CHILDREN from across Cornwall and the country are being encouraged to put pen to paper or paint to canvas and take part in the Big Art and Storytelling Tall Ships Project which was officially launched this week.

Falmouth’s John Dyer is the artist in residence for this summer’s Falmouth to Royal Greenwich Tall Ships Regatta and has unveiled his official painting for the event which is central to the art and storytelling competition.

Four writers, Damian Dibben, author of the History Keepers; National Theatre playwright, James Graham; hip hop poet, Maxwell Golden and Cornish storyteller, Paul Farmer, have had the chance to view the painting and have interpreted it by writing their own stories, poems and plays.

Children are being invited to get involved by creating their own paintings, stories, plays or poems using the work of the professionals as inspiration. Falmouth Art Gallery will also be hosting a series of free arts workshops for schools to engage with the project.

All the submitted work will be celebrated and displayed on an online interactive gallery and the top 200 art entries, together with a selection of writing, will be displayed at the Maritime Museum in Falmouth during the Tall Ships Regatta in August.

The 24 top prize winners will be invited to attend John Dyer’s Tall Ships exhibition event at the museum on August 30 to see their work on show and receive their prizes which will include the John Dyer’s official limited edition print for the regatta.

At the official launch of the project, John Dyer said: “It is a privilege to be asked to be the artist in residence for the Tall Ships Regatta and to have the opportunity to inspire a generation of children across Cornwall and the UK to engage in this spectacular event.

“Having five professional storytellers writing about my painting is awesome. The way they have written and brought the painting to life is magical and inspirational.

“Children have the visual influence and the written influence to create a project that is truly special and unique.”

The project’s creative producer, John Frankland, who brought the writers to the project, added: “It’s really exciting that we have got writers communicating and interpreting a painting. It’s a huge creative stimulus for schools and hopefully it’s going to have a huge reaction.”

The competition is open to children aged 16 and under and the closing date for entries is August 1. For full details of how to get involved go to

The Falmouth Tall Ships Regatta will take place from August 28 to 31 when over 40 sail training vessels from around the world will be in Falmouth ahead of the Falmouth to Greenwich race.

For full details of all that is planned for the eventt visit