Friday 4th February 2022
at 7.30 pm via ZOOM
The prevalence of Omicron Coronavirus has meant that once again the AGM of the Frimley & Camberley Society of Arts will be via Zoom.
The Minutes of the AGM held last year can be found via this link:
The prevalence of Omicron Coronavirus has meant that once again the AGM of the Frimley & Camberley Society of Arts will be via Zoom.
The Minutes of the AGM held last year can be found via this link:
Joel Wareing is a practicing artist and teacher who lives in Surrey. He was born in South Africa and moved to England in 2001. His work focuses mainly on people in urban environments and he likes to pay particular attention to dramatic sunlight. Joel has demonstrated to the FCSA before in oils but the technique he uses is equally good to use with acrylics.
To begin Joel had mapped out the cafe scene he is going to paint in pencil on canvas. He has a colour and black & white photo of the scene for reference but he tends to work from the black & white one for the tonal values. The first thing he is going to do is fix the pencil with a light hairspray. It is important to ensure this fixative is dry before adding any paint to the canvas.
The first colour he uses is Cadmium Yellow. He wants to put in his light areas; anywhere that has direct sunlight. This is essentially an underpainting so the paint is being mixed with water and quite a lot of pigment. Then he takes Raw Sienna (or Yellow Ochre if preferred) which is a darker tone of yellow but still very warm. He uses a fairly big brush to block in the light parts of the painting.
The next stage is to look at the dark tones. He switches to a clean pot of water. It is very important to use clean water so that the yellows do not muddy the transparent colours he is going to use now. Ultra Marine Blue and Alizarin Crimson to produce the nice purple shadows. He points out that he has gone from yellow to purple, its opposite colour on the colour wheel.
After painting the red purple colour on the top left he mixes Ultra Marine Blue and Burnt Sienna to produce a darker shadow colour. He likes to vary the colours in the shadows. Ultra Marine Blue and Cadmium Yellow produces a deep green which he also puts into the dark areas of the painting.
Joel is working on cotton canvas that has been primed with Gesso. The additional coat of Gesso makes a good surface to work on especially for this next stage when Joel uses Willow Charcoal to re-capture some of the drawing and to make the figures stand out more. The charcoal drawing will be visible in the finished painting. This is an element of his work that he likes as he thinks it gives structure to the work. Originally he used this technique in his oils and has found it works equally well with acrylics. Joel was influenced by Richard Smits, an American artist, who also uses charcoal in a similar way.
The next stage is when Joel puts a large amount of gloss varnish on his palette to mix it into the additional washes he is going to put on now. Once again it is very important to use the hairspray fixative again at this stage to stop the charcoal from mixing with the paint. He is essentially using transparent glazes to build up his darks. He was asked if you can use gloss medium for this. Yes, gloss medium would work too but Joel likes this particular gloss varnish by Pebeo.
The benefit of using this gloss varnish is that the paint dries and the colours look as fresh and good as they did when they were being painted. Acrylics without varnish tend to dry to look a bit flat. Joel was asked which paints he uses and he said he uses both Winsor & Newton and Daler-Rowney but he does not find brands a big issue. Joel likes to keep to a limited colour palette. He uses Daler-Rowley for the dark areas with the varnish. Colour transparency is very important. Raw Sienna, Burnt Sienna, Ultra Marine Blue and Alizarin Crimson are transparent colours. The unvarnished light areas are Winsor & Newton Cadmiums. He was asked if he would eventually varnish the whole painting and he said he does not do this. He likes to separate the lights and darks, it makes the painting more 3D to his mind.
At the break Joel was asked to give the audience a close up of the two photographs he was working from. The photo was taken at a cafe near Sloane Square just outside the Saatchi Gallery. Joel is a teacher and he likes to go to London in the summer holidays to get his reference material. He usually works on series of paintings. There is an advantage in working on several paintings at the same time especially when working in oils as he can let the layers dry properly on one painting as he works on the next. The brushes he is using are Rosemary & Co Ivory Filberts No 4 and No 6. He finds synthetic brushes keep their shape better.
