Sussex artist celebrates Queen on Radio Times cover

A Sussex illustrator's work will be seen across the country this week after she was chosen to design a commemorative cover for the Radio Times to mark the Queen's birthday.

Nina Cosford designed the front page for a special issue of the Radio Times celebrating the Queen's Birthday
Nina Cosford designed the front page for a special issue of the Radio Times celebrating the Queen's Birthday

Nina Cosford, who lives and works in Hastings, said she had been overwhelmed by the response to her artwork.

“It’s pretty surreal, and I’m not sure I’ve properly processed it all yet,” said the 27-year-old.

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“Designing the cover of such a long standing, nationwide publication made me feel some pressure at first, but, as with most projects I do, I just tried to keep light and loose with it.

The cover of the Radio Times featuring Nina's work

“The main thing was to enjoy it, and I did.

“As far as I’m aware, it’s the first time a cover has been 100 per cent fully illustrated – logo and all – which is super exciting.”

Now Nina wants to encourage young artists to create their own cover images – with the winning design featured on the cover for the Queen’s official birthday.

“I think anyone and everyone has the ability to draw, but not everyone wants to and that’s fair enough,” said Nina, who has been illustrating full-time for the past five years.

“You can’t force yourself to be creative if it doesn’t feel right or very natural.

“That said, most children have an amazing ability to approach things loosely and imaginatively, so designing a front cover for the Radio Times would be a great project for any kid.

“They can just have fun with it, like I did.”

The designs will be judged on how creative, relevant and usable they are.

The competition is open to those under the age of 18.

To enter, either email [email protected], or post it along with name, address, age and phone number to: Radio Times Queen at 90 Competition, Immediate Media Company, Vineyard House, 44 Brook Green, London, W6 7BT.

Nina’s work will already be well known to many in Hastings.

Co-founding Hastings Illustration Festival, illustrating a hoarding depicting the history of Hastings Pier and festive window murals for businesses are only some of the projects the art enthusiast has worked on.

“I think, most importantly, you should try to enjoy it,” said Nina, who studied illustration and animation at Kingston University.

“You can still be serious about making work and have fun at the same time, and there is no such thing as a perfect drawing.

“It’s only perfect if you think it captures an energy or a moment well or gets a message across.

“If the first attempt isn’t working, do another one and then do ten more.

“Show it to people and get some opinions. Keep experimenting with it and eventually you will know when you like it because you will just feel it.”

To see more of Nina’s artwork visit or follow her on Twitter and Instagram @NinaCosford.

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