Tag Archives: cartoon workshops

ILLUSTRATION – KNOX CITY COUNCIL

PrintCommunity arts, health & well-being and education seem to be where I gravitate in my creative work.  Over the last 20 years I’ve often been engaged by councils, usually via their Community Arts or Community Development teams, to facilitate workshops, youth or community arts projects, or provide illustration such as promotional art, logo design & educational material.

In Tasmania, I’ve collaborated with at various times with Huon, Hobart, Kingborough, South Midlands & Glenorchy Councils since moving here in 2001.  As with teachers, I have great respect for the dedicated individuals who work at the forefront of community development.  They are often very caring, creative (and resourceful!) people who genuinely want to enable positive opportunities for their communities, despite the bureaucratic restraints of the system they work within.

From 2007 – 2016 I enjoyed a longstanding working relationship with Knox City Council’s community arts team, providing the branding for the annual Knox Arts Festival, illustration for various community education resources, and artwork for what became an award-winning public transport advocacy campaign.

KNOX COMMUNITY ARTS FESTIVAL (2007 – 2013)knox-2010-detail

I was first engaged by Knox in 2007 via Anthony McInneny, who I’d previously worked with on a Youth Arts project for Glen Eira Council.  I was asked to create a bold, colourful and slightly Seuss-ish look for the Knox Arts Festival marketing, and for the next 7 years this style continued as the festival brand.  Each year’s festival had a different theme that tied together community, diversity, environment and the arts.  My illustrations were used across all advertising materials, posters, postcards, programs, on canvas banners and even on aprons, T-shirts etc.  I also ran continuous cartooning workshops in Ferntree Gully library over the festival weekend.  There was something deliciously subversive about being almost completely anonymous at the event, surrounded by my artwork trumpeting itself all over the festival on banners, signage, and the like.

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KNOX WASTE EDUCATION PROGRAMPrint

In 2009, as part of Knox’s Waste Education program into the community and primary schools, I was asked to design a family of characters respresenting the 3 different household bins used in the Shire – ie household waste, recycling and green waste.  The Bin Family were used as mascots across various print media and on the Council’s website, and I also designed a deck of playing cards based on the ‘Happy Families’ card game of old, except the families were representing different categories of rubbish eg the Can family, the Bottle family, the Hard Waste family and so on.  The cards could be downloaded from the Council website, printed and stuck on cardboard, for school students to play with.

In fact the cards were a favourite with my own kids for many years.  They’re not on the Knox website anymore, but you can download the whole deck here (If you glue them onto fairly thick cardboard, the cards will last years – ours are still going!)

‘WHO’S ON BOARD’ PUBLIC TRANSPORT CAMPAIGN

i-want-youIn 2010, Knox Council’s communications team devised and delivered a public transport advocacy campaign titled ‘Who’s on Board?’, aimed at getting firm government commitments to better public transport in Melbourne’s east in the lead up to the 2011 State election.

Knox Council briefed me to design a central “mascot” character and a selection of supporting images around which all the marketing would be built.  The campaign was a huge success. It generated enormous community interest and media coverage and would go on to win the Best Communication Award at the 2012 Government Communications Australia awards.

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In the award submission prepared in support of ‘Who’s on Board?’ (download here), you can see some of the far-reaching applications of the mascot (named Barney Boardman in a Knox schools competition).  I was surprised to note that while the document acknowledges that their decision to use cartoons was integral in their marketing strategy (as a way of engaging the community in a potentially dry campaign), nowhere in the document am I credited as the artist.  There is a passing mention of the artwork being created “in-house”, which is incorrect: Council out-sourced the art to a professional illustrator (me) who lives interstate and was probably a cheaper option than local illustrators.  Sadly this reflects common attitudes about freelance cartoon illustration – that in being “merely” functional, it’s not a particularly valued artform or skill, and the artist’s contribution is expected to remain anonymous unless of course you generate some kind of celebrity for yourself…an option I’ve always found unappealing as I’m really not of a chestbeating temperament.

ROAD SAFETY BOOKLETknox-road-safety-4-detail

I like commercial illustration jobs that involve some element of education, that require a clarity of line in order to communicate an immediate message, in a style that is perhaps innocuous but warm enough for people to connect with the content.  As an artist who is no stranger to creative complexity, I relish bringing deliberate economy to this style of cartoon drawing, making every small symbol or cliche matter, a hand, a glance in a particular direction, the space between two lines, finding balance with minimal expression.

