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Messy Journalling












Russell McKane is a visual artist in the areas of Painting, Photography and Silversmithing, and has taught art in secondary education for a long time. He began teaching journalling to students well before it became a requirement in all arts education. Russell has been keeping his own art journals, now numbering over thirty, for 35 years.


Messy Journalling - pm

Learn new ways of using your visual journal and work to free you up. We will record ideas, draw and make drawing notes, brainstorm, doodle and explore. We will use it to record live events and things of interest, and extend ourselves as the artist. Visual journalling has become common practice in the last thirty years, but is it serving you - the artist - and is it for you and your eyes only.


Russell was one of the first to use visual journals in the classroom in Australia but has since seen them become tools of assessment and now nearly every course wants a journal.


This elective is not going to help you to get a better mark, rather it breaks down the tyranny of journalling that can stifle your creativity and return it to a process that serves you - the artist.



  • Lead pencils 2H - 6B+ (have a range, min HB, 2B and 4B)

  • Any colour pencils or pens you have lying around (fine liners or ink, but not textas)

  • Hard bound art journal (not spiral bound) 

- portrait or landscape as you prefer

- blank pages

- acid free paper - 80gsm cartridge or similar (not hand made papers - too soft)

- A4, or smaller if a more 'details' person (A5)

- don't spend too much or you will not treat it with the disrespect it deserves!

  • Set of watercolour pencils if you don't already have some (a cheap Staedtler set is fine)

  • Watercolour brush for activating water colour pencils (golden hair - round size six)

  • One water soluble graphite pencil or a range if you prefer (eg Faber Castell Graphite Aquarelle - 2B)


  • One sheet A2 hot pressed watercolour paper - 185gms - this will be folded for an activity and Express Posted in an A4 envelope.

Additional Fee: $20

Max & min numbers apply, make sure you indicate a second choice for afternoon elective when registering in case your first choice is unavailable

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