Up to this point Joel has not used any white paint but he is going to use quite a lot of white now to mix his mid-tones. He changes his water once again and uses Crimson, Raw Sienna and Ultra Marine Blue to make a variety of different types of grey. He puts it down freshly, he does not blend the paint at all. He wants to ensure that the original Raw Sienna is still going to show through.
The composition of this painting is in line with the rule of thirds. The main figure lies on one of the thirds as does his leg across a third of the painting; the two panels of dark colours divide the painting along those lines too. Joel now uses Titanium White with a touch of Cadmium Yellow to put in the highlights on the man’s back, the legs of the chairs, his shoes, and items on the tables. The good thing about painting in acrylics is that it is possible to return to areas such as the mid-tones or to the darks with the glazing technique to deepen the colours.
When it comes to framing, Joel likes a simple white frame such as the one on this painting. Some will recognise this painting from the demonstration in oils that Joel gave FCSA when we were able to meet at the Adult Education studio instead of watching on Zoom.
Joel was asked again whether the charcoal lines would still be visible in the finished painting and he said that they would. He likes this effect and it certainly gives this painting a distinctive look.
The time had come for the Zoom Demonstration to come to an end. From reference material that was frankly mono-tonal Joel had produced a warm, interesting, pavement cafe scene full of urban life. The heightened sense of sunlight and the blues and purples in the shadows seemed reminiscent of French impressionist paintings and the subject matter, being a cafe scene, perhaps works to reinforce this effect.
Screen grabs and write up by Carole Head
Members are gradually returning to the Adult Education Centre studio in Camberley to paint together on a Friday night. There was a happy little band there last week and the studio will be open again this coming Friday. Come and join us. £4.00 per evening. Tea, coffee, soft drinks provided and a warm welcoming atmosphere despite everyone being seated on separate tables in plenty of airy space to protect against Covid.
There will be a Zoom Demo on Friday 5th November with Joel Wareing of a street scene with figures in Acrylics. As this demonstration has reverted to Zoom while Covid numbers remain high the studio will be closed. Cost to join this demo is £5.00 for members, £6.00 for non members.
Notes & photos taken by C. Head
Liz Seward is a long-standing member of Frimley & Camberley Society of Arts and she began the day by reminiscing about the rooms we were in and all the many occasions she had taught in them. She has been a Chairman of our Society and she is very familiar with what is involved in running the Annual Exhibition. We are lucky to have benefitted from her wealth of experience and professional know how over many years. During today’s workshop Liz will illustrate ways to add interest and texture to watercolour paintings using watercolour pencils, colour pencils, watercolour crayons and marker pens.
Liz showed several examples of her work to illustrate what happens when using these additions to pure watercolour. The first photo is a flower painting although Liz said it could almost be two paintings with the tea and toasted teacakes making its own composition. The use of coloured pencils works beautifully for the kind of details seen here.
Liz is also well-known for painting lovely woodland scenes. She likes to paint ‘en plein air’. For this she finds watercolour pencils are very convenient.
It is a good idea to start with a pencil drawing. Liz recommends that you always do a pencil drawing first when working from a photograph. This is a tonal sketch that Liz did of Sprat’s Hatch Bridge on the Basingstoke Canal.
Recognising negative spaces can make such a difference. Using the under-painting to outline the positive objects is very effective. Liz used this half-finished floral painting to illustrate this.
She suggested that some people might like to use one of the either outline of trees or pears to develop the idea of painting the negative space first. Quite a few people took up her suggestion.