This particular brief, a booklet on Road Safety for families dropping off / picking up their kids from school,  was all the more satisfying because it was about keeping kids safe – something I feel very passionate about.

Professionally, I was challenged by the fact that in the 80s another cartoonist had already illustrated essentially the same booklet, which Knox Council had supplied me & were really just asking me to copy and “update” his work.  I felt a moral tangle – solidarity with the previous cartoonist, compassion and yet guilt at my own betrayal, concerns about copyright, my desperate need to pay bills and my disgust at it all being reduced to money and survival.  As I applied my own skills to the job, I wondered a lot about the other cartoonist and his life, and this added a whole other depth to my process.

Well, someone has to care about these things, at least momentarily, because generally most people don’t….

Once again, despite my signature on all the drawings and the fact that the booklet is comprised entirely of nothing but artwork, there was no creative credit for myself or the previous artist –  “produced by the Local Laws Department, Knox Council”.  Perhaps I am a Department of Laws unto myself?

You can download the booklet here if you wish to share it with your school.  Personally I think the booklet is a fantastic idea and relevant to the safety of all our young kids.

RESIDENTS RATES BROCHURE

Earlier this year, Knox produced a brochure for residents of the Shire, outlining a breakdown of  where spending of rates was occurring.  I provided an assortment of generic images that were then placed in the brochure.  Knox got the design idea from another council’s rates brochure, but I do think they did a better job on the design of this one, much warmer and user-friendly.

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SIDEWALK MOBILITY POSTCARDS

My last job for the Knox team was this series of illustrations which became postcards delivered to Knox residents.  The drawings basically depict before / after scenarios reminding residents to keep their gardens off the sidewalks so that people in wheelchairs, scooters, walking frames, strollers etc can enjoy a more pleasant mobile experience as they traverse the suburban thoroughfares.

 

 

APRIL 2016 CARTOON INTENSIVES @ Cooper Screen Academy, Hobart

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CARTOON INTENSIVES @ COOPER SCREEN ACADEMY

10am – 3pm | ages 9 – 14 only (why?) | $100 per workshop |Cooper Screen Academy, 131 Macquarie St, Hobart

Limited to 12 spaces only!

BOOKINGS: bradfield@bradfielddumpleton.com | 0413 575 113

PLEASE NOTE:  These 5-hr drawing intensives are for keen drawers, who are happy being immersed in drawing for long periods of time.  Each session is 5 hours long, including a short lunchbreak.  Please ensure your child brings PLENTY of food & drink for the day.

If you think your child will have difficulty focusing on drawing for that long, please find them a more suitable activity as this is not a childcare program!

Bradfield’s School of Cartoon Artistry workshops provide an inspiring, thought-provoking & relaxing creative learning experience.  Students are encouraged to think about their process as they draw, to learn from each other & extend beyond their usual drawing habits.  Observation, line control & technique, focusing & making new connections are just some of the skills developed.  These techniques apply to all styles of drawing.

Bradfield is a professional arts educator & illustrator, and has been inspiring children of all ages for over 25 years.

WED APR 20 GROSS’N’GHOULLY

How do you get that snot to drip just right?  Or the flesh to peel convincingly off that zombie?  Advanced techniques for drawing really disgusting stuff!

Check out this gallery of drawings from other Gross’N’Ghoully workshops!


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THU APR 21CRITTERS’N’BEASTIES

Learn some simple but sophisticated techniques for creating your own creatures, real or imagined.  Skin textures (fur, armour, feathers etc), shading, animal anatomy (legs, tails, wings etc) – whether your style is cute, cartoony or realistic / fantasy, these techniques will really help to bring your creature drawings to life!

Check out this gallery of drawings from other Critters’N’Beasties workshops!

SEPT 2015 2-DAY CARTOON INTENSIVE

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2-DAY WORKSHOP:  JOURNEY TO THE CENTRE OF YOUR MIND!!!

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See drawings from last July’s Journey hereMELBOURNE and HOBART.

TUES SEPT 29 & WED SEPT 30 @ Cooper Screen Academy, Hobart

10am – 2pm | $100 | ages 9 – 14 only (why?)

A 2-Day Creative Cartooning intensive for experienced drawers, using thINK drawing games to experiment with creative cartoon techniques, as we investigate the question:

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Day 1:  Students will be mentored through a professional illustration process – discussing the concept, sharing ideas & experimenting with their own, making visual notes & developing concept drawings, planning a design for their final image.

