Student Testimonials

Community Testimonials

Queensland Art Teachers' Association (QATA)

I would like to thank Richard Gillespie and Arts & Creative Media for the art resources/equipment you have given us to share with schools in our region. I can assure you they will be put to good use and are very much appreciated.

Christina Papadimitriou, Coordinator - QATA (NQ) March 2015

Dance North

Just a quick note to thank you very much for arranging the deal with the piano.We are delighted with it and there were great compliments from Jane Rutter’s pianist who is the conductor for an orchestra in Hong Kong.It will add an enormous advantage to potential clients who wish to hire the space.Indeed the classical fraternity is very excited.

Trevor Keeling, General Manager, Dance North. March 2014

Dance North

We were thrilled to recently receive the most generous donation of lighting from the old Cowshed at James Cook University. This represents an enormous contribution to our aging lighting system. Not only has it enabled us to put out to pasture some rather antiquated and obsolete items, but it also greatly increases our capacity for producing better lighting design.

In addition, we are equally pleased to continue our sponsorship relationship with Creative Arts at JCU, in particular in the development of the Dance North School of Arts as a viable theatre and performance space in Townsville CBD. Creative Arts at JCU supports the the Arts by providing performance grade pianos when we have visiting artists. Recently, we hosted an Opera Queensland workshop series and performance which involved both young people and the over 50s who performed with artists from Opera Queensland. This was a great success, no doubt assisted in no small way with the piano that was sponsored by JCU.

Trevor Keeling, General Manager, Dance North. August 2012

Townsville Multicultural Support Group Inc

On Behalf of the Townsville Refugee Week Planning Committee and the Townsville Multicultural Support Group Inc. (TMSG), we wish to thank Creative Arts at JCU for the immense support provided to the activities planned during the week June 17th-June 22nd. The provision of venue, facilities and equipment for an ABC Open workshop with people who have settled here through the Humanitarian Support Program was appreciated. The outcome of the workshop was the production of audio and visual presentations which were screened at the launch of Refugee Week in the City Sunday markets at Flinders Square and throughout the week. The resource is avbailable on the TMSG website and is already proving to be a valuable educational resource for the community in general. We are also grateful for SoCA lecturer, Adam Brown’s donation of time throughout the week.

Meg Davis, Townsville Refugee Week Planning Committee, July 2012

Music Teachers’ Association of Queensland

Our concert last Saturday went really well – your Rehearsal Room is a great venue for our concerts and we really appreciate your help. I know we will be looking to make more bookings next year.

President, Townsville Branch, Margaret Fitzgerald, June 2012

Labyrinthine Productions

I wanted to thank you on behalf of Labyrinthine Productions for all of the help that you guys gave us for our event last night. If it wasn't for your time and efforts we would not have come close to having a successful event. Elly - Thank you for not only your efforts in promoting our event and helping us get organised, but thank you SO much for donating your time. Richard - Thank you for all of your efforts to ensure that we had all of the equipment we needed and for all of the last minute running around, phone calls and tracking down of essential parts. Mitch - Thanks heaps for being one of the raddest lecturers I have had, for donating your time to our event last night and being so supportive. We put this together in 13 days (how I have no idea) and it was a complete success, we reached our target of $1500. We had over 180 people attend and apart from the few sound hiccups we had with the first 2 bands, everything ran smoothly. Nikki Trautmann , 3 rd year NMA, 2011

Northern Beaches SHS

Thank you for allowing us to showcase the Photography project – 2011. It was a wonderful opportunity for our students. Richard’s help with the installation of the photographs was also very much appreciated. Christina Papadimitriou, Northern Beaches SHS , Dec 2011

Pimlico State High School

In senior visual art, only a small number of students ever choose to specialise in the time-based media area of film.Over the last 2 years, the Northern Lights Film Festival has provided a valuable opportunity to promote and celebrate the innovative works of these young film makers in an environment beyond the school context.This event has also given these emerging artists the chance to network and see what other like-minded people have been doing in the North Queensland region. Julie Coutts, Visual Arts Co-ordinator, Pimlico SHS, Nov 2010.

Film and television students from Pimlico State High School have been participating in the Northern Lights Film Festival for the past 2 years.This local competition not only provides the students from the Townsville region with an opportunity to exhibit their works in a public forum, but to also be judged by professionals from the media industry.This festival is a great platform for local high school students to start their career in the film industry.Nicole Grendon, FTV and New Media Co-ordinator, Pimlico SHS, Nov 2010.