She often works with four colours to do the under painting: a yellow, a red and two blues. Today she will use Yellow Hansa medium, Burnt Sienna, Cobalt Blue (reflects both red and yellow and creates good light greens, not so good for dark shades), and Prussian Blue (has a yellow bias and is better for making greens). Creating shades of green could be a whole workshop in itself! Liz advises against using green colours themselves in underpainting as they tend to become muddy as soon as other colours are added to them. Liz also advises against Payne’s Grey for much the same reason. An artist who uses negative painting to good effect is Linda Kemp: https://lindakemp.com
Here is the demonstration Liz did with the tree outline. She put down the four under paint colours and then painted in the negative shape with darker shades still using the same four colours.
Here is FCSA Chairman, Peter Tuitt, working with the tree outline. He managed to produce two versions during the course of the day.
Helen also used the tree outline to experiment with negative space painting.
Tracey decided to have a go with the outline of the pears.
While Val applied negative spaces and under painting to her pansies.
Craig also worked on two versions of his waterlilies.
This is Carole attempting a floral painting while applying what was being taught. She did not know, until Liz told her, that Opera Rose is not colour fast and will fade with time. Such a shame as it is a fabulous vibrant pink colour.
Watercolour pencils: This is a set of Caran d’Ache watercolour pencils. It is possible to buy them in different size sets, some specialising in particular colours such as flesh tones, greys, earth colours, etc., it is also possible to just buy a single colour that you want once you have got a basic set. Liz demonstrated how by adding a little water on a brush and painting over the colour the effect of watercolour is achieved. She warned that artists should NEVER put the pencil directly into the water pot. The water will just go up the barrel and ruin the pencil. However, you can load your brush with colour by taking a wet paintbrush over the tip.
Colour Pencils: Liz also has a fabulous set of dry Permanent Colour Pencils by Caran d’Ache which she was given as a thank you for a workshop she gave. She recommends using moments of boredom to practice using pencils to produce a gradient of tone from pressing very hard to very, very lightly. These pencil colours can be overlaid but should not be wet.
Neocolours: Some of the participants of this workshop had bought the set that Liz produced when her daughter-in-law was running the art shop in Camberley and ordered these sets to be produced on Liz’s behalf. They are water soluble pastels.
Marker Pens: Liz also demonstrated how Winsor & Newton Pro Marker twin tip pens can be another useful tool. She added a little water on a brush to move the ink from the marker to produce another interesting effect. This works especially well when depicting silver birch trees.
Brushes: These Da Vinci Chisel brushes are what Liz likes to use to create her distinctive watercolour style of painting. She also likes the Pro Art Sablene brushes that are available now for painting in watercolour.
Watercolour Paper: Liz recommends working on hot pressed watercolour paper when using colour pencils. There are three different kinds of watercolour paper: Hot pressed, Not and Rough. Here is a good illustration of the difference between them along with an explanation of which is used for what purpose from Ken Bromley Art Supplies website.
Perhaps one of the first choices you will encounter when selecting a watercolour paper is choosing a surface type. Generally, watercolour papers are one of three different surface types; Hot Pressed (HP), Cold Pressed (NOT) and Rough. Hot pressed is the smoothest watercolour paper and is great for artists looking to render their subjects in fine detail. This paper is popular with illustrators and designers as it gives a flat finish good for reproduction. Cold Pressed paper has a medium textured surface favoured by beginners as it is compatible with a variety of techniques and applications. Rough, as suggested by the name, is the most textured watercolour paper. The deep pits in the paper are brilliant if you want to get the most out of the granulation of your watercolour paints. This heavily textured paper is well suited to those with a loose watercolour painting style.
The four hours of the workshop went by so quickly and everyone was so busy painting right up to the very last minute that there was not time to put all the work together for a plenary. The photos here are by no means a complete account of everyone’s work and these notes were taken while being one of the workshop participants. Hopefully they give some idea of what was learnt during a very enjoyable workshop.
Several members of FCSA will be taking part in this workshop at Camberley Adult Education Centre on Saturday from 10 am – 2 pm.
