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28 May 2009



I love these ads! I remember them from my youth...

Richard Gluck

When I was a kid around 9 or 10 years-old I thought that I might become and artist. I saw a matchbook with a pencil drawing of a cute deer. On the cover of the matchbook was the words, "Draw Winky". I thought, "Yeah, I can do that!" Inside was an application whereby I would be able to earn a scholarship to this "art school" if my sketch was good enough. I sent in my drawing in hopes of getting the scholarship to the art school. A few weeks later I got back a reply with a letter explaining that I did not get the scholarship that I could improve my drawing skills by taking classes from them. I didn't have the money to take classes so I just figured my art career would have to wait. A few months later I saw a similar offer where I could win a scholarship if I was able to draw "The Pirate". After much practice I sent in my entry with hopes that this time my art work was acceptable to win free lessons from the art school. A few weeks later I received a reply from the art school. The letter was straight to the point and explained, "We do NOT accept photocopies." Wow, I figured if I was THAT good at drawing maybe I didn't need art lessons after all.


That company is still around and they run ads on TV now. Does anyone know anyone who has taken that program?

They don't offer the prizes any more. Either they just dropped that or maybe the government made them stop since it just a way to get people to sign up for courses, not a real contest.

Paula Zargaj-Reynolds

I think this is the commercial you're referring to: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uz2nu4a1LyI


You don't win a scholarship or money anymore. They do have the program still however you have to pay for the art lessons no matter what.

Janice Hughes

You know what. I won first prize on that matchbook drawme contest!

My mom said it was a scam, and I always felt cheated out of something I wanted to do. I drew the deer perfectly. I wanted the courses but no had to do something else and didnt draw anymore. but wow hay.

Paula Zargaj-Reynolds

Janice, I always wondered if the contest was scam, too.

Janice Hughes

I wasnt aloud to pursue it. because was like 10-12 years old. but, they never tried to contact me what i know of anyway. Is there anyway I can find the winner's list because my sister's tried and didnt get a answer. my letter said that i won first place. other stuff was in the envelope but was able to see it how horrible of mother.

Janice Hughes

sorry. I wasn't able to see what else in the envelope None of other people drew them and never nothing came back. Only me

Steve Rodenbough

Hey Richard Gluck Same here! Winky, was perfect. Pirates were perfect. Rejections the same. I got the 'photocopy' thing on the second one. My mom still has the Red Setter dog hanging in her living room. 16x20 charcoal!
25 years in a photography business! I learned I had an eye, despite this art school playing games with the public! This rejection put me in construction for several decades, until I turned my hoppy into a business for the last 2 decades! These adds haunt me.

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Jeffrey Moche

I was always drawing when I was around 12 yrs old and would show my mother, but she was not encouraging. Actually I think she was right, although who knows what perseverance and inspiration would have yielded.
Anyway, one day I "drew winky" and sent it in, waiting anxiously for a response, but never heard back.
Then, almost to the day when I turned 18 I got a letter from them saying I showed promise and offering me to sign up for their program.
In other words, they couldn't have cared less about nourishing the artistic spirit of some young child, but instead waited until I was of legal age to authorize a payment. Unbelievable!


I love these incredible vintage ads! what a great collaboration!


and people paid that money amount for make pictures? oh my holy God! where I was when this happen? all my talent..totally wasted.

A Facebook User

Was this on a matchbook, too? It could have been the very advert that led Rhoda Morgenstern to art school, and Minneapolis, where it's cold, and she figured she'd keep better...

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