NLFF is a great experience for upcoming filmmakers as it gives them a chance to showcase their work to like-minded people – a rare opportunity in Townsville. It offered an introduction into Townsville’s small but interesting creative community, and was a fun and pleasant event. The second presentation at Warrina Cinema was a lovely touch, and I thoroughly enjoyed the German movie and food. Jessica Shepherdson, year 12, Pimlico SHS, Nov 2010

Gordonvale State High School

NLFF is a great opportunity for students to have their films criticised and see other talented student's creations. I was ecstatic when i was told my film was shortlisted for the Northern Lights Film Festival. Having your film selected really instils confidence and an eagerness to improve on your style of filming and what more you could possibly add to your films to make them more visually pleasing. There's also something special about sitting within an audience as your film lights up the screen and listening to their reactions. I only regret that i was unable to attend the 2010 NLFF, I would have loved to experience the atmosphere.Rebecca Langtree, year 11, Gordonvale SHS, Nov 2010

Kirwan State High School

Just writing to thank Richard very much for helping me out with the tech stuff at the Cow Shed on Wednesday. Everything went smoothly and the students had an excellent experience. Thanks again for sharing this resource with the community!. Anna Morrant, Performing Arts, Kirwan SHS. June 2010

Ethnic Community Care Links Inc.

I would like to extend a big thank you for allowing a series of art workshops to be held in your beautiful drawing and painting studio. This setting has contributed much to the overall quality of the finished painting, which has been donated and is now installed in the new Palliative Care Unit at eh Townsville Hospital. Lisa Macnaughton, Case Manager & Project Coordinator. Oct 2009

Lornacy Interiors

A few months ago I required the services of a photographer to capture some recently completed Interior Design projects of ours. I needed the photographer reasonably quickly & couldn’t get hold of anyone, so was in a bit of a pickle. The thought occurred to me to utilise a Photography student from JCU who had their own equipment & would work to benefit them also. I contacted Lucy Prior (Administration and HoS Personal Assistant) who was out of town at a conference, but never the less she arranged Elly Murrell (Community Engagement Coordinator) to send through a student request form. It was issued immediately & completed with my requirements. With in the day I received numerous responses from students & a suitable candidate was selected. I was exceptionally impressed with the efficiency & service provided by Lucy & Elly. I would have no hesitations to contact them in the future or in recommending their services to other business professionals. Kirby Blake, Interior Designer. Oct 2009

North Queensland Tourism Awards

As the event producer of the Townsville Airport North QLD Tourism Awards, I would like to pass on my thanks and compliments to the staff and students of JCU. The facilities provided for this event were first rate, in particularly Creative Arts, which is a truly world class learning environment. The combined efforts of various faculty and department heads provided a functional and effective event process, whilst a number of students both learned and contributed from this experience. A special mention needs to be made of the work of SoCA student Josh Dykgraaf. Josh provided a considerable amount of his time and creativity in utilising the supplied photography from numerous Biology students to create a visual artwork specific to the event.Justin Cowell, Arty Productions.

Drawing Intensive Workshop

Thank you very much for SoCA's support for the Geoff Dupree drawing intensive workshop, everyone really appreciated it. It was a great success and wonderful to see the gains made by the artists, particularly those relatively new to painting, but everyone really. We had three artists from Melbourne, two from NSW, one from the North Coast and the rest local, almost half of whom attended the drawing intensive last year. Margaret Genever, Organiser

Cancer Council, Queensland

Thank you to all associated with the Charity Concert held at JCU on June 12th 2009. Money raised from the evening will go towards the world class treatment facilities for cancer patients, research, support and assistance for patients and their families and funding for our educational programs for the prevention and early detection of cancer. Thank you for your support and thoughtfulness in helping us with our cause. Cancer Council Queensland is a charity organisation that receives no government funding and relies solely on Queenslanders and organisations such as Creative Arts, JCU to support our vital anti cancer programs. Heather Martin, Townsville Fundraising Coordinator, June 2009

Barrier Reef Institute of TAFE

Creative Arts at James Cook University generously provides access to their lithography studio for students studying printmaking at Barrier Reef Institute of TAFE, Pimlico.This opportunity allows students to extend their experience of printmaking by gaining skills in lithography processes. We are most grateful. Donna Foley, Lecturer in Printmaking, June 2009

Ingham State High School

We wish to express our sincere appreciation for the tour for the Grade 10’s. The students were really impressed and I am sure it opened their eyes to possible career choices through the Arts. It is gratifying that three students actually came forward of their own accord, excited about the presentation, and stated their intention to pursue JCU as a career path even though it had not occurred to them before. I’m sure many more felt the same though not as vocal. Ange Venardos, Arts Coordinator June 2009

