Online Art School Oil Painting Awards

We have many talented artists here, at the Online Art School, who have developed their painting skills with the help of our oil painting tutorials and challenging competitions.

Take a look at some of the past painting award entries that our students submitted for the chance to win exclusive prizes. We are currently not holding any competitions.

MJS Oil Painting Awards Logo

Award Winners

Michael's first place winner: "Passing Through" by tamartin4339

Michael's second place winner: "A Room With a View" by Charlotte

Open vote winner: "Late Sun on a River" by igor.camak

MJS Team Special Mentions

"Pond View" by captainrankin

"Summer Reflections" by idenetto

"Rainy Day Fun" by sonlite7

"Reflet A La Clemencaliere" by bertrandjc86

September's painting challenge: 'Paint a Realistic Water Scene'

For this painting challenge, you can paint any scene that contains a form of water. This can be anything from rain, a puddle, a lake, or even a waterfall. The most important thing is to ensure that the water looks realistic in your painting.


Make sure that you pay close attention to the speed or stillness of the water and the reflections upon it. You will need to keep the colours as accurate as possible to achieve the right level of realism. The Online Art School has several oil painting tutorials on how to paint water, which may help you with specific oil painting techniques for painting realistic water.

Dates to remember:

Submission deadline: 11th October

Voting: 12th October - 1st November

Winners announced: 2nd November

You have just under four weeks to complete your oil painting and upload it, together with a description about your painting. You’ll also need to state how long you’ve been painting with oils and how long you’ve been a student of the Online Art School.

I will choose a first and second place winner for the awards based on overall realism and the oil painting techniques applied. There will also be a third winner, which will be the painting that receives the most votes from students and the public.

You do not have to be an advanced artist to enter the MJS Oil Painting Awards, as I will consider your level of experience when judging your paintings.

Voting will be open for three weeks, and the winners announced by email and published on my social media platforms. Don’t worry, I will never share any personal details, just your beautiful paintings. To read the competition privacy policy and terms & conditions, Click Here

The ins and outs of how it works:

  1. I’ll announce a new oil painting challenge every two months via email and in the Online Forum.
  2. Students will have four weeks from the date that the challenge was announced, to upload their oil painting or acrylic painting.
  3. Voting will then be open to both the public and to students for three weeks after the submission deadline.
  4. Michael James Smith will select a first and a second-place winner based on realism, composition and technique.
  5. The oil painting or acrylic painting that receives the most votes from students and the public will also win a prize.
  6. There will be three winners in total for each challenge.
  7. Prizes may vary between challenges and will be determined at the discretion of Michael James Smith Online Art School.
  8. Winners will be contacted directly via email.
  9. Winners will also be announced in the Michael James Smith Online Art School newsletter, website and forum, and published on Michael James Smith Online Art School social media sites, together with their winning paintings.

To keep things fair there are a few simple rules:

  • You must agree to the terms and conditions when entering an oil painting or acrylic painting for the MJS Oil Painting Awards.
  • You must be an active student within the Michael James Smith Online Art School to enter the MJS Oil Painting Awards.
  • The artwork must be an original painting by the artist submitting it.
  • Tutorial painting submissions will not be accepted.
  • Entries for the MJS Oil Painting Awards must be submitted using the proper channel here. Any other forms of submission will not be accepted.
  • Students can only submit one painting for each challenge but can enter as many challenges as they would like.
  • You must provide the following information when you upload your oil painting: a description of your artwork, how long you have been painting with oils, how long you have been a member of the Online Art School and your location.
  • Voting for the MJS Oil Painting Award winner will be limited to one vote per person.

The following prizes will be up for grabs:

  • A signed Michael James Smith oil painting print
  • A Winsor & Newton oil colour set
  • A set of Michael James Smith paintbrushes
  • Gift vouchers
  • Free membership

Uploading your image

You are limited to a 3MB image file size. If you need to resize your image, there are many websites that allow you to resize images for free, such as