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Guests immerse themselves in art and music at McGregor Summer School

two women doing art
Participants Lorna Robertson and Karen Clamp.

The University of Southern Queensland’s McGregor Summer Arts and Music Workshops were off to a flying start this week, with participants fine-tuning their creative skills with the help of practising artists and musicians.

This year’s participants have chosen from a variety of workshops, including watercolour, acrylic and oil painting, glass beads, furniture restoration and jewellery. The music workshops include bass, guitar and drums.

Joining the school for a third time is artist Georgina Rathmell, who liked to blend the rules when it came to her program selection.

“Each time I visit I like to switch between watercolour and oil painting – so this year I am doing the watercolour course led by Sue Lederhouse,” Ms Rathmell said.

“It’s been fantastic so far, when Sue walks around she can pick up on exactly what you need to change to improve your piece, such as how you’re holding your brush or mixing your colours.

“And the fact that you get to paint all day helps to solidify the new techniques you learn.”

Leading one of the art courses is internationally renowned artist David Hinchliffe.

He said the summer school provides the perfect opportunity for people looking to explore their thirst for creative expression.

“Our 12 participants are having wonderful fun diving into a week of painting immersion,” Mr Hinchliffe said.

“They are developing skills in painting with acrylics and most importantly seeing the world through artists’ eyes.

“It’s always important to grow by stretching our abilities and experience, but never more so than at a challenging time like this when the world is facing a pandemic.

“Many people have had an opportunity during the last two years to focus on the really important things in life and that includes discovering the creativity within us all.”

Event Coordinator Deborah Meyer said the event had once again proved popular.

"It’s wonderful to be able to provide a wide variety of creative learning opportunities to enrich and assist our participants on their artistic journeys,” Ms Meyer said.

“Whether they’re looking to build on your skills or find a new career path, we’re pleased to be able to support our local artists and musicians by connecting them with experts and fellow enthusiasts.

“The school wraps up on Saturday and we’re already planning the Winter Workshop program.”

The McGregor Summer Arts School is now in its 54th year and is the longest running visual, creative arts and music workshops in the country. Learn more.