Day 2:  Students will make any final adjustments to their idea, then take their design to finished art stage,  a black & white ink drawing on quality art paper (suitable for framing later if they wish), which they can scan and have featured in issue #5 of THUNKCheck out previous issues of THUNK here!

As usual, I’ll provide drawing games & “experiments” to get the kids thinking in new ways about drawing technique, and to push them into new areas of their own creativity.  I’ll also be offering professional tips based on my years as a designer & illustrator.  The focus is on fun skills, new perspectives, and creative inspiration.

SOUNDS SERIOUS? Well yes & no!  My aim in this workshop is for the students to gain a better understanding of a professional artist process, to take an idea and try it from different angles so that it has room to grow and refine.  This workshop is about still being spontaneous with ideas, but also taking more care in how they are put to paper.

BOOKINGS:  bradfield@bradfielddumpleton.com | 0413 575 113

PLEASE NOTE:  These 4-hr drawing intensives are for keen drawers, who enjoy being immersed in drawing for long periods of time.  Each session is 4 hours long, including a light lunchbreak.  Please ensure your child brings enough food & drink for the day.  If you think your child will have difficulty focusing for that long, please find them a more suitable activity as this is not a childcare program!

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8-WEEK CRITTERS @ MAC, TERM 4 – HOBART

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TERM 4 begins OCT 21 | 27 Albert Rd, Moonah

WEDNESDAYS | 4 – 6pm | Ages 9 – 14 | $200

Can you help spread the word?  Download & print this poster  for your local shop or school!

CRITTERS – real or imagined, they offer endless opportunities to explore creative drawing skills.  In Term 4 this course will focus on animal bits, textures, body shapes, dynamics, and students will create their own menagerie of CRITTER characters – CRITTER in this case being anything from cute bunny to seven-headed bogmonster.

You can see some drawings on this theme by other students here.

This course is for more experienced drawers who want to:
– develop greater confidence & line control
– explore some new ways of thinking about drawing
– learn professional techniques for developing their own ideas & creating original cartoon art

Students will use cartooning to look at important foundations of drawing such as form, texture, energy, patterns, contrast, design, layers & use of space.  The thINK Drawing Process I’ve developed also reinforces sequential and creative thinking skills.

These techniques apply to all styles of drawing.

Bradfield’s School of Cartoon Artistry classes provide an inspiring, thought-provoking & relaxing creative learning experience.  Students are encouraged to think about their process as they draw, to learn from each other & extend beyond their usual drawing habits.  Observation, line control & technique, focusing & making new connections are just some of the skills developed.

Limited to 12 spaces only!

Please book early to ensure the course goes ahead:

bradfield@bradfielddumpleton.com | 0413 575 113

Bradfield is a professional arts educator & illustrator, and has been inspiring children of all ages for over 25 years.

TERM 4 2015 A4

6-WEEK CREATIVE CARTOONING COURSE / Apr 22 – May 27

TERM 2 2015 A4

DRAW YOUR WILDEST IMAGININGS!

@ MOONAH ARTS CENTRE, 27 Albert St, Moonah

It’s back!  I’m very pleased to be able to offer another after-school Creative Cartooning Course in Term 2, this time at the fantastic new Moonah Arts Centre!  Last year’s Courses were very well-received, with the students really extending their skills & developing their own ideas into some amazing artwork.  All the students had their drawings published in issues 1 & 2 of the THUNK mini-comic, and you can see some of the excellent results here & here.

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TERM 2 begins APR 22
WEDNESDAYS | 4 – 6pm | Ages 9 – 14 | $200

This course is for keen drawers who want to:
– develop greater confidence & line control
– explore some new ways of thinking about drawing
– learn professional techniques for developing their own ideas & creating original cartoon art

THUNK2.7

Students will use cartooning to look at the foundations of drawing such as form, texture, energy, patterns, contrast, design, layers & use of space.  The thINK Drawing Process that I have developed also reinforces sequential thinking and helps the students to develop their creative thinking.

These techniques apply to all styles of drawing.

Bradfield’s School of Cartoon Artistry classes provide an inspiring, thought-provoking & relaxing creative learning experience.  Students are encouraged to think about their process as they draw, to learn from each other & extend beyond their usual drawing habits.  Observation, line control & technique, focusing & making new connections are just some of the skills developed.

Limited to 12 spaces only!

