Dec 20

16 years old and taking the art world by storm – Teddy McRitchie has an extraordinary talent that came to life at the Australian Wearable Arts Festival 2019 (AWAF) and will be resurrected in 2020.

The young artist made his first wearable art design in 2015 when he was just 11 years old for his local wearable art show on Norfolk Island where he won three awards and fell in love with the process.

Four years later – after moving to the Sunshine Coast – Teddy started creating wearable art for wearable art shows and competitions across the Sunshine Coast and Brisbane where he soon found out about the Australian Wearable Art Festival.

“This is something I love doing so I want to put everything into it, I even fundraised money to travel to a wearable art show in Perth where I won the Youth Award.

“I recently became a recipient of a scholarship through Noosa Chances so that will go a long way in helping me follow my dream.”

Teddy made quite an impression at the AWA Festival 2019 where he won Best Secondary Student Award with his two entries in the Avant Garde and Trashion categories.

“For the Trashion category entry I wanted to work with bike tubes which I was able to source through a local bike shop – the artwork was called “Funeral” and had a real dark/grieving feel to the design,” Teddy said.

“My second piece for Avant Garde was called “Empower” and I really wanted to create something that went against society – too often society tells you to feel the same and look the same.”

“I used material we wear most of the time – it’s not double denim or triple denim, more like 100s of denim – to show people that you can stand tall, be bold and be empowered.

“Sometimes I get ideas that just keep changing and developing as I create it and it takes on a world of its own.”

Teddy will be studying arts subjects at Sunshine Beach State High School for Grade 11 in 2020 and is hoping to one day secure a career in costume design but in the meantime he’s making every move to be a part of the industry, volunteering at local theatre company’s doing costume design and starting his design page (TMC Costumes) where he has already completed two commissioned pieces.

“I have worked on a piece for a theatre company as well as a gala dress and they were quite happy with the results.”

It might be the time of year when people are taking a break, but the young creative is busy working on his new pieces for the AWA Festival 2020.

“I’m excited to showcase my ideas and I think they might be my best ones yet – the Trashion category piece is made of a material that is extremely hard to get your hands on so I think everyone will be amazed when they see it in such an abundance.

“The Avant Garde design is highly sculptural and pays tribute to something but you will have to attend the event to find out what!

“It has been an amazing opportunity to be a part of this event and it’s not just about the artwork but the people you meet who are incredibly inspiring.”

Teddy also had the amazing opportunity in 2019 to do a week work experience with Brisbane artist Claudia Williams of Llani Creative to help work on the Australia National Costume for Miss Universe 2019.

The Australian Wearable Arts Festival 2020 is being held on a larger stage at Venue 114 in Birtinya to accommodate the growing numbers of entries and spectators.

Tickets for the afternoon seating start at $85 and the gala event tickets start at $150. To find out more visit http://australianwearableart.com.au/.

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