Ignatius Park College

Just a quick note to say thanks to you and your department for organising the workshops and tour yesterday.The boys returned to school with renewed energy and a keenness to begin sound recording.Hopefully we can organise a similar opportunity for the other creative arts strands and our year 11 music students.Looking forward to developing stronger links with JCU and SoCA. Matthew Thiele Head of Creative Arts Ignatius Park CollegeApril 2009

Calvary Christian College

My senior music class attended a 3 hour workshop which left them screaming for more!The presentation and the hands on approach were tailored to meet the students’ needs and they all came away with a sense of excitement about compositional and performance tasks. I particularly appreciated the effort of the presenter Dr David Salisbury to extend and develop the students’ knowledge and skills in their current unit of study being World Music. To be able to utilize the Digital Sound Lab as well as exploring the state of the art facilities was an honor and a privilege and an inspiration to the students to be able to look beyond their experiences at school.This is an excellent way of extending senior secondary study by using both the technological facilities as well as the expertise of the presenters. This is also a great way to demystify tertiary pathways in music studies making it a more tangible and tempting option on completion of secondary schooling.Thank you again to SoCA at JCU for giving schools the opportunity of having this wonderful learning experience.Karen Weston, Music Coordinator, Calvary Christian College, Townsville. Feb 2009

Peter Churchill

I am extremely grateful for being allowed the use of the superb music room at JCU during the summer vacation. It's been invaluable to keep my hand in during these few weeks as I have a concert coming up. The Yamaha Grands are fine instruments to play, and the whole building is a fantastic looking 'state of the art' facility. Many thanks to Richard and all the staff for their friendliness and flexibility. We in the UK have a lot to learn from your relaxed 'can do' attitude! Peter Churchill, Pianist and Community Musician, Birmingham, UK

Bentley Park College

Thanks so much for the open day - our students were so exited about the drama class (they were all drama students) and it definitely influenced a few of them to take their senior studies in a particular direction. The day went smoothly with the workshops giving an insight into the courses. I think that continued communication between JCU and the senior schools would benefit both students and course providers as schools and students are continually accessing and utilising technologies and becoming more sophisticated and intrepid in their new media works. Please thank Russell and Michael for their time and energy. Sally Donald, Visual Arts Teacher. Bentley Park College. Cairns. Nov 2008

Life Drawing and Painting Group

On behalf of the people who regularly attend the life drawing/painting workshops we would like to thank SoCA for their community involvement in making available studio space at SoCA while this was available during 2008. Furthermore we are grateful for their continued support off campus now that studio space is no longer available due to the relocation of SoCA.Ric Smit, Co-ordinator, Life Drawing and Painting Group. Townsville. 2008-2009

Wassa – Rhythms of West Africa

On behalf of my percussion group, Wassa Rhythms of West Africa, I extend my gratitude to Creative Arts at JCU for providing us free access to the Cowshed Theatre for our weekly rehearsals. The facility is a perfect venue for our rehearsal thus facilitating our group’s aim of exploring and promoting the rhythms and music of West Africa. There has been an increase in the community’s interest in the art of hand drumming and your school’s assistance to our group has contributed to this community interest. Once again thank you very much. Alex Salvador, Wassa – Rhythms of West Africa, Townsville. 2007-2009

La Luna Youth Arts

On behalf of La Luna Youth Arts I would like to thank SoCA and in particular, Katja Fleischmann and students enrolled in MN2301 for the fantastic support we received in the re-design of our webpage. Thirteen groups of second year New Media Arts students presented their proposed websites and while we regret that we can only choose one, we are extremely excited to launch the new face of La Luna Youth Arts on the internet. Students who approached our organization for photo opportunities or further information throughout the semester did so politely, representing JCU in a professional manner, and should be congratulated for their hard-working effort. Nam Enever, Marketing Officer, La Luna Youth Arts. Nov 2008

Ayr State High School

I’m so glad that I took my year 11 students to SoCA to participate in a workshop, specifically designed for my class, using ActionScript 3.Finding workshops for myself, let alone students to attend is not easy in rural areas but the staff were great.The lecturer was able to deliver exactly what the students needed, we were given a guided tour of the complex and Head of Creative Arts dropped in to answer questions about courses on offer.The students were impressed with not only the computing facilities, but with the sound booths, photography and other media equipment available to the university students 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.It has motivated my students to consider the careers available through study in the creative arts area at JCU to say nothing about the enthusiasm with which they are now tackling their assignment.Vicki Toohey Head of Department, Technology Oct 2008