This workshop is called Watercolour Plus so that watercolourists who have watercolour pencils, dry coloured pencils, white acrylic or coloured acrylic inks, watercolour pens etc., can have some fun. Do not worry if you do not have all or any of these as people are often happy to share. Please bring your own reference materials/still life. Liz advises not to make it too difficult.
Remember to bring a packed lunch. Coffee and tea will be provided.
Judit Matthews is a Hungarian born illustrative artist working from her studio in Banstead. She has been in the UK since 1994. After her ‘A’ levels she started a teacher training course in art and geography. She wanted it to be art and English, so she took a gap year and came to England as an au pair. While here she met her husband and she stayed. She began the evening by showing everyone her studio where she runs workshops and on-line classes.
She also showed everyone some of the work she has on the walls and in her art stand. It is mainly of wildlife; foxes, hares, owls, birds, but she has also illustrated maps and painted town and seaside scenes. Her work has a distinctive look with lots of detail in an illustrative style. She has also recently illustrated three children’s books.
In her work Judit uses ink, then watercolour and on larger paintings she adds collage. Since this process is quite slow, she will use three different paintings to demonstrate it this evening. She uses Winsor & Newton Black Indian Ink and a mapping nib. Her on-line students can use a fine-liner such as Muji pens to make things faster. Be sure to get the the non-shiny ones as the other Muji pens take longer to dry and become waterproof.
This evening Judit will demonstrate the pen & ink on a deer that she has drawn up in pencil already. Judit prefers the quality of ink and the variation in line that is possible with ink, despite the fact that the nib can catch on the texture of watercolour paper sometimes. You need to be very confident with drawing the lines especially when drawing curves. Do not stop or it will look unnatural. It is possible to teach technique, but it is difficult to teach imagination and composition. It is personal and depends on what you like.
Judit likes wildlife. She is seldom without her sketch book especially when she goes on holiday. She also takes lots of photos. She uses Pinterest and Instagram too for ideas and images, but be wary of copyright issues. Some of her inspiration comes from Hungarian folk art and folk stories. After developing ideas, sketching plants and flowers, Judit works at simplifying them into line drawings. Being right-handed she works from left to right across the page. Always clean off excess ink from the pen at the end to prolong the life of the nib. The ink takes some time to dry so for the next stage Judit has a drawing of a fox looking towards a little house on a hill.
Judit has a well-used portable set of Winsor & Newton watercolours which she keeps re-filling with her favourite colours. She also buys different brands to get the colours she wants. She likes to work with a maximum of 5 colours and she uses her knowledge of the colour wheel to create a harmonious effect of juxtapositioning one colour with its opposite in the painting. The fox and trees have been simplified and she will use mainly oranges and blues.
For the orange she mixes Cadmium Yellow, Cadmium Red, and sometimes Cadmium Orange from the tube. To begin with she uses flat colour for the first layer starting with the fox and the two trees in the foreground. She then mixes Winsor Blue, Vermillion and Indigo for the mountains and hills behind. Eventually she uses Cerulean Blue for the sky. She adds a little Viridian to the blue for the hill in the foreground. She does not wet the paper first as working dry has more control.
Over the flat first layer Judit starts to add more pigment. Gamboge Yellow helps lift the slight opaqueness of Cadmium Yellow. Indigo and Burnt Umber is added to the orange for the tree and bushes behind the house. Viridian and Indigo darken the tree on the left. Once this layer is dry it is time to do some stippling or little dots, a kind of pointillism. Judit also assures us she has a plan for the foreground. She shows us a painting of a VW she has done before to demonstrate the effect she will be aiming at.
She fills in the leaves on the trees and then tackles the foreground. She has decided the light source is coming from top right so makes strong dark lines from the left-hand corner and using her brush to make the shape of the foliage she adds some leaves to these. She also likes to add shadows to the underside and other side of the object from the light source. This almost creates a 3D effect.
