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Wednesday, September 28, 2016



DATE:  Friday 14th October


LOCATION & TIME :    27 Bell Street Romsey SO51 8GY  

10.15 am  Meet inside Rum’s Eg Art & Craft Gallery with gift shop and café


10.30 We move outside at 10.30 to sketch in the vicinity - there is some shelter from the weather in the Dukes Mill area.  You will need to bring a seat  so that you can get the best position to sketch.


11.30  Refreshments and a chat in the Rums Eg café (which is on the first floor) 


PARKING:  Free parking for 4 hours at The Rapids car park - a 10 minute walk away.

There are charges for the nearby car parks, such as Newton Lane (off Middlebridge Street) and the Crossfield Hall opposite the Aldi car park.


So many came last time and it was a great morning!  I hope to see more this time - it’s well worth a visit to the fabulous Rums Eg art gallery as well as a relaxed session sketching.


For more details contact: Di Alexander Programme Co-ordinator Tel.07979905192.




Saturday, September 24, 2016

Our next meeting is on Wednesday 28th when Jonathan Newey will demonstrate "Expressionist Landscapes"
Entry forms for the Close-Up Competition should be given to Di at this meeting or sent to reach her by this date .See previous blog for all the details and the entry form.
October 1st is our Workshop Day with Ruth (watercolour) and Pat (card-making) - details on the web-site.
Anyone interested in Botanical Painting should visit the current exhibition at Hilliers.  Christina Hart-Davies is exhibiting the paintings she has done for her latest book "A Wild Plant Year" ( which is on sale during the exhibition) Christina is one of the foremost botanical painters in the country and her paintings are outstandingly beautiful.

Sunday, September 11, 2016


Despite the threat of rain (which never materialised) ten of us turned up with chairs and sketchbooks to record our favourite spot at the Lavender Farm.  With the beautiful colourful garden and the lavender scones to finish we spent a great couple of hours there. 

By the Tea Room

Di sketching the lavender.

The Lavender

Comparing notes

Pam sketching the barrow

The Barrow

Lavender scones

Sketching the flowers
Muriel s sketch

Thursday, September 1, 2016


The next outing to the Lavendar farm is on Friday 9th. September. Details of this and the CLOSE-UP COMPETITION are below.



This was the subject at the last demonstration evening. Caroline Rackham is a Totton Town Councillor and a Community Arts Officer working in the south-west Hampshire and east Dorset area. Her latest project was the New Forest Arts festival in June. Currently she is working on the Totton Lantern Procession.

Previously she worked at the Media Workshop in Southampton and it was at this time that Digital Art started as a major art form and became an important way of working in the Community Art field. Caroline showed us the different genres of Digital Art and the work of different artists before showing us how she had used it in community projects. In the second half she showed her own method of working on a subject. 

Firstly she dealt with using an ipad or computer.

Artists who work in this way are Liz Hall and David Hockney. The image can be drawn and "painted " with a stylus using an app (many free) on an ipad or program such as Paint which comes as part of the Windows operating system used in most computers. It can be accessed via "All Programs" and then "Windows Accessories" showing as a small square displaying a palette. Another program which can be used is Photoshop or its far cheaper version Elements which is just as versatile.

By painting a vase of flowers on a table using Paint, Caroline was able to show us how to use the airbrush tool (the longer the line is held the thicker it becomes) and the paint pot to obtain and change colour as well as the common tools. Very complicated pictures can be produced in this way.

She then went on to show us examples of Photographic manipulation. This type of work is popular with the Neo-Surrealist group of artists.  Photographs can be montaged, twisted, inverted, reversed etc. The best effects are produced using similar colours and tones.

Caroline then spoke of the place of Digital Art in Community Art as exemplified by projects she has done with various groups. A favourite with children is a diary project where each takes pictures over a weekend and they are then combined to produce one art work.  Other projects included responding to music or robots in a pond controlled by text messages! In all cases an image is produced digitally which can be combined with others or over written with prose.

The scanner is a very useful tool particularly so in making  murals. These can be seen  in such places as Romsey railway station, the entrance to the flats at Weston and in many schools and community buildings. Groups often work to a theme e.g. sari fabric, oral history and memories of a place and what it will be like in the future. Old photographs or paintings are often combined with new ones e.g. of a street or area. In the case of Romsey, children from all the schools were asked to imagine being on a train journey. Drawings, paintings and objects such as carpet tiles were all scanned, manipulated and turned into a mural of separate tiles which were then produced and put onto the station wall.

After the tea-break Caroline first showed us some of her own work which included a Welsh landscape, a dahlia and a passionflower. She then showed us how to produce a beautiful image based on a Crocosmia photograph. Firstly the background was removed and converted to plain white. The flower colour changed to blue and the flower copied and re-sized and added to the original. The whole was then refined using various tools and brushes until finally a shadow was formed by manipulating the brightness. The shadow was blurred using Gaussian Blur.

Digital art is without doubt a very creative art form allowing us to use the full extent of our imagination. It can be used to produce a unique work of art or as a basis for further work This was a fascinating evening and we much appreciate the time and effort Caroline put into it. One member suggested it should have been titled "Caroline's Magic Show"

After thanking everyone Caroline then announced that she was giving her fee for the evening to the Totton Lantern Procession funds and suggested that we as a group could have a lantern making session and even take part in it with our lanterns! Hopefully we will be able to do this and support the Procession.   
Vase of Flowers
Caroline at the computer