . . with or without Britain.  (Read our news post HERE )

Are we still ‘United in Diversity’? Forty-five artists from across Europe share their powerful illustrations of the European Union’s shared past and our unsure future. From Brexit bees to wall-jumping bulls.

This is a passionate and heartfelt exploration of Europe and what it means to many of the people who live and work within its borders. The book brings together forty-five renowned illustrators who, through their drawings and accompanying words, share their vision of Europe in this beautiful and timely collection, with a foreword by the British Book Awards Illustrator of the Year 2018, Axel Scheffler.


Inspired by the Drawing (for) Europe exhibition which took place at the Institut Français in London in 2018, Drawing Europe Together showcases the original artwork from the exhibition as well as never-before-seen illustrations from additional leading artists. With contributions from many of the world’s best book illustrators including Quentin Blake Judith Kerr and Chris Riddell.

You can buy a copy HERE 


Published by Macmillan


Listen to Neal talk about his influences and feelings making this image…



That’s not all…


HEY! Look, The Sun newspaper gave Emily Brown and Father Christmas a fantastic 5 Star review! You can grab a copy for your little ones HERE 

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