Rachel was a Grade 5 student at Healesville Primary School during the Black Saturday bushfires of February 2009. Her artwork 'Firestorm' was created at that time. A year later, Rachel reflected on her experience during Black Saturday.

Physical Description

2 pages of hand-written text in black ink on lined white paper.


This written account adds to our understanding not only of Rachel's artwork, which is part of the Victorian Bushfires Collection, but also gives us an insight into the experience and perspectives of children during a major bushfire.

More Information

  • Collection Names

    Victorian Bushfires Collection, Healesville Primary School Bushfire Artworks Collection

  • Collecting Areas

    Childhood, Home & Community, Sustainable Futures

  • Acquisition Information


  • Author

    Miss Rachel, Healesville, Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia, 2009
    Created as part of a school art project at Healesville Primary School

  • Place & Date Depicted

    Healesville, Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia, 7 Feb 2009

  • Date of Event

    Healesville, Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia, 7 Feb 2009
    Artwork depicts Black Saturday Bushfires

  • Inscriptions

    This is the full text of Rachel's account: 'On the day of Black Saturday, I was/on a houseboat in Eildon, on a family holiday/with my mum (Theresa) and my dad (Leo)./We had been on the houseboat for four days/before the fires broke out. At the time we/had no idea that there were any fires at all,/where we were there was no phone coverage and/we had no radio. On the Saturday we went back into Eildon to/pick up my brother and his girlfriend. We realised/something was not right, as we neared the Wall,/we were covered in very black smoke and could/barely see. The wind was also blowing very/hard making it hard to sail the boat. We/pulled into a bank and tied up the Houseboat. My/dad and I set off to pick up my brother in our small/fishing boat, it was scary the waves were knocking/us around and we had trouble seeing. When we found my brother Mark and his girlfriend,/Elise, we found out how lucky we were, they had just/driven through Thornton and Buxton, the fire not/ far behind them. Nearly all the roads leading out of Eildon/were blocked, when it was safe, we headed for/home. It took us four hours to get back to Heales-/vile. Yea and Murrundindi had fires as well/so we had to go the long way. We drove through/Kilmore where the fires had been and could not/ believe our eyes, it was horrible. When we got back home to Healesville,/it was getting dark, at the end of our road we could/still see the mountains on fire, they were glowing./This is where the idea for my painting, "Firestorm,"/came from. Rachel [name withheld], Grade 5 Healesville Primary School 2009'

  • Classification

    Sustainability, Natural disasters, Bushfires

  • Category

    History & Technology

  • Discipline


  • Type of item


  • 2D format

    175 mm (Width), 225 mm (Height)
    2 pages

  • Keywords

    Bushfires, Children