In Summary

Swinburne University of Technology Diploma of Visual Merchandising students have collaborated with Ringwood shopping centre Eastland, to create a display and backdrop for the centre’s latest Autumn-Winter campaign.

The display, which is based around an Omni-mirror, encouraging shoppers to engage with the display by having their photo taken in front of the backdrop, for the chance to win prizes from the centre’s retailers.

Swinburne Visual Merchandising course leader, Justin Larsen, said that the students had been working hard on the project for the last six weeks.

“The project has required our current students, as well as some of our alumna and teachers, to work on this project from the very beginning stages of its conception, right through to the final stages of assembling the display on Sunday night before it was open to the public on the Monday,” Mr Larsen said.

“Our students had to undertake a large range of tasks with this project, which begun with a briefing from Eastland’s marketing department, and then continued with concept design and then the actual decoration and construction of the display.”

To complement Eastland’s existing Autumn-Winter campaign, the students have designed a display that replicates a forest scene, with hundreds of hand sewn leaves giving the illusion of trees blowing in the wind.

By being involved in the design and creation of the display, the students have been given a unique insight into the visual merchandising industry before they finish their course.

“At Swinburne, we always place a strong emphasis on industry collaboration, as it enables the students to not just utilise their practical skills learnt throughout their course, but to also have an understanding of how the visual merchandising industry works,” Mr Larsen said.

“Eastland is one of our main partners, but we also have a number of relationships with other organisations, including the Springvale Homemaker Centre and Prahran Central. This gives our students access to a range of projects and work environments, prior to course completion, while also giving them projects to put in their final professional portfolios.”

The display draws inspiration from the Yarra Valley, encouraging the Visual Merchandising student’s to draw inspiration from their geographical surroundings. 

Diploma of Visual Merchandising is an 18 month course that can be completed at Swinburne’s Wantirna campus.