Southsea's Alisha crowned champion as drawing wins nationwide approval in Bic Kids Young Artist competition

Alisha Hussain, 9, has won the Bic Kids Young Artist 2019 competition and is to see her picture of a llama emblazoned across billboards nationwide.  ''Picture: Habibur Rahman
Alisha Hussain, 9, has won the Bic Kids Young Artist 2019 competition and is to see her picture of a llama emblazoned across billboards nationwide. ''Picture: Habibur Rahman
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A SCHOOLGIRL’S drawing of a smiling llama is to be emblazoned across hundreds of billboards nationwide after winning a competition.

After winning the regional Bic Kids Young Artist competition, Alisha Hussain has been unveiled as the national winner and will now see her picture viewed by millions of motorists across the British Isles and Republic of Ireland.

Alisha, nine, said: ‘It’s awesome to know that my drawing will be used on billboards across the country. I’m so excited and really proud.’

After beating competition from 1,500 entries, the Craneswater Junior School pupil was unveiled last month as the south east winner and went before a public vote along with 12 other regional winners. Her father, Iqbal Hussain, decided not to tell her straight away. 

Alisha said: ‘We were dropping my friend off and my dad said he had a photograph of an amazing drawing my sister had done. When he passed me the phone I saw the email announcing I had won. I was so happy and shouted out loud. My friend then gave me a hug - I was shocked and surprised.’

The news comes at the end of a tough period for Alisha who tragically lost her mother, Tracey Hussain, after she lost her battle with breast cancer in December 2017.

Iqbal said: ‘It’s fantastic news after what she has been through and has really put a smile on her face after such a tough time - it makes you think that maybe there is some sort of god up there. Her mother would have been so proud of her winning this competition.’

As part of her prize Alisha and ten friends will attend an arts and crafts party at a secret venue which is yet to be announced. 

Jo Hollins, head of marketing BIC UK and Ireland, said: ‘Huge congratulations to our fantastic winner, Alisha, who wowed the judges and the public alike with her bold and colourful llama illustration. We hope that her creative art party helps spur her on to even greater artistic talents.’

Alisha joked: ‘I have a lot of friends and a big family who may have voted for me. I can’t wait for the party.’