Graduates reflect on learning pathway

A journey begins with a single step, while the adage may be old; the truth of the statement has never been greater.

Three former Central students recently received their Bachelor of Arts in Creative Advertising and Graphic Design from Curtin University.

Back in 2011, Reeanne Anderson, Hannah Fredriksson and Linda Tran began their Cert III in Graphic Design Production and perhaps unbeknown to them, a five-year study journey.

Reeanne first discovered her passion for Graphic Design in Year 10 after making a poster with Photoshop.

“I had no idea how any of it worked but I persevered to teach myself as much as I could. I continued to use what I knew for my remaining high school years and because I enjoyed it so much, I decided to study Graphic Design at Central”, she said.

For Hannah, Graphic Design was something she had been working toward, without knowing it, for a long time.

“When I was a kid my dad bought a PC magazine that came with a disc of demo computer programs, including one called Paint Shop Pro. I spent a lot of time investigating it, drawing in it and learning about layers and filters”.

It was only when Hannah began volunteer work at a not-for-profit agency did she realise how much she enjoyed it.

“The senior Graphic Designer taught me about the basics of the Adobe suite (particularly InDesign) and gave me some simple tasks to do. I enjoyed this work a lot, and I knew it would be worthwhile investing my time in refining these skills, and potentially making a career out of them one day”.

After coming to Central and completing their Cert III, the trio was inspired to continue and completed their Cert IV, Diploma and Advanced Diploma, before going to Curtin to complete their undergraduate degrees.

The three students credit their Central lecturers with not only inspiring them, but also providing a great space to come and learn.

“If it weren’t for our lecturers in Cert III, Christof, Fitz, Darren, Lawrence, John, Deb, Chris P, and Bernie, we wouldn’t have made it to where we are today. Their passion and commitment to such young students proves to be a thriving environment to future graphic designers, ones they, and industry can be proud of!” Reeanne said.

The structure of the courses at Central gave the trio, especially Hannah, the freedom to see if Graphic Design was what they wanted to do, without having to commit to a course that would take years to complete.

“Unlike uni, you receive a Certificate or Diploma at the end of each year of study, meaning you still get a valid qualification if you decide it’s not for you after a year or two. Or you might end up like me, having the time of your life at Central and never wanting the journey to end”, Hannah said.

The most valuable asset Reeanne feels the three of them gained from their time at Central was the high level of skills, which subsequently set them apart from many university classmates.

“Studying at Central was the perfect building block to continue my studies at Curtin. Knowing how to use the Adobe Suite took a lot of pressure off. I could focus on the design and feel confident enough in my skills to execute it. I feel as though that prior knowledge helped me save a lot of time!”

Congratulations to Reeanne, Hannah and Linda on completing your study journey and good luck with the next step of your career.

The graduating trio: Linda Tran (left), Reeanne Anderson (middle) and Hannah Fredriksson (right)

(The graduating trio: Linda Tran (left), Reeanne Anderson (middle) and Hannah Fredriksson (right))

Graphic Design Gold

WorldSkills is like the Olympics for skills training and Central Graphic Design Production student Chris Williamson is one step closer to representing Australia following his win at the regional competition.

Earlier this year, Central hosted the 2015 WorldSkills WA Regional Graphic Design Technology competition for Cert III for Printing and Graphic Arts (Graphic Design Production) students.

The results are in and Central has come away with outstanding results proving our students are at the forefront of Graphic Design in WA.

Central students came first, second, third and fourth for at the regional competition.

The results are:

1st Place: Chris Williamson

2nd Place: Cody James Ballantyne

3rd Place: Claudia Donovan – Hicks

4th Place: Thitikorn Phuengkam

Chris Williamson will be presented his gold medal The Grand Ballroom at Crown Perth on the 1 December along with the other successful competitors.

Following his win, Chris will have the opportunity to represent WA and Central when he competes at the national WorldSkills competition next year for a chance to represent Australia internationally.

The high calibre of all Central Graphic Design Production students will be on display at the graduate show located at Building 4, 133 Newcastle Street, Northbridge on 30 November from 6-8pm.

Not only will the work of our graduates be on display, but also pizza from Stuzzico and a letterpress so you can print your own Christmas cards.

If you’re interested in attending the graduate exhibition, please RSVP to the GDP Exhibition Facebook page by the 25 November.

More Information:

Kyle’s taking design skills to Dallas

Certificate III in Printing and Graphic Arts (Graphic Design Production) student Kyle Falzon blew away judges at the national level of the Adobe Certified Associate (ACA) World Championship, and is now off to Dallas, Texas to represent Australia and compete in the global competition. Kyle (pictured above right) was presented his award by the national competition organiser, XCERIO’s CEO, JB Tinker (above left).

“The Adobe competition was a great opportunity for a young designer like myself. It was a new experience working under such a strict deadline. I was initially shocked by the amount of work we had to do, but as the day progressed I found the competition easier,” Kyle said.

The calibre and number of Central printing and graphic arts students who entered the national competition made judges sit up and take notice. In fact the judges made a decision to relocate the competition to Perth this year, with Central acting as the host venue. This year’s judges were impressed by the high exam scores, application of Adobe products to industry standards, quality execution and the creative solutions shown.

Judging table at Adobe Certified Associate (ACA) World Championship,
Judging table at Adobe Certified Associate (ACA) World Championship.

