Beachcomber launches environmental art challenge

Written by: Pete Henshaw | Published:
Raising awareness: Rob Arnold at work collecting plastic from the beaches of Cornwall. He is to judge an art competition to mark Earth Day 2022

The story of Rob Arnold, a beachcomber, artist, and environmental activist, is being used to inspire pupils in a new art competition.

Children are being challenged to produce a piece of artwork to illustrate “my role in protecting the environment” as part of this year’s Earth Day celebrations.

To mark Earth Day 2022, which falls on April 22, the competition invites pupils aged from three and upwards to explore the story of Rob Arnold, who is based in Cornwall and who collects plastic waste and turns it into awareness-raising art.

After experiencing Rob’s story, pupils will then be asked to create their own artwork. The winning entry will be awarded a fully funded trip to a local beach for their class. The competition is being run by immersive story-telling organisation Lyfta.

In the story, Rob explains how he feels responsible for finding a solution to environmental challenges and so uses art as a way to raise awareness.

Schools can enter the competition for pupils individually, in pairs, groups, or as a whole class. Entries can be submitted as photos or videos of a range of art forms including painting, drawing, photography, sculpture and poetry.

The judges will include Rob himself, who will be looking for original, creative artwork, alongside a written explanation of each student’s inspiration in response to the theme.

The teaching resources for the competition are free for schools and can be used in lessons in the lead up to Earth Day and beyond, with entries open now and closing on May 27.

Rob said: “The competition is a wonderful opportunity for students to get creative and make a piece of art which reflects their feelings about protecting the environment, helping them to critically engage and realise the important role they play in safeguarding the planet.”

To enter, schools must register for a free Lyfta account to access the Beachcomber immersive story. Entries must then be sent via a submission form and both the judging and winner announcement will take place in early June.

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