Diploma of Applied Fashion Design and Merchandising/ Advanced Diploma of Applied Fashion Design and Merchandising (MST50116/MST60116) student Brooke Showers and TAFE Queensland fashion tutor Yasmin Bridges were selected to assist internationally-renowned costume designer and TAFE Queensland alumni Jozef Koda in designing and constructing two unique puppet costumes that were featured in the 2019 Woodford Folk Festival’s closing ceremony.
Jozef – who recently started his own company J1K Innovative Costume Technology and has created show-stopping pieces for stage productions around the globe – worked with Brooke and Yasmin over two days to create two large-scale puppet costumes, sharing his design and fabrication techniques with them in the process.
Nineteen-year-old Brooke said she gained plenty of knowledge from her experience with Jozef, and that she can’t wait to apply what she’d learned to her own work.
“I want to become a costume designer when I graduate from TAFE Queensland, so this was a really big deal for me,” Brooke said.
“Jozef taught me so much. He really took the time to explain things and teach me different techniques, and he gave me a lot of advice on things I could incorporate into my own designs during my studies this year,” she said.
Working under Jozef’s guidance, the team helped create two costumes for “Emir”, a four-metre tall goat-like puppet central to the ceremony’s story that required seven puppeteers to manoeuvre. Budding designer Brooke said she helped body wrap and design a pattern for what they wanted the costume to look like on one puppet, in addition to helping with the construction of the tail-piece of one of the phoenix costumes that appeared in the ceremony.
“It was kind of surreal, but also really cool to bae involved in something showcased to so many people. I saw it on someone’s Snapchat story and had this proud moment of knowing, ‘I helped make that!’,” Brooke said.
TAFE Queensland Faculty Director for Creative and Digital (East Coast), Angela Lisle said it was an amazing opportunity for Brooke and Yasmin to be able to witness someone as successful as Jozef in action.
“Having been a student of TAFE Queensland himself, Jozef is an example of where our students’ qualifications can lead them in the future,” Angela said.
“Jozef’s career in fashion began on the Sunshine Coast just like them, and it has taken him all over the world, with his creations featured in awe-inspiring productions and gracing famous stages like the Lido de Paris and the Kremlin.
“This experience has provided Brooke in particular with the chance to learn from his journey and soak up his incredible knowledge, while giving her the chance to see something she has worked on showcased to thousands of people at an iconic and highly popular event.”