Bookings: bradfield@bradfielddumpleton.com | 0413 575 113

Bradfield is a professional arts educator & illustrator, and has been inspiring children of all ages for over 25 years.

THUNK1.35

 

 

KIDS LIKE US – vital work for (twice) exceptional kids

KLU GALA INVITE

APR SUN 19 – KIDS LIKE US (Sandringham)

On Sunday April 19 I’ll have the pleasure of continuing some drawing exploration with a small but highly-creative & enthusiastic group of young people from Kids Like Us.  This will be our third gathering, and I’m really looking forward to seeing where the journey takes us this time.

Kids Like Us Australia are a small and passionate team of people working to help children who are “twice exceptional” – kids who have highly specialised gifts but also live with challenges such as dyslexia, autism, aspergers, ADHD, anxiety & depression.  These kids process the world in remarkable & highly creative ways, but are often misunderstood in mainstream education.

This year I am excited to be running some workshops using the thINK drawing process with some of the more visually-oriented KLUA students.

I have also been designing some illustrations for KLUA, including the ubiquitous Bowler Hat, who is to represent their Ambassador program.

If you’d like to attend their Annual Gala Fundraising event in May, or would like to support the vital work KLUA are doing, please contact them!

 

Hobart, September 3, 4 & 6 2013 – Friends School, Yr 7s

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September 3, 4 & 6, 2013

Four years ago, the Friends School (Secondary Campus) in Hobart approached me about running my Creative Communication cartoon workshops with their Year 7s, as part of their Connections program.  Over three days I worked with all the Year 7 home groups, a different group each day, and about 50 students in each group.  What was especially wonderful was that I was given a WHOLE DAY with each group – sheer luxury!  This meant there was plenty of time to run a very comprehensive program, covering facial expressions & body language, as well as many extension exercises such as applying the techniques to comic strips and a simple animation.

Since that first mini-residency, Friends have invited me back each year to work with the Yr 7s, and this year was my fourth visit.  I have always been very impressed with the students here, they have always seemed very switched on, engaged & responsive, and often very confident in their thinking, but nothing prepared me for the amazing response from this year’s group.

The majority of the students were highly creative & skilled in their interpretations of the cartoons I drew with them, spontaneously adapting the ideas to their own characters, and embellishing their drawings with colour and all kinds of fantastic details.  I was stunned at how creative this whole group were, and it was incredibly inspiring!  I’ll let the drawings speak for themselves – I just love how distinct the styles are.  Thanks once again to Friends for inviting me back, and to the teachers for their fantastic support.

FACIAL EXPRESSIONS

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COMIC STRIP

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BODY LANGUAGE – THE WHISPERING SCENARIO

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BODY LANGUAGE – THE LAUGHING SCENARIO

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And we even had time for some random requests as a bit of fun to finish the day – depressed pandas, sad elephants, creepy fat guys, goofy unicorns, just the usual…….(!)

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Launceston, August 6 2013 – Scotch Oakburn College

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August 6 2013

I always welcome the opportunity to travel a bit in Tassie & visit schools a bit further afield, it rekindles my sense of adventure and reminds me how much stunning country there is to appreciate in this state.  And it’s always a pleasure to return to a school I’ve visited before, I like the sense of continuity.  In this case, I got both – I had been invited back to Scotch Oakburn College by Jan Petterwood, to work with the Grade 5/6 students as I did last year.  The focus was the Creative Communication program, working with two large groups for half a day each.  The kids were fantastic, really receptive, attentive and enthusiastic, and really responsive to the workshop content.  They had already been exploring cartoon art with their teachers, so they were well-primed by the time I got there.

Thanks to the teachers for all your help taking photos & for making me so welcome, and thanks to the kids for your enthusiastic attention!

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Cygnet Early Childhood Artist-In-Residence, July 2013

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July 22 – 30, 2013

Hot on the heels of July’s school holiday workshops, I hurtle headlong into a week-long Artist Residency!  Last year the unstoppable Mirjam Holthuis from Cygnet Community Childrens Centre (CCCC) was successful in securing a grant to employ three local artists from the Cygnet area, including myself.  Each of the artists were asked to offer creative experiences to the kindergarten students at the three local Primary Schools – St James, Cygnet Primary & Peregrine Community School, plus some younger children from the CCCC.

