Firstly, how very kind of Pauline and Stuart to invite us to paint in their beautiful garden this summer. Obviously they booked the weather for us too when they set the date as we couldn’t have had a nicer evening to paint in.

Pauline's Garden2From 5.30p.m. onwards on Wednesday 14th June 2017,  people arrived from the Rayleigh Art Group to enjoy the evening of chat, painting and supping a lovely cuppa with home made cakes. We are very lucky that we have such a first class baker amongst us, so courtesy of Val we had the choice of Coffee and Walnut cake, Lemon Drizzle cake or Victoria Sponge cake. Thank you very much Val for catering for our needs, it was enjoyed by all.

What a beautiful garden Pauline has, there are flowers in abundance in every which way you turn, just too many to choose from but some of us took lots of photos too so we can work our way through them throughout the rest of the year. Stuart must have been working really hard to make the garden so spectacular, most of us came home and thought we should maybe spend tomorrow gardening!

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Many thanks to both Pauline and Stuart for letting us share their evening, garden and hospitality.

Report and photos courtesy of Cathy Newton


Outdoor Painting – Wednesday 14th June 2017

Just a quick reminder that Rayleigh Art Group will be meeting in Pauline Grove’s Garden on the evening of Wednesday 14th June 2017 at 5:30pm.

For those who need it Pauline’s address is: Catkins, Rayleigh Downs Road, Rayleigh SS6 7LR (just over the bridge on right hand side)

This is an opportunity to paint in Pauline’s garden commencing at 5:30pm, whilst at the same time to sit and chat with friends, so why not come along and spend an enjoyable few hours – the weather forecast is looking good.


Sue had come from Bradwell-on-Sea to do an acrylic demonstration for us this Wednesday evening. We were feeling quite excited about this one, Sue had brought many examples of her work both in acrylic and also in watercolour, all of which looked vibrant and of views that we recognised easily.IMG_20170524_194512

She had prepared a block canvas in warmish pink/brownish shade and then spent around an hour before she came putting in the main shapes to make it easier for herself when painting with the main colours. As promised it was a marine picture so plenty of water and then houseboats, but the thing that had attracted Sue to the picture was actually a line of bright washing hanging across one of the houseboats. Strange the things that attract us to paint pictures isn’t it? We all like different and quirky things.

IMG_20170524_211022While Sue started to dab paint onto the canvas she explained that she had been influenced by Hashim Akib when he had been to their art group and done a demonstration. A lot of us could understand this as we too have seen his work and watched him demonstrate and also been inspired by him.

Sue dabbed various shades of blue across the canvas putting marks from the sky to the water and also to the sides of the picture, then adding either yellow or reds into the mix and again dabbing odd strokes of paint in varying places on the picture. By the time tea break came the canvas had quite a lot of colour on it and the sky was looking amazing with lovely big fluffy clouds.

After tea break and the raffle, we all sat back down and watched as Sue really pulled IMG_20170524_214240the painting together and then in the last half hour or so she added finer detail in darks and very light colours and of course the fabulous red washing on the line.

Very impressive, lovely lady and one to definitely have a go at doing.

Happy painting everyone!

Report courtesy Cathy Newton and photos, Colin Mossman

Demonstration by Sue Spiers–Marine Scene in Acrylics

On Wednesday 24th May 2017, Rayleigh Art Group will be hosting a demonstration by SueSue Spiers, ‘Marine Scene in Acrylics’. This will take place in the Cedars Centre, Castle Road, Rayleigh and commences at 7.30pm.

All members are invited together with guests – there is a small charge for non-members but includes Tea/Coffee and biscuits.

Sue lives in Bradwell-on-Sea, on the East Coast, and has painted professionally for over twenty eight years.  The seaside, boats and watery places are the subjects for acrylic on canvas and ‘en plein air’ in watercolours.  Sue exhibits with ‘Salty Dogs’, a collective of nautical artists, takes part in Burnham  Art Trail and has her work for sale in ‘The White Harte’  in Burnham and the Taplin Gallery in Woodbridge, she also shows in exhibitions throughout the year.

Rayleigh Trinity Fair

We have heard from the organisers now that the art exhibition will start at 10.30, in spite of all the main events still commencing at 12 noon and being advertised as such.
(If you look at the Trinity Fair Rayleigh web page you will see a poster illustrating this.)
As you know we have decided not to exhibit as a club but if anyone would like to take part and exhibit as an individual you should contact Steve Cooper of Haddon Events, on

2017’s AT HOME

Can you believe that yet another year has come around and we have now hosted the 2017’s ‘At Home’?

As usual we held this social evening in The Todman Centre in Castle Road, a lovely venue with plenty of room, seating and kitchen area for all the naughty but nice food that is brought in by everyone. Unfortunately not supported by as many members as in the past few years but enough of us to have a really good social chatty evening nevertheless.

