Document Type

Conference Proceeding


Australian Council of University Art and Design Schools


Faculty of Education and Arts


School of Communication and Arts / Centre for Research in Entertainment, Arts, Technology, Education and Communications




This article was originally published as: Stevenson, K. J., & Girak, S. (2013). Creative River Journeys: Using reflective practice within a practice led research context.In ACUADS Conference 2012: Region and Isolation: The changing function of art & design education within diasporic cultures and borderless communities. Perth, Western Australia. Australian Council of University Art and Design Schools. Original article available here


The past two years have seen Kylie Stevenson deeply immersed in designing and enacting a PhD research project, Creative River Journeys. The project involves her working with a group of nine artist-researchers who, like Kylie, are also completing their PhDs (or research Masters) at Edith Cowan University, Western Australia, and for whom creative practice is a key component of their projects, some identifying as practice led researchers and others not. The co-author of this paper, Sue Girak, is one of those artist-researcher participants. Prior to engaging in the Creative River Journey project, Sue had elected to use the methodology a/r/tography that Kylie also uses. Sue is completing a M.Ed. by research, with a studio practice component. Other artist-researcher participants come from the disciplines of visual arts, performing arts and creative writing. This paper will show how, through conversation and reflection, Kylie and Sue have worked together to document the critical moments – that is, moments of significance or change – in Sue’s creative and research practice using a reflective practice tool called the Creative River Journey. Kylie is particularly driven by her deep interest in identifying meaningful methodologies for practice-led researchers. In this paper, Kylie will give a brief overview of the PhD project including Sue and Kylie’s chosen methodology, a/r/tography. Kylie will outline the theoretical foundations of the project that, like a/r/tography, involve the conceptual terrains of art practice, research and teaching. Using Sue’s practice as a case study, Kylie and Sue will illustrate how the Creative River Journey acts as reflective practice to document the creative process, thus facilitating connections for the artist-researcher between practice and research. Kylie and Sue will propose, with reference to this artist-researcher’s Creative River Journey, that the reflective practice is a method of facilitating and documenting practice-led research.

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