Category Archives: 2015 Adults’ Program

Veiled Secrets – Book Launch – Archie Fusillo and Josie Montano

Saturday 12th September, 2015

Archie Fusillo and Josie Montano launched their YA novel, Veiled Secrets, at the Story Arts Festival Ipswich last Saturday.

SAFI Josie

Josie Montano

Archie and Josie’s collaboration on this novel started at the Story Arts Festival Ipswich several years ago. They talked about how the similarities in their lives, including growing up as children of Italian migrants, shaped their literary relationship culminating in Veiled Secrets.

SAFI Archie

Archie Fusillo

Two teens from different sides of the country collide on the other side of the world in a little Italian village. Cynical and mistrusting of their heritage, Nick and Lia are thrust into a foreign world of their ancestors by a chance decision. Unknown to each other they set out on a long journey back to the ‘old country’ to appease their respective grandparents, only to find themselves involved in a mystery that could tear their individual families apart. Somewhere in the not too recent past, a misguided moment of youthful naivety threatened to crumble the hopes and aspirations of more than just the people involved. Now, with hindsight, and in an effort to know the truth before it’s too late, Nick and Lia have to put aside their differences and put right the many past wrongs as they uncover a family secret that bonds them for life. In the process do they reveal their own hidden secrets?

SAFI Veiled Secrets

Archie and Josie’s alter-egos, including Nonna, made an appearance at the festival at the Story Arts dinner that night.

SAFI Josie and Archie

Josie and Archie at the Story Arts Festival.

Yvonne Mes, Author of Meet Sidney Nolan and Oliver’s Grumbles

The School Magazine – Alan Edwards – Adult Program

Saturday 12th September

One Hundred Years of the School Magazine

SAFI Alan School Mag

Senior Editor Alan Edwards

The School Magazine is the oldest running children’s magazine in the world. With four different magazines coming out ten times a year, The School Magazine has a print run of around 150 000 magazines a month!

This fabulous magazine is loved by children and teachers alike.
Senior editor Alan Edwards took everyone on a trip down memory lane, from the start of the magazine during WWI, though the Great Depression, from two colours in 1986 to four colours in 1999 and the launch of the website in 2012.

We looked at some of the editors, authors and illustrators who have contributed over the years combining well-known names with emerging authors and illustrators.

School Mag contributors Sheryl Gwyther

Oliver Phommavanh, Sheryl Gwyther, Sophie Masson, Alan Edwards, Janeen Brian & Yvonne Mes These authors listening to this session all had stories published in the magazine.

The School Magazine aligns with the Australian Curriculum and is relevant across the states and publishes a wide variety of stories, genres, and topics as long as it has literary merit.

The School Magazine will stay print based and is not looking at becoming digital. A anthology with the best stories over the last 100 years will be released for the Centenary next year.SAFI Mag Yvonne Mes, Author of Meet Sidney Nolan and Oliver’s Grumbles

Matt Ottley – Illustration Workshop – Adult Program


Matt mixing colours

Friday 11th of September, 2015

Author, artist and musician, Matt Ottley spent over an hour sharing the finer art of picture book illustration or as he likes to call it ‘artworks in books’.

We looked at the importance of flow throughout the storyboard,  flow of perspectives and light and dark throughout the storyboard as well at the weight and importance of placement.


Matt with his picture book ‘Tree’

Matt has had 28 books published in a range of media. He talked about Teacup which he created as large paintings with traditional media whereas Suri’s Wall has been created digitally.

We briefly looked at creating characters, starting with scribbles drawn while imaging a variety of feelings and moving to a drawing a face from the principles of dynamic anatomy.

SAFI Matt3

Matt demonstrated how he mixes skin colour. Matt has a good grasp on colour mixing technically as to everyone’s surprise we learned Matt is colour blind.

Matt Ottley is a multi-award-winning picture book writer and illustrator. He spent his childhood in Papua New Guinea, and has traveled widely throughout Australia and the world. He worked for some years as a stockman on remote cattle stations in the Australian outback, then went on to study fine arts and music at college and university. He lived for three years in Britain where he worked as an equestrian painter. His controversial book and musical work for young adults, Requiem for a Beast was awarded the Children’s Book Council of Australia’s Picture Book of the Year in 2008, and the Queensland Premier’s Award for Young Adult Literature in the same year. Matt’s work has been translated into many languages and his picture book What Faust Saw was an international bestseller. Matt continues to work as an author, illustrator and composer.

SAFI Matt2

Yvonne Mes, Author of Meet Sidney Nolan and Oliver’s Grumbles

Social Media & StoryArts – please get involved!

Blogging, and Social Media, at StoryArts Festival 101

Social Media Accounts:

StoryArts Festival is moving with the times, and we now have an active presence on Social Media.  And we would love for you to join in.  The more the merrier as they say.


Twitter – @StoryArtsFest

Instagram – @StoryArtsFestivalIpswich


***to the StoryArts Blogging Team, please read all the way to the bottom of this post.  And if you are not on the team, feel free to read the instructions and submit as per instructions***


Please use the following StoryArts hashtags and tags.  Please also feel free to also hashtag and tag your favourite author, illustrator, presenter, or book.

You can also tag us on Social Media, as well as your favourite author, illustrator, or presenter.  Just search for them on the Social Media Platforms that you use.

















No photos are to be taken of children, unless it is of their heads, from behind a large group, with no identifiable children in the picture.  Pictures of authors and/or illustrators with their books are the ultimate pictures.  However, pictures of presenters working their magic are also great.



Feel free to do a ‘write up’ of any session you attend or present.  Technical edits will be done on your submissions.


Send to:

Please send all blog submissions to:

And if you can, please let Sam S know about it.



There is no guarantee that your submission will be published as there are editorial guidelines that must be adhered to.  However, we welcome submissions aplenty.

Bookings are now open for StoryArts Festival Ipswich 2015!

SAFI logo

Bookings are now open for StoryArts Festival Ipswich 2015!

To book, click HERE.

For all the information that you’ll need, check out the documents below:

Schools Programs

Information for Schools

programs – city selections

programs – Woodlands and Esk selections

High school program IGGS

High school program at WestMAC – Monday 14 September

Family Program

SAFI_Family_program 2015

Adults’ Program

SAFI_Adult program 2015

REMEMBER, to book, click HERE!

And many thanks to all our Sponsors and Partners:

StoryArts Festival Ipswich 2015 – partial program release, & bookings opening soon!


We are pleased to announce the release of some of the Program details for this year’s StoryArts Festival Ipswich!

Bookings will open soon for the 2015 Festival, being held from 6-16 September 2015.

There will be a number of programs this year: Schools, Families, and Adults.

You can check out the Families’ Program HERE!

And for all teachers, teacher-librarians, aspiring and emerging authors and illustrators, and even parents, check out the Adults’ Program HERE!

The Children’s Program is so absolutely jam-packed with awesomeness, that you will have wait just a little bit longer before you see all the marvellous things that we have in store for the children at the 2015 StoryArts Festival Ipswich.

Watch this space!  And make sure you subscribe to our blog to receive all the news hot off the press!  (You can subscribe in the top left corner, just below the Festival banner).

Yours in Children’s Literature,

The StoryArts Festival Team