• Students Daryl, Bowen and Latoya use their country, culture and stories as inspiration for their unique designs. (NITV News)Source: NITV News
Stories stretching back thousands of years are now being transformed into modern day designs by students in the Northern Territory.
Laura Morelli

31 Aug 2017 - 2:26 PM  UPDATED 31 Aug 2017 - 3:25 PM

Senior Students at Ntaria School in Hermannsburg are learning to tell stories in new ways with new technology.

Daryl Malbunka, Bowen Abott and Latoya Fly are all young creators who have been learning graphic design as part of an innovation workshop. The program, run by Swinburne University’s Nicola St John, introduces students to digital design tools, working on iPads and learning new ways of drawing.

“Their natural talent, visual knowledge and creativity is amazing. They have intuitively taken to working on a new digital medium,” Ms St John said.

“What is emerging is really a new graphic aesthetic, allowing young people to tell stories in their own way. It’s allowing Indigenous creative practice to transcend into new mediums and utilize new technologies.”

The students have been discovering what Indigenous design means within Ntaria, how the tools of design can take on a new meaning, and the potential of design to create future employment and enterprise opportunities within the community.

Daryl, Bowen and Latoya each have strong connections to their Indigenous heritage and use the stories from their country, culture and ancestors. Now the students want to share more about who they are and the inspirations behind their innovative, creative and spectacular designs.

Indigenous youth tell traditional stories in a contemporary way
These students from Ntaria School in Hermannsburg have created their own enterprise using the world’s oldest culture with the newest technology.

Daryl Malbunka

"My name is Daryl Malbunka and I’m 14. My family is from Kapriliya, which is West of Hermannsburg. My favourite place is Palm Valley because we go fishing, camping and for picnics.

My favourite thing to do on the ipad is to make some shapes. I like to make t-shirts and draw some animals.

It’s important for people to see our culture and to see the old stuff. I like to go out bush for honey and some fishing and hunting, ride some horses and to break down horses."

Daryl's design Story:

"This is a design of people sitting down digging for honey ants. The ants are going to their houses and finding which place they are going to camp. Honey ants are important because they are good bush tucker. They are good to eat!"

Bowen Abott 

"I like design. It’s easy to draw on the ipad. Design to me is about using simple shapes and keeping things simple."

Bowen's design story:

"This is a design of Uluru that I used to have dreams about. It’s a good place. The red is for the sand, and the sky is full of stars. It is a special place. AFL is also an important sport for me - I like to play. I drew this because I was thinking of my dream."

Latoya Fly 

"My name is Latoya Fly and I am 14 years old. My family is from Darwin and Ntaria. My grandmother is an artist, a painter. I learn stories from my Grandmother and Grandfather and my Dad.

My ideas come from the bush. From going out hunting and my Grandparents talking about stories. I draw the stories first on paper and then I make them on the iPad. With design, you use different shapes and there are different names for things.

My favourite things to do are sharing stories, going hunting, looking for bush tuckers. When I am older, I want to become like my Grandmother, an artist. I need to learn from her and ask her a lot of questions. I want my life to be special."

Latoya's design Story:

"My design is of people sitting and enjoying local bushfoods like Bush Banana, Honey Ants, and Witchetty Grubs. Honey Ants you will find underground. Bush Onions you will see on the side of the road and Witchetty Grubs you will find in the roots. These bushfoods are my favourite. They come in all different colours, shapes and they are different from all other foods."

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