Judit used a white Posca pen to draw the white lines of the branches on the left of fox painting. The white Posca pen is great to cover up little errors such as small ink marks that have been made by mistake. They come in lots of different colours. This little badger picture was done using Posca pens.
For the third stage of the process Judit is going to use an owl picture she has painted to demonstrate the way she adds collage to her work. For this she uses a self-healing cutting board, a scalpel, PVA glue, a small brush, and a chocolate tray to hold the glue. She has a made a large collection of different papers of all kinds, from expensive Japanese printed paper to wallpaper from places like B&Q.
She chooses paper with similar shades of colour to her painting. It is very important to use a decent thickness of paper, at least 250 grams, or the paper will wrinkle and buckle with the effect of the wet glue. Collage gives another dimension to the work. Judit also likes to go around the collage with a fine liner Muji pen, not the ink, when the glue has dried.
Over the course of the demonstration Judit gave lots of different pieces of information about herself and her art. She won the Surrey Life magazine’s Landscape Artist of the Year in 2017. In 2000 she took part in Channel 4’s Watercolour Challenge, which she did not enjoy much because it was dominated by the needs of the production staff to the point where she got very cold because she could not put on clothing for the sake of continuity.
On a much more positive note, she has exhibited at the App Art Exhibition in Godalming and her work has been accepted by the Society of Women Artists (SWA). She has two pieces in their current exhibition at the Mall Galleries. She has also illustrated these children’s books written by Tina Talbot, which are available from Amazon.
Lockdown was good news for her on-line classes. They take place on Saturday from 10.00 – 11.00 am. The cost is £5.00. She also runs workshops from her studio in Banstead. The full day workshop is £45.00 for 10.30 – 3.00 pm. For more information see her Facebook page.
The Annual Exhibition could not take place last year because of the Coronavirus and it was postponed until 10th & 11th September this year rather than holding in July as had been happening for some time.
The Exhibition has now moved online and can be found here.
The Reception Evening was held on 9th September 2021 and was attended by the wonderfully colourful Mayor of Surrey Heath, Councillor Sarah Jane Croke.
The sales from the exhibition were very pleasing indeed especially given that the number of people at the Reception Evening was down from previous years, not surprising given that many people have not been attending gatherings indoors.
In all 19 paintings were sold, 14 Ready-to-Hang and 5 Portfolios. It is very good to know that all of Val Brooks’ beautiful pastels sold.
This year the judge was Eleanor Harvey from The Frame Centre who kindly selected the following three prize winners:
The Winsland Prize for the best watercolour/mixed media painting in the exhibition went to Lesley Kilner for her painting “Mouse”.
The Themed Competition entitled “Lockdown Dreams” was won by Olga Lucia Salgado for her painting “Changes in Life”.
The Committee Prize entitled “Water” was won by Tracy Allen for her acrylic painting which has subsequently sold.
The Jerry Seward Trophy which is also known as The People’s Choice was won by Lesley Kilner for “Raindrops on My Windowpane”.
Peter Tuitt asked Liz Seward this year if she would donate one of her paintings to be raffled to raise money for the Brush with Art Group at Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice. Peter Tuitt set a target of £500 and he was delighted to announce that the sum of £512 was raised. The winner of Liz’s lovely painting “Turfhill, Lightwater Country Park” was Mick Keeley.
Congratulations to Peter Tuitt and the committee team for getting through to the point where it was possible to hold the Annual Exhibition once again. Thank you to everyone who attended.
Kristin began by introducing herself. She is an artist who lives in Yateley. She is currently doing an MA in Fine Art at Reading University. She has exhibited in a variety of venues including the Mall Galleries ‘Best of British Art’ and ING Discerning Eye 2020.
This demonstration was going to be a challenge because Kristin will be working ‘alla prima’, Alla prima is an Italian phrase that means ‘at first attempt‘. It refers to a wet-on-wet approach whereby wet paint is applied to previous layers of still-wet paint, often in a single sitting.
