RGS Guildford courtyard with students

Chris Riddell OBE visits on National Poetry Day

On National Poetry Day, and we were thrilled to welcome the multi-award winning former Children’s Laureate Chris Riddell OBE to school. The boys were captivated from the moment they entered the Auditorium to find Chris already drawing imagined creatures and himself as a small boy drawing on his father’s wall.

He talked about his love of poetry, and read several poems from books that he has illustrated, then
answered questions while drawing the questioners and/or the answers to the questions. He finished with an unmistakeable lightning sketch of Mr Wilkes issuing instructions! There then followed a lengthy book signing, in which he chatted to the queue of boys before he crossed to Art for a series of workshops.

The magic continued in the Art Department with three, 30-minute characterisation workshops delivered to junior boys.  Students were lining up keenly to show Chris their drawings of humorous, human-like animals. Some were lucky enough to have a comment written on their page, others a signed Riddell drawing to take home. His mesmerising live drawing, using the visualiser and large screen, meant budding art enthusiasts could closely observe, ask questions and then have a go themselves.

A truly inspiring and fantastic, once in a life-time opportunity for the students.