Pen proves mighty as biro portrait wins top prize at Texaco Children's Art Competition
A self-portrait carefully sketched with a black biro was awarded the top prize at the 61st Texaco Children's Art Competition.
Frances Treanor (18), from Co Monaghan, won the €1,500 first prize in the senior 16-18 age category.
Frances, who is studying fine art in the National College of Art and Design alongside her twin sister Maeve, was shocked to hear she had won.
"I never thought it would happen," she said. "I've done many portraits in pencil before but this time I wanted to try something different... It certainly paid off."
It is the third time she has entered the competition. She was placed second in her age category in 2012 and 2013.
She sketched the award-winning piece while a student at St Louis Secondary School in Monaghan Town and thanked her art teachers Teresa Mahony and Stephen Penders.
Conor Marley (16), a student at St Gerard's School and Support Services, Belfast, topped Category G reserved for children with special needs for his painting 'Natural Close Up'.
The youngest winner was five-year-old Ciara Ward from St Malachy's Primary School, Castlewellan, Co Down whose colourful painting 'Fabulous Flowers' was named the winning entry in the Under Six category.
Wesley College student Vitaly Dergachev (15), won the 14-15 year-old category with his piece 'Wisdom'.
The 21 top prizes were announced at The Hugh Lane Gallery, in Dublin's Parnell Square, where they will remain on display until May 31.
The winners, ranging in age from five to 18, were chosen from 30,000 entries.
The competition is the longest sustained sponsored art competition in Ireland.
Past winners include artists Graham Knuttel, Bernadette Madden, Paul Costello, Ruairí Quinn and Dorothy Cross.