St Brendan's College student Jack Callow and Brother Steve Grundy with the portrait Jack painted of Steve.
St Brendan's College student Jack Callow and Brother Steve Grundy with the portrait Jack painted of Steve. Guy Williams

Footy player shows fine art skills in new exhibition

JACK Callow is all that St Brendan's College wants its students to be.

The boy from Biloela is a talented rugby league player who helped steer the school to the 2016 Rockhampton Secondary Schools First XIII premiership earlier in the year.

He has his sights set on continuing his rugby league career while pursuing an exercise and a sports science degree at university with the hope of one day becoming a Health and Physical Education teacher.

But the 17-year-old is a whole lot more than your typical footy player.

And St Brendan's is a whole lot more than just a rugby league school.

Jack is a talented artist whose portrait of Brother Steve Grundy will be among the collection at the college's art exhibition tomorrow.

Held in conjunction with the SBC Expo and Orientation Day, the art exhibition will showcase Jack's work alongside pieces produced by the school's talented artists, providing the public with an opportunity to view and purchase the artwork on show. Brother Grundy is a mentor to many of the college's students and Jack said he'd garnered an appreciation for the former principal.

Jack wanted to pay tribute to Grundy, who tutors students, builds sets for the school musical, helps drive the college's buses and helps out in classrooms.

"He's a former principal here and he's one of those people that are always there to help out with the boys,” Jack said.

Brother Grundy said he wasn't surprised with Jack's artwork and believed it was a reflection of SBC students.

"The most important thing is for people to realise that we are more than just a rugby league school,” Brother Grundy said.

"We have talented musicians and artists here and people think we're only a rugby league school.

"The fact that Jack is a kid who plays rugby league, wants to be a PE teacher when he's finished but is also a talented artist, and has the opportunity to improve on his artistic skills is a credit to the school.”

Jack started at St Brendan's College in 2015 and has worked tirelessly on his artwork behind the scenes. "The interesting thing about Jack as an artist is he's committed,” art head of department Lee Ann Handley said.

"The other students, they would just finish, but Jack would come back after school, he would stay at lunchtime, he would take it home and keep coming back and going through that process to get to that higher sense of resolution. It's that satisfaction that comes with it too.”

Lee Ann witnessed firsthand the time Jack invested in his artwork however his masterpiece came as a surprise to his teammates.

"It's a thing I like to do in my own time, I guess,” Jack said. "Not many of my mates like art or do art but it's a hobby of mine and I enjoy it.

"The boys seem to like it. They still pay me out about doing art, but they were impressed.

"A few of them were surprised that I had the skill to pull off artwork like that.”

The open day will provide interested students and their families an opportunity to tour the college, conduct science experiments, test their physical skills with the college's HPE department and experience all the college has to offer.

Lee Ann said the exhibition provided students with an opportunity to gain valuable experience.

"We have work from Year 7 to Year 12 and it's a chance for all the kids to get their work into a public arena and learn what it's like to exhibit their work and put it out into a public space,” Lee Ann said.

The SBC Open Day starts at 9am. Students' work can be purchased on St Brendan's College Facebook page.

Guy Williams



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