Young Falkirk artist's coronavirus drawing goes viral

An image capturing the view of the current UK situation by a local youngster has been shared hundreds of thousands of times online.

Wednesday, 8th April 2020, 8:31 am
Updated Wednesday, 8th April 2020, 8:31 am

The artwork of an 11-year-old Falkirk boy has gone viral.

The image of how Kieran Watson sees the situation in the UK at the moment amidst the coronavirus pandemic has been shared more than 170,000 times on social media.

And it’s been liked by Harry Potter creator JK Rowling and TV presenter Lorraine Kelly.

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The drawing features a map of the UK being held up by a paramedic, a hospital staff member and a scientist.

The names of other proffesions Kieran believes to be essential in dealing with the health crisis such as carers, retail staff, volunteers and HGV drivers also feature.

The country’s reaction to the drawing online has come as a surprise to the family.

Mum Jennifer explained: “I asked him to draw me something as I was kind of worried because he was watching the news daily, looking it up on his phone to see the infection rates and death rates, the comparisons with other countries, why we were on lockdown.

Kieran Watson with his drawing that has gone viral.

“I asked him to draw me something about how he was feeling and this is what he drew.

“I put it on Facebook and so did my sister in law and my father in law. My sister in law also put it on Twitter.

“And it’s gone from there.

“It’s had thousands of shares and even JK Rowling and Lorraine Kelly have commented on it.

“I was just expecting a couple of other mums to say ‘that’s really nice’. I wasn’t expecting anything like this.”

Kieran said he is “shocked” at the reaction his drawing has sparked: “I didn’t expect it to go this viral. I just drew what I was thinking.”

His inspiration came after seeing a photograph of health workers holding up an American flag.

When the Westquarter Primary pupil discovered JK Rowling had commented on his drawing he said he was “speechless”.

“It is really surreal to think the woman who created the fantastic Harry Potter thinks my picture is good.”

There have been a lot of comments about his artwork on social media with many describing it as “fantastic”, “incredible”, “inspirational”, “amazing” and “moving”.

As a result he’s received a lot of “well done” messages too.

The family know that the image has been spread far, but the true reach of Kieran’s drawing is not actually known.

Jennifer added: “It’s hard to know exactly how many shares it’s had.

“There have been 1000 on my original post on Facebook but people have taken it off Twitter and then shared it themselves and put it in a lot of Facebook groups.

“So we literally don’t know how many times it’s been shared, but I think it’s probably had between 185,000 and 200,000 shares.

“We’ve had messages from a lot of people saying they love it.

“We’ve had graphic designers offer to re-do it for us, someone wanting to make t-shirts with it on, someone had said about trying to put it on the new 50p coin.

“It’s gone crazy and it really is all because I wanted to make sure he was okay and I didn’t want him to focus on death rates, so he drew something positive.

“The response has been amazing.”

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