She is going to be working on Arches oil paper. She likes to prepare the paper with a mixture of half and half turps and linseed oil to which she adds a tiny amount of black paint to create a pale grey base. She uses Jackson’s Shellsol T because it has no smell and is not expensive.
Kristin chose this photo reference for her demonstration because she knows from experience that artists find a semi profile difficult especially when the face is looking slightly down. She had laminated the reference photo so that she could demonstrate her thinking by drawing the lines on the photograph and then transposing them to the painting.
She begins by dividing the face looking at the ratios of facial features, hairline, nose, lips. She then marks in the basic outlines constantly checking the angles using her paintbrush to determine the line of the shadow on the face, for instance, before drawing it on to the page. This is called triangulation. She finds it a better method of painting a portrait while some artists prefer using the grid method.
This first stage can go wrong but it will be constantly checked and can be corrected when it comes to blocking in the colour. Kristin likes to outline the socket of the eye where she looks for the shadow shapes formed by the shape of the face. Remember the ear is located differently here because the face is tilted down. The bottom of the ear would usually align with the bottom of the nose but in this case, it is higher, from her eyebrow to halfway up her cheek.
The next stage was to block in working from dark cool to the lightest warm. Kristin uses a form of the Zorn Palette. The Zorn palette refers to a palette of colours attributed to the great Swedish artist, Anders Zorn (18 February 1860 – 22 August 1920). It consists of just four colours being yellow ochre, ivory black, vermilion and titanium white. Cadmium red light is commonly used in place of vermilion by modern day artists.
Kristin likes Indian yellow rather than yellow ochre. She will also be using ultra marine blue. Turquoise is another colour she really likes and so she has this colour on her palette too. The limited palette reduces the choices to be made to one of four tones. It is a good idea to develop what is around the face too as the background affects the painting. Black, ultra marine, yellow and white creates a dark turquoise blue that will make the background colour.
The paint brushes Kristin uses are square synthetic brushes that seem to work well on this Arches oil paper. The lightest areas are on her cheek, forehead, and the bridge of her nose. Next for her hair. To make the brown colour Kristin mixed black, red and Indian yellow. People often over think the hair. It is really a mass of tones so Kristin will paint it in blocks.
The model is wearing quite a lot of make-up and has very red lips. She used alizarin crimson darkened with a little blue for the bottom lip then adding some cadmium red to make it zing a little and white for the highlights on the top lip.
Using the same four tones Kristin returned to her shoulders and neck. It is a good idea to keep working on the whole painting. With oils the paint remains live for a few days. This would not be true if it were being painted in acrylics. If using acrylic paints, it can help to use a retardant.
After the break it was time to work on some of the details and for this Kristin uses smaller synthetic Scroll brushes. She begins by tackling the eye which is at a difficult angle to get the position of the pupil and iris. She softened the edges on the nose working dark into light and then painted the eye on the far side of the face. The philtrum under the nose should be hinted at rather than made too distinct.
Kristin finds that working on paper rather than canvas means the paint sinks in and can be easily blended. Hairlines are another area where it helps to avoid a strong line. When painting the ear, she paints the dark first then the light. She likes to name the shapes she sees. To her mind there is a Y in the upper part.
At this point Kristin began to review what she had painted, she added highlights in the hair, worked a little on the jaw line and brought the background down to the shoulder. She was not going to be able to finish the painting as the session was coming to a close, but it had been fascinating to watch how quickly she developed a portrait in oil over a period of just a couple of hours.
Kristin is going to be an Artist in Residence at a school next term, but she did say she may be running classes in the future too.
If you are interested in taking classes with Kristin, she can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information, see her website.
She is also on Instagram.
This was the first Zoom demonstration that Frimley & Camberley Society of Arts has had where members were asked to make a £5 payment to attend. It was pleasing to have 26 people subscribe and the feedback from members has been very positive.