National Historic Ships Photo Competition 2013 opens on 1 April

National Historic Ships photo competition

National Historic Ships has fired the starting gun on its fourth photo competition aimed at photographers of all ages and dedicated to encouraging everyone to engage with historic vessels or maritime themes in their local area – but the organisers are particularly keen to interest the young.

There are prizes, including an overall prize of £1,000 to be awarded on a theme or activity involving a vessel from the National Register of Historic Vessels – good themes might include, restoration and repair, sailing, racing, coming into a mooring, or generally working around or enjoying the vessel.

Competition entries will be accepted online from 1 April to 31 August 2013.

For the first time, the competition this year includes a new category, ‘Faces of the sea’ in which the public will vote online.

Entrants also stand to win a small prize if their image is selected as one of a series of favourite images.

The competition’s ‘Young photographer’ category is supported by downloads aimed at younger children, including a whale-based wordsearch and a printable colouring page featuring classic sailing craft, both provided by the well known illustrator Claudia Myatt, who is also a competition sponsor. (See an earlier post about Claudia’s tips for drawing boats here.)

Schools and teachers are invited to get involved with the aim of inspiring children and families to find out more about maritime history. Posters for schools can be obtained from National Historic Ships via email at or by phone 020 8312 8558.

Claudia Myatt’s six top tips for maritime artists

Claudia Myatt sails

Claudia Myatt is a talented and highly effective maritime artist who knows how to conjure up a form in a few sweet lines – see some samples of her work here.

Her site also has a nice download of traditional boat drawings for kids to colour-in, which might provide some entertainment for children shut in due to all the bad weather we’ve been having.

Claudia has drawn up her six top tips for drawing and painting boats and ships. They sound like they could make all the difference to those of you draw well enough to find the experience rewarding – and if you do I can’t tell you how envious I am!

My thanks to regular reader and contributor Paul Mullings for leading me to this one.

Beale Park Boat Show: artist Claudia Myatt, Starfish Books and a coracle

Claudia Myatt Starfish Books

Artist and author Claudia Myatt has written to say she’ll be at the Beale Park Boat Show (10-12 June), where it seems her time will be divided between manning her Starfish Books stand, and messing about on the water.

‘Beale Park is the perfect antidote to big boat shows,’ she says. ‘It takes mixing business and pleasure to a fine art, which is why I spend as much time paddling my coracle on the lake as I do on the stand.’

Claudia has been exhibiting at the show since it began over ten years ago. Since then she has developed her Starfish Books range of colourful nautical designs, which now includes the Log Book for Little Ships and the popular Go Sailing series of children’s books commissioned by the RYA.

New for this year is RYA Go Green. Fun and colourful, it covers everything you need to know about the marine environment, from rivers to oceans, sharks to shopping. All Claudia’s books, cards and designs will be on the Starfish Books stand in the area of the show called the Marine Village – and colouring sheets will be available to entertain children while parents browse.

Finally, her website includes a nice child’s colouring-in drawing of boats on a lake that could easily have been inspired by the Beale Park show. If you’re bringing kids, why not print it out – I’m sure she’d like to see them nicely coloured-in at the show.

Claudia Myatt and her coracle