Eyes on Philip at Art Prize | PHOTOS

It was a fateful night of television which led Philip Lewis to winning the Hummock Hill Art Prize.

"I had been dabbling in water colour and I just happened to be sitting down in front of the TV ... I was watching an interview with (Australian artist) Ben Quilty," he said.

"He was very passionate and animated, talking about Afghanistan and the Bali Nine ... I thought I'd take some pictures with my phone."

Mr Lewis took around 15-20 photos, then chose seven which stood out the most and painted them on canvas to capture the different emotions communicated through Ben's expressions.

"I wanted to use a little bit of paint to capture his personality ... it was the eyes that gave the personality and emotion away," he said."

This stood out to judge Teresa Ramsey, who noted that the painting was able to convey varying emotions while using a limited amount of pigment - evidence of a high level of talent.

Mr Lewis was unable to attend the opening but when he found out through a phone call, he was stunned at being declared the winner.

"I was gobsmacked, after looking at some of the pieces on display there's some really good artworks here ... I liked my painting but I didn't think anyone else would look at it that way," he said.

The Young Emerging Art Prize went to 17-year-old Justine Vlachoulis, who used the powerful contrast of a black-and-white flower background and a colourful woman to wow the judges.

Her piece was one of the assignments she had worked on in her Year 12 art class, and she was encouraged by her mother Elpida to submit it for the Hummock Hill Art Prize.

"It was the first time I'd done a proper painting ... I wanted to do a piece that your eyes would be drawn to because there's a lot going on," Justine said.

"There's a photo of my Mum that inspired me, she has the same black and white hair and she has a lovely face so I ended up using her as the reference."

Retired boilermaker Paul Ellins received the Industrial Art Prize for his welded cuttlefish that comprised of a bike chain, old shovel, flat bar and many more other metal pieces.

"It was surprising to take out the prize, I've won a couple in Tasmania, so it's great that people like it," he said.

Lastly Whyalla Art Group President Eileen Jones' "Hands of Wisdom" piece was voted the People's Choice Award at the end of the night.

Secretary Terissa Shepherd said around 95 people attended the exhibition over a three-hour period, with a great number of participants in the art prize as well.

"The exhibition is open for a month, on Saturday we had some more people come through and we've made some sales as well which is great," she said.

To see the wonderful work submitted for the Hummock Hill Art Prize, visit the Darling Terrace Art Gallery.