I have been living in the Cygnet (TAS) area since 2007, and have worked with Cygnet PS and Peregrine on many occasions, teaching both cartoon drawing & percussion.  It was Cygnet PS music teacher, the remarkable Katherine Fairs-Morris, who first prompted  me to teach percussion on a regular basis, which led to me directing two successful Cygnet community drumming groups for 4 years.

So when Mirjam invited me to submit a proposal for the residency, I jumped at the chance to re-engage with my local school communities.  With the project aimed at mostly 5 yr olds, I decided to offer a smorgasboard of creative experiences over 3 x one-hour sessions with each kinder group.

prgne drums montage

Session 1 was an interactive rhythm / percussion prgne drums 3experience, in which I introduced the kidlets to an array of (mostly African) drums: djembe, dundun, talking drum, darbukka, cajon (& balafon), plus a selection of miscellaneous tribal percussion toys including agogo bells, seed shakers, shekere, woodblocks, tibetan bells and more.  We talked about how each instrument has a different voice, how they resonate to create sound, and a little about where each instrument originated, and the various materials they’re made from.  The kids of course were busting to make some noise, so I followed this up with some interactive rhythm games – exploring vocal sounds & rhythms, and co-ordinating hand-clapping & foot-stomping rhythms.  Then we translated these simple rhythms to the instruments themselves, and I was amazed at how well the kids held it together – no mean feat for that age!  We had a ball and made a truly joyous racket!

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cyg mus 1Session 2 was more of a listening experience –  I introduced the kidlets to some of the stringed instruments I play: a European mandolin, a Russian balalaika, and three different varieties of ukulele, including a metal resonator uke.  I talked a little about each instrument’s origin, about how sound resonates in the sound box, and the unique voice of each instrument (picture of appreciative audience at right).

I demonstrated a few exotic styles of instrumental music from around the world, and played a few silly kids songs that I wrote for my own kids years ago.  The kids were hilarious & such a delight as they joined in!  Here’s one of them:

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The Cygnet Primary kids followed up this session with DIY instruments using papier mache & rubber bands.  And the Peregrine School kids reflected on their session by creating drawings of the instruments I had played, which they then compiled into a book and presented to me as a thank you gift.  Thanks guys!

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Session 3 was a cartoon drawing workshop – a simplified version of the facial expressions workshop I use in the Creative Communication program.  Again I was surprised at how well the kids interpreted my suggestions, as guided drawing is often too challenging for this age.  We drew (and pulled!) some expressive faces and discussed a few different emotions as we drew them together.

Some feedback from Cygnet Primary teacher Judi Rhodes:  “During the cartooning workshop the children stayed focused and on task for at least an hour which is a very long time for 4 year olds! They loved drawing the faces with different emotions. Lots of parents have commented on the detailed and quirky drawing that their children have produced…they simply can’t believe that their children have done them!!”

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Judi’s kids compiled their face drawings into personal books for further reflection in class.  They looked fantastic!

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The last session for the residency was with the Cygnet kinders and we finished off on a relaxed note, with me drawing a few cartoon requests – in this pic they asked for an octopus, and then kids took turns in suggesting what each tentacle was holding!

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For many years my work in schools has been mostly focused on middle to upper primary & secondary ages, so it was really refreshing to return to this age group and PLAY – thanks so much to Mirjam Holthuis and the Cygnet Community Childrens Centre for enabling me to participate in this residency, to the fantastic and dedicated staff at Peregrine, St James & Cygnet schools (and the CCCC!) for all your help & enthusiasm, and of course to all the gorgeous preps and kinders who were such a delight to work with!

 

Melbourne June 2013 – Wesley College

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Mon June 17 – Fri June 21, 2013

In 2001, Wesley College approached me to design a cartooning workshop program addressing bullying, for inclusion in a Yr 7 Resilience Program the college was piloting, and which incorporated many other materials such as drama, video, discussion, writing etc.  When Wesley approached me with the commission I had just completed my year-long residency at Pembroke Primary under the mentorship of Kate Perkins (see Yarra Rd PS post), in which Kate & I had used cartooning throughout the school community to address various aspects of emotional communication.

