What inspired you to start OLD SCHOOL NEW SCHOOL?

I am a dreamer and design education specialist. I had taught design for a long time, and always noticed that the folios whose content showed the touch of the human hand were always more exciting and intriguing. While the digital folios all had a bland sameness to them.

As I continued my teaching, I observed that students who had difficulties focusing and applying themselves were transformed when they had to make something by hand. Be it a hand bound book, or a wooden box, students were excited and engaged. They loved learning this way.

Then when I was studying my masters, I learned about "tacit" knowledge, and it all made sense. I realized that our learning system was placing too much emphasis on the intelligence of the head, and ignoring the intelligence of the body and heart. We are educated to death (in the ways of the head), yet we ignore the intelligence of the body (tacit knowledge). Tacit knowledge is difficult to transmit via words. When you ride a bike, swim, or play a musical instrument, you are using tacit or embodied knowledge. I wanted to prioritize acquisition of tacit knowledge. Plus I was very disenfranchised with the way our universities treat students and teachers alike. I wanted to educate on my own terms.

the interview in full- length will be published
in a book after our journey.
stay tuned – #thewalzhappens


veronica grow is graphic designer, typography and education specialist.

in 2012 she founded the melbourne-based school for communication design and typography OLD SCHOOL NEW SCHOOL in order to disrupt traditional educational models by taking things back to the basics, focusing on tacit knowledge and the inseparable relationship between the individual and craft.

"we are responding to what we view as the over-commercialization and drive for profit of the current design school system. We do this via a progressive radical educational experiment which aspires to invest your experience of learning with joy and wonder when you discover the reward of personally affecting change and touching audiences with your project outcomes.“

we asked veronica about new teaching methods for design students.



date: april, 2015
city: melbourne
interview with: veronica grow
www: oldschoolnewschool

"Design is all about identity and branding. A designer cannot design an identity or brand for another entity without first understanding their own identity. It begins with the individual."


OLD SCHOOL NEW SCHOOL runs a design program that is unique within Australia. Students learn to draw letters by hand using flat and expansion style nibs, so that they understand the unique basis of letterform construction.

“In the fast era of today, it’s important to remember that Typography reaches far beyond the font list under the type menu on the computer, and is about more than simply typing out words, choosing a type face and go!”

Veronica told us that students are currently writing and hand lettering their own personal design manifestos. This forces them to think about why they have become designers in the first place, and what they want to be. It forces them to think about the role that design plays within society. Then they need to think about how they can give their message more impetus, by dressing it in carefully created lettering.

all images are from old school new school.