Melbourne June 2013 – Rowville Secondary College


Another really rewarding 2-day visit to Rowville Secondary, one of my favourite schools to visit (yes, I know, I’m not supposed to have favourites!).  This is the fourth year running that I’ve been invited to run the Creative Communication workshops there, thanks to the wonderful leader of the Arts Faculty, Robyn Geake.  Each year that I’ve been to Rowville, I’ve worked mostly with a select group of Yr 7 (RIA) students who specialise in various areas of the arts.  We were very fortunate to be timetabled a 4-period block (almost a full day!), which gives us plenty of time to relax into the content – ie emotional communication through drawing facial expressions & body language.  One thing I especially enjoy about the RIA groups is that all the students are already creatively switched-on, that is, I can speak to them directly as artist to artist, in a more creative language.  What’s also interesting is that only a small portion of the group are ever visual arts – mostly they are drama / dance / music focused, drawing is still generally a challenge for most of them.  But thinking laterally, creatively, emotionally, spatially, is very natural to them.  I love being able to convey to them the connections between disciplines – how dance is a kind of linemaking in space through movement, or how injecting expression & personality into a cartoon character is just like embodying a character as an actor.

Thanks to Robyn Geake and Rowville Secondary for inviting me back again, and thanks to the wonderful, responsive students there!