The Big Draw

The Big Draw has one aim: to get everyone drawing!

Why? Drawing helps us to think, invent and communicate – regardless of age and ability. 

About The Big Draw Founded in 2000, The Big Draw is a visual literacy charity that promotes the universal language of drawing as a tool for learning, expression and invention.

The charity leads a diversified programme encompassing advocacy, empowerment and engagement, and is the driving force behind the The Big Draw Festival – the world’s biggest celebration of drawing.

The charity supports professional and emerging artists through The John Ruskin Prize and exhibition, and regular events, awards and competitions create platforms for each and everyone who wants to draw.

Throughout the year, The Big Draw manages collaborative research projects, campaigns and educational conferences on visual literacy, digital technology and STEAM. Working with cultural and educational organisations, policymakers and businesses The Big Draw demonstrates the social, economic and health benefits that drawing can bring and provides opportunities for everyone to access them.

The Big Draw Festival

The Big Draw Festival has encouraged over four million people back to the drawing board. It has notched up two world records – for the longest drawing in the world (one kilometre) and the greatest number of people drawing simultaneously (over 7,000). The first Big Draw Festival in 2000 attracted 180 partner organisations. Since then, the number had risen to over 1,000, with over 400,000 people participating each year. What began as a one-day celebration of drawing in the UK, is now an annual month-long festival of drawing across the world.

Every October The Big Draw bursts into Inspire Libraries around the county and we work to offer opportunities for individuals and groups to join in with our events. Look out on the event listings for a Big Draw events near you!


Inspire Arts Service leads on The Big Draw for Nottinghamshire and is the Drawing Action Associate for the Campaign for Drawing. It has won two Drawing Inspiration Awards; one for its programme of participation and one for developing a training programme that empowers non-arts professionals to use drawing to achieve their own goals and targets with the groups they work with.