Ten Central students were selected to compete in the National Championship, which consisted of a real-world design brief challenge, set by 2015 Charity Partner, The Big Issue. The brief consisted of two poster designs and a vendor postcard design. You can see the final designs on XCERIO’s website.

First, second and third prize winners were all Central students, with Claudia Donovan-Hicks winning second prize and Irra Mamangun winning third place. Claudia and Irra won cash prizes and all the finalists won a new WACOM tablet.

“I am very excited to attend the World Championships in August. It is going to be an amazing experience representing Australia and it will look fantastic on my resume regardless!” Kyle said.

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Albert’s creativity goes rusty

Design student Albert Furfaro proudest achievement is happening now as he strives to improve his design skills in a dream role at Rusty Surfboards.

This role is the latest milestone for this multi-talented graphic design student who was recently honoured as Central Institute of Technology’s Vocational Student of the Year (Diploma level).

Knowing from an early age that design was the vocation for him, Albert stood out not just for his dedication to his craft, but his desire to help his fellow peers improve their skills as well.

“I will always help out, no matter if you’re my competition or my best friend”, said Albert.

“I believe I can contribute my experience both in the workforce and learning environments (both good and bad) to help future years of design students to push themselves to be better”.

Illustrating this perfectly was his creation of ‘Square One’ an initiative organised through the Australian Graphic Design Association (AGDA) WA.  This provides a platform for young designers to secure initial employment and exposure in a highly competitive industry.

Showing a community focus with his work completed for not for profit organisations,  Albert has also boosted his family’s businesses through the creation of websites and online payment tools.

Facing a few challenges as he completed his Advanced Diploma of Graphic Design at Central, Albert made it across the finish line and his design was used as the branding for the final year exhibition and splashed across the Perth campus.

His broad resume also includes being selected for a national wine label design competition and gaining an internship with The Brand Agency.

Albert believes Central was the perfect vehicle for him to get where he needed to go.

“The lecturers are a great inspiration and have pushed me to greater heights than I would ever thought I could reach”, he said.

“During my studies many all-nighters were pulled and sometimes I began to think my ideas had no depth.  I found the feedback and critiques of fellow students, friends and lecturers helped me to gain confidence and submit a final body of work that I never thought possible.”

A Central part of the Equal Opportunities Commission

For more than a year Central has been a proud supporter of the Equal Opportunity Commission (EOC) and their mission to eliminate discrimination.

Central continues to build on their relationship with the EOC, with six Advanced Diploma of Graphic Design graduates using their marketing and design prowess to be shortlisted for the upcoming EOC marketing campaign.

Working closely with EOC’s Public Affairs Officer, Colleen Mack, over 50 Central student designs were submitted to create a branding, marketing and awareness campaign.

The Equal Opportunity Act was enacted in 1984 and came into operation in July 1985. Its objectives are varied, but essentially focused on eliminating discrimination on the grounds of sex, marital status, pregnancy, breast feeding, family status, race, religion, political conviction, impairment, age or gender, in the areas of employment, accommodation and education.

Central is proud to continue with its support of non-profit and charitable organisations and we look forward to seeing the students’ marketing campaign ideas hit the streets.

InDesign and in the running

Imagine one day you’re at Central sitting your exam and the next minute you’re off on a trip to Sydney, with a chance to represent Australia.

That’s exactly what has happened to 17-year-old Graphic Design Production student Sam Coverley.

Sam excelled in the ‘Print and Digital Media Publication using Adobe InDesign’ exam as part of his Certificate III in Printing and Graphic Arts (Graphic Design Production). His outstanding results gave him the opportunity to compete in the 2014 Adobe Certified Championship in Sydney. If successful, Sam will represent Australia at the Adobe Certified World Championships in Disneyland, California this July.

The Adobe Certified Associate World Championship is a global competition that identifies and honours the next generation of design professionals using Adobe software. Top students from around the world, represent their country and compete in the final round of the championship in Disneyland.

Sam with lecturer Chris Schnell
Sam with lecturer Chris Schnell

IC Central, the supplier of the Adobe certification program, has supported Sam and paid for his airfare and accommodation so he can compete in Sydney. Sam will fly out on Thursday 12 June and return on Saturday, where he will know whether he is going on a California adventure.

Central wishes Sam the best of luck in Sydney and for the future.

To be part of the next generation of design professionals, don’t goof around; Central’s Graphic Design courses will help launch your career, and could take you all the way to Pluto.


Sam won second place in the Australian round of the Adobe Certified Associate World Championships. Brilliant work Sam! See more on facebook.

Graphic Design Students Bug Minister’s office

Graphic Design students have bugged the office of the WA minister for Training, but not how you might think.

One class exercise for the Graphic Design portfolio at Central went so well, the end result now sits on the wall of the WA Minister for Training’s office!

First year students in Central’s Certificate III Printing and Graphic Art (Graphic Design Production) were tasked with constructing inventive images using alphabetic characters and glyphs.

The class, who have only completed one month’s training, created a series of ‘Typobugs’. Typobugs are colourful insects composed purely of typographical elements. The striking images were collated together to form the artwork that has been loaned out to Minister Dr Kim Hames MLA .

The aim of the exercise was to encourage the students to combine their creativity with their newly learnt skills.

“As a cooperative class exercise it encouraged creative interpretation and expression. It instilled confidence by collectively exhibiting their newly acquired skills and knowledge”, said lecturer Karel Wohlnick.

The talent of Central Graphic Design students is literally on display. If have a passion for characters and design, Central Graphic Design might just be for you.

View Central’s Graphic Design courses