Wildlife artist, Lorna Hamilton has been chosen as a category finalist in the prestigious BBC Artist of the Year Award. The Saintfield artist's painting was one of over 100 artworks chosen from 780 entries. Lorna says, "I'm excited to be participating in such a prestigious competition. I would be delighted to win my category and make it through to the next stage." Lorna says her painting entitled, ‘The Homecoming' features a family of Barn Owls and was painted to highlight the species in the UK. At present the Barn Owl is believed to be in decline; studies are being undertaken to establish their numbers in N.Ireland. Public participation is the key to a successful survey and ultimately the future of this beloved bird in Ireland and the UK. Lorna has also had her painting, ‘Ghost of the North' selected from numerous entries around the world to be exhibited in the Society of Animal Artists Annual Show. The exhibition will be held in Rolling Hills Wildlife Museum, Kansas and will attract many of America's top art collectors and wildlife enthusiasts. Lorna said, "It was great news to be accepted for the show again. The competition from other artists is always steep. I am honoured the judges felt that my work was of a high standard to be included." ‘Ghost of the North' also won Highly Commended in this year's Wildscape Artist of the Year Award.