St. Marys Anglican Girls School has been providing its students with opportunities to pursue personal and academic excellence in a respectful and supportive environment for over 100 years. BEVIN Creative was sought out by St. Marys’ dedicated Indigenous Support Co-ordinator, Julie Garnett.
With NAIDOC week celebrations falling between the 3 – 10 July in 2022, the Indigenous students group at St Mary’s were tasked with conceiving a t-shirt design for the NAIDOC events, through stories, hand drawn illustrations and colouring exercises. This t-shirt would be worn by the students not only at the NAIDOC Week celebrations, but also at functions throughout the year. Their designs were collated and reviewed by a community elder for accuracy. These designs were provided us, and requested to utilise the creative components and stories to bring to reality a T-shirt design which encapsulated their collective ideas and sketches.
The illustration provided by the students tells a journey in visual story format and flows around the t-shirt (continues front to back), with highlighted design elements on the sleeves. This meant that the pattern for the shirt would need to run continuously from seam-to-seam. The t-shirt also needed to feature the St Mary’s school logo and it’s placement has been made flexible to allow for various t-shirt sizing.
Using the creative elements and story snippets provided by the students, BEVIN designed and illustrated custom elements to encapsulate the intent behind the students ideas. This included watering holes, kangaroo footprints, campfires, and dancing students. These elements were strategically placed to create a single flat design, which when printed, could be cut to produce the wrap-around pattern of the shirt. This allowed for additional use of the patterned design in other ways. It also solved the issue of fitting the pattern for scalability due to the varying sizes required for t-shirt production. Additionally, we designed a unique and separate pattern for the sleeves.
The finished design was a colourful and vibrant illustrated pattern that was visually striking, culturally appropriate and versatile. We were cognisant of the vibrancy of colour (required enhancing) due to colour fading on the shirts over time. BEVIN suggested having the pattern made into a flag, which could be flown at the school throughout NAIDOC week celebrations. The final artwork was produced into distinct panels to be printed.
Due to the BEVIN team’s experience, we offered to manage the print production of the dye sublimated garments and flag on behalf of St. Marys’. The T-shirts were printed in six specified sizes, as was the flag printed in the same fashion and sewn with all required fixings.