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Visits open world of art and writing for students

Visits open world of art and writing for students

Since the launch of Michelle O’Connell’s children’s book, Tinui – The Last Post, author and illustrator Michelle has been visiting Wairarapa schools and working with students up to 13 years of age.

Each year, Michelle has read her latest book (she has published three in the series), shared the history behind the story and has had a particular focus for her visits.

This year she taught art workshops in 13 classrooms from seven schools, including Tinui School, and their artwork will be displayed at the Masterton Library during July and August.

Michelle’s final event will be a sharing evening at Hedleys Bookshop, 4 August where students from Hadlow School will read an extract from the short story they wrote during Michelle’s writing workshop.
Michelle worked with the following primary schools:

Dalefield School, Douglas Park School, Fernridge School, Hadlow School, St Mary’s School, Lakeview School and Tinui School.

Michelle’s books are published by the boutique publisher, BMS Books Ltd an imprint of Business Media Services.

BMS Books publisher and director Michael Smith says Michelle’s commitment to visiting schools and working with students displays the passion she has for her art and writing.

“Michelle has made tremendous strides in developing her illustrating and writing in the three books we have published since 2015.”

Michelle is a self-taught painter and local Masterton artist, where she paints in oils on large canvasses. As an illustrator she works in graphite, water colour paints and water colour pencils on paper.

“The development and success of Michelle’s work are due not only to her understanding of the art involved in picture book production but also the depth of feeling she is able to bring the stories for children.

“By visiting schools, Michelle is able to open up a world in which children are able to connect to their stories through writing and painting,” Smith says.

‘Tinui – The Last Post’ is the last of the group of three books drawing on stories around World War One commemorations in the South Wairarapa area. A fourth book is planned for next year.

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