And for the last 12 years since, the Glen Waverley campus of Wesley College have very generously invited me back as Cartoonist-In-Residence, to run the Creative Communication program with the entire Yr 7 contingent each year.  For a whole week, I take the 6 Home groups for 2 sessions of around an hour each, drawing facial expressions, body language, and discussing ideas about respect, bullying, stereotypes etc.  This year, Yr 7 Leader Penny Mudge worked her magic on the timetabling so that every group got an extra third session – more time to play, and to extend on some of the usual skills I teach in these sessions.  In the first session, as usual, we covered facial expressions, but when it came to the second session (drawing scenarios demonstrating body language) the students creativity really began to shine through.  Here are some of the fantastic results:

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In all these examples, we drew everyday scenarios that the kids could relate to.  I always deliberately leave out any details that identify the gender of the characters, so that the students can explore stereotypical thinking, and how the nuances of the story can change depending on what gender is allocated to each characters.  It’s always fascinating to see how the students respond to stereotypes like “Boys don’t cry”, “Girls don’t bully boys”, “boys don’t comfort each other” etc.  After discussing these ideas based on the genderless characters we’ve drawn, the students can then assign the characters whatever gender they want on their own drawing.

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In the extra third sessions, we looked at a simple comic strip format, to tell a story between two characters entirely through their facial expressions, without text.  The students are encouraged to think about interpersonal dynamics, sequential story-telling, and how life can offer unexpected outcomes depending on how we respond in the moment!

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WES 10Thanks again Wesley College for having me back all these years!  Thanks also to Penny for doing such a fantastic job of co-ordinating a tricky timetable, and to the awesome Yr 7 students who are always a pleasure to work with!  You guys rock!

Melbourne June 2013 – Rowville Secondary College

RWVLLE 2AThurs June 13 & Fri June 14, 2013

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.  Eg:RWVLLE 3A

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

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Melbourne June 2013 – Yarra Rd PS

YRPS 1Tues June 11 2013 – Landed in Melbourne from Tasmania on the ferry first thing in the morning (boat-lagged!) for a two-week teaching binge, and headed straight over to Yarra Rd Primary School in Nth Croydon to spend a fantastic day catching up again with Grades 3 – 6.  But first….

Rewind to March of this year:  principal Kate Perkins (dear friend & significant teaching mentor to me back in the 90s) asked me to do a week-long Artist In Residence at Yarra Rd PS, running the Creative Communication workshops from Kinders to 6.  The week was a fantastic success on many levels – apart from being loads of fun, the kids surprised us all with the amount of latent creative talent that suddenly had a forum for expression (given that the school has been largely – and successfully – sports-focused for many years). Kids were running up to me in the playground, eager to show me sketchbooks bursting with the most wonderful drawings.  It was quite an honour!

These sorts of residencies are always a wonderful opportunity for me to also become a part of the school community, the kids get to know me better, and working across all grades helps plant the seeds of a drawing culture within the school.  Not only are kids inspired to share their drawing skills within their grade, but siblings can share the experience as well.  When I first collaborated with Kate in the 90s, she was principal of Pembroke Primary in Mooroolbark (VIC) and she had the same vision of a drawing culture within that school – Kate is passionate about Creativity in Education, and its important links with personal development & well-being.  Kids need creativity!

During this year’s March residency I also ran some lunchtime “masterclasses” for a few small groups of select students, and began some collaborative work with Shirley Robertson, the school’s Student Welfare co-ordinator, to develop some cartoon art that will complement some resources Shirley’s developing about emotional communication & well-being in the school.

This has so far included a series of “Faces” cards, 12 cartoon faces expressing various emotions, which are used with the younger grades to gauge how the kids are feeling from day to day – a kind of open-ended emotional check-in, where the kids can choose a card that represents their current state.  An example:

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I’ve also designed a logo for their schoolwide “Mateship Program”, encouraging students to look out for each other, and we’re developing other resources looking at personal space & boundaries.

YPRS matesship logoAnyway, back to Tuesday’s visit:  as soon as I arrived, students greeted me with “Hello Bradfield!” – it was such a lovely feeling to be remembered!  I had Grades 5/6 first up, and we extended on the previous workshops with looking at sequential cartoon art (comic strip) as a way of communicating a simple story without any text ie two characters interacting, and telling their story through their facial expressions.  The kids were fantastic, and we rounded off the sessions with my (almost) famous flipbook technique (more on that elsewhere!).  The rest of the day was with the 3/4s, and we extended on the March workshops, looking at a few simple techniques for getting distance, backgrounds & perspective into a comic strip (see photos below).   I was very impressed with how well the students grasped the concepts and their enthusiasm was incredibly rewarding!

All of which tied in perfectly with the day’s timetabled visual literacy units (an unscheduled synchronicity)!

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