We had a very nice young man called Liam come along to our group and give us a talk on birds of prey. He brought with him three birds, all of which he got out in turn to show us and talk about each and every one of them. The information he gave us was all very interesting and going back as far as Henry Vlll’s time.

The first bird to be introduced to us was a Hybrid Peregrine Falcon who perched perfectly on Liam’s arm whilst he told us all about her. The interesting thing was that in the wild she would probably only live around 4 years and but in captivity she will probably make 20. 2017-05-03 20.39.24

Next up was the beautiful Barn Owl, this was a lovely bird who didn’t sit quite so still for us but nevertheless was very well behaved. Again this bird was bred in captivity so was also going to have a lovely long life.2017-05-03 20.51.56

Lastly was a Kestrel, very squawky in the cage but even worse when out and on Liam’s arm. She too was bred in captivity but would possibly not live quite so long as the other two birds.

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Liam explained that he had recently started up this business with a friend and now had 11 birds in aviaries in the garden. He exercises the birds every day come rain or shine and in my view they are very lucky birds to have come into his care.

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During the evening we had the chance to view all the entries for the Best Picture of the Year  and so after plenty of chatting, a little eating and drinking Brian Coppard presented the yearly Clock Trophy to Christine Dobson for the picture ‘A Frayed Knot’. Brilliant picture, well done Christine.IMG_0395 1

For those of you who attended, we hope you enjoyed your evening and for those of you who didn’t come, you missed a really nice evening. We hope to see you all next time.

Report and photos courtesy of Cathy Newton

Rayleigh Art Group – ‘At Home’

Tomorrow, Wednesday 3rd May 2017 is our ‘At home’ night, don’t forget your painting for entry into the yearly ‘Painting of the Year’ competition. Liquid refreshment will be supplied but don’t forget to bring a guest and some food for the table.

This year we also have a guest speaker, won’t say what he will be speaking on but to give you a clue, flight might be involved and feathers might fly. See you tomorrow 7.30 pm at the Todman Centre, Castle Road, Rayleigh


We were told to bring any medium we fancied using together with an A3 size piece of paper, canvas etc.  So armed with all of this we all began to arrive at the hall in readiness of what exactly? We didn’t know…..20170427_114642

Brian had photocopied black and white prints of a man’s face and told us that we were to consider colour combinations and colour opposites and to, in the words of the ‘Frozen’ song, let it go!

Brian did a short demonstration using acrylic paints and dabbing colours not blending, he worked from the nose out and all the chatter began to stop and we were all deep in concentration from there on in.

It was a really fun evening, we worked in colours that I am sure probably non of us would have used and we all produced an image, possibly not quite like the photograph, but they were all really good and so very different from one another too.

Thank you Brian for another very interesting workshop.


Report and photos courtesy of Cathy Newton


Firstly we have to thank Jane for stepping up for us and doing this demonstration. The evening was originally booked to be a demonstration by Geoff Thorpe but unfortunately due to unforeseen circumstances, Geoff had to cancel at a late date.

We were very pleased to see Jane again, she is a very talented artist and always DSCF0780produces a brilliant picture. This evening was to be no different and with a piece of paper already taped to the board in a brownish colour, she commenced her pastel picture.

This evening we watched a leopard appear in no time at all using mainly Inscribe pastels, these are a cheap pastel but a good all rounder pastel to start with,

DSCF0782 Starting with a horizontal line to keep the eyes in the right place, Jane worked the eye shapes and the lines for the nose and then gradually worked into the head. Using quite bright colours to start with as she said you could always dull the colours down later but it would be more difficult to brighten the picture. She added a turquoise to the eye and a little highlight and suddenly the leopard came to life. Working into the fur in the direction the fur would grow and then adding spots firstly in a lighter shade and then darkening as she went on, now the leopard really was beginning to come alive.DSCF0787

After a short tea break and a few presentations to members of the Club, Roy Bull for Best Picture in Show and Colin Mossman and Stella Masters and a few announcements, Jane continued on. This time she added more black into the markings and eye surrounds and highlights to the fur. Lastly the whiskers went on in a very soft pastel of bright white but she then dulled them in places where shadow would take away the brightness.

DSCF0790A brilliant, very interesting and informative demonstration. Thank you Jane for standing in for us, we hope to see you again.




Report courtesy Cathy newton and photos Colin Mossman.

Brian Coppard Workshop–Experimenting with Colour

Brian Coppard is doing a tutored workshop for us on the Wednesday 26th April. The title of this workshop is ‘Experimenting with Colour’ and as always, will be very informative with a short demonstration before we commence our own pictures.

You can work in any medium you wish but you do need to bring all your own equipment. You will also need to bring along a piece of paper or board, canvas or any other surface you fancy working on but in A3 size as a minimum.

If you would like to join in this workshop then please either get in touch with Val Belverstone or Colin Mossman to book in. Places are limited so first come, first served.

Look forward to seeing you there.