The Coral Sea Calligraphers

The Coral Sea Calligraphers have been established as a group for 22 years. We endeavour to practise, learn and teach the art of Calligraphy and the various art techniques associated with it. We hold a mini workshop on the first Saturday of each month and a major 2 day weekend workshop at least once a year inviting an interstate or overseas professional tutor.As a non profit organisation it has always been difficult to find appropriate work space to hold such events. During this past year we have been fortunate enough to use the SoCA facilities and find that as the rooms were designed as an art studio it suits our purposes perfectly. Our visiting tutors have commented on the working space and natural light suitable for the type of work we do. We are grateful to Creative Arts at JCU in helping a small art group such as ours to continue in developing our skills. Isabelle Boyle, Secretary, Coral Sea Calligraphers. 2008

Music Teachers’ Association

The Townsville and District Branch of the Music Teachers' Assocation of Queensland were very fortunate to be able to use the new SoCA rehearsal room for our recent sight reading tournament.We found the facilities were well suited for our event and the locality and ease of parking were convenient for students and parents. Thank you to Elly and other SoCA staff who assisted in the organisation of our requirements.We look forward to using the Rehearsal room again for future MTAQ events.Pam Abraham, President, Music Teachers’ Association Qld Oct / Nov 2008

Rotary Club

Everyone who attended the vocational visit to Creative Arts at JCU last night enjoyed themselves and was as impressed as I was with the high quality of the facility and its equipment. It is a world class facility with state of the art equipment, gallery and performance spaces. It was obvious to all that JCU is not only committed to fostering science subjects taught by the University but also committed to improving the University’s reputation for the arts as well.I would like to express my thanks on behalf of the club to Ryan Daniel, the Head of Creative Arts for giving his time to give us an informative and interesting tour of the facility of which he is obviously and justly proud, and to Elly Murrell, the Community Events and Engagement Officer for organising this very worth while visit. Malcolm Beresford, Rotary Club, Townsville. Oct 2008

International Student Centre

On behalf of the ISC, thank you for providing us access to your facilities to hold the Welcome BBQ for new international students. The event was a huge success and your support in providing the venue truly contributed to the overall success of this event. There was positive feedback from the students about the infrastructure and we have received inquiries about courses that JCU offers. Maureen Bourke, Manager, International Student Support, JCU. July 2008

The Australian Institute of Professional Photography

“Thanks to Elly, Clive, Kirsten and all the staff Creative Arts at JCU for extending us the use of your new facilities for our recent professional photography seminar evening.The Studio and Theatre areas are world class and added greatly to the success of our presentation.Thank you also for the assistance and advice in getting our catering organised and the use of your kitchen facilities.We look forward to hosting future professional photography events in collaboration with Creative Arts.” John de RooyNational Treasurer AIPP Ltd Sept 2008

Kirwan State High School

Thank you for giving our students the opportunity to perform in the Cow Shed last night and rehearse all day yesterday. The performance was a real success and the students really enjoyed performing in the venue. I think it was an excellent opportunity for students to experience theatre in a 'real world' situation. Thanks, Anna Henderson~ Drama Teacher

Just a quick message to express our sincere thanks for the excellent school workshops which you organised at Creative Arts at JCU on Tuesday 29th July 2008.The feedback I have received from the teachers and students who attended the workshops has been overwhelmingly positive.I thought you would like to know that there is a definite buzz amongst our senior students about opportunities in the Creative Arts at JCU!Students were highly impressed by the great new facilities, and the approachability and expertise of the staff who led the sessions.Please extend our thanks to all academic and support staff who were involved in facilitating the workshops with our students and teachers on the day.” Paul Allan ~ Head of Arts Department

Shalom Christian College

The Photoshop workshop conducted by the lecturers at JCU gave the Shalom year 11 and 12 Art and ICT students the opportunity to use software that they had not previously used. The students manipulated and distorted photos to place themselves with their favorite celebrities. The students really enjoyed the excursion and have commented on how much fun the activities were. The enthusiasm of the students was fantastic to watch as was their effort in completing the given tasks.This has now prompted the Art and ICT departments to install Photoshop onto the school computers so that they can continue their skills in digital imagery. The gift bags students received at the excursion were an added bonus which was really appreciated as each student wanted to keep their work but didn’t have access to their own USBs.Tegan Nuttle ~ Art Teacher

Northern Beaches High

The workshop was engaging and fun for all students.Students learnt some of the basic tools in Adobe Photoshop through a fun and practical activity.Students are now also more aware of the courses offered by the Creative Arts at JCU, as well as the careers they could have in the arts. The USB flash wrist bands that were given to the students were a great hit.Thank you.We are looking forward to the next workshop.Paula Adams-Thompson ~ Art Teacher