Thursday 16th May 2024

Over the last couple of weeks we've been thrilled to have visits from our arts alumni Nick Guilford and Qwenton McKenzie.

One of the great things I've seen in my short time at John McGlashan is the way the college looks after its alumni. It was heartwarming to see Nick and Qwenton have kept connections with their teachers and were genuinely keen to pop in and have a chat about what they've been up to since leaving school.

Image by: Peter Claman


I met Nick with Glen Clark (Art, Agribusiness, IB) - the pair have maintained a connection through a shared love for drawing, painting and all things visual art! Glen initially linked me Nick's art through Instagram and while I'm no connoisseur, it's plain to see this young artist has already found a unique voice and has some serious technical skill to back it up!

Not only that - Nick clearly has both a realistic and refreshingly positive attitude to making it full time as an artist. He knows that now its the right time to give it his all and he's confident striking out on his own - and he's cottoned on to all of the relationship building and planning work that needs happen behind the scenes to make it work.

We were delighted to hear that Nick will be running his own solo exhibition, 'Ecdysis' at the Dunedin Community Gallery this weekend 17th-20th May. Hope to see you there!

Image by: Peter Claman

Image by: Peter Claman


After leaving John McGlashan last year, Qwenton is attending the mighty Otago University studying Consumer Food Science and Marketing. In the future, he's looking to use his new skills to help his family's catering business to grow and hopefully even start selling their products overseas.

Those who know Qwenton will most likely remember his involvement in the pipe band! We were pleased to hear he's still going strong on the bagpipes and is a member of the National Youth Pipe Band of New Zealand. At the start of July, he'll be flying with the band to Canada, where they'll play at 'Piping Hot Summer Drummer' - a prestigious Bagpiping summer school which will challenge them to go to the next level. They'll also play at a couple of competitions and even a Highland Games.

If you're keen to support the National Youth Pipe Band of New Zealand, go ahead and visit their fundraiser here.