Watercolour Workshop with Kit Leese March 2019

Kit is a new tutor to our group and we had a very productive day with him.

Most of us worked from our own material while a few used some of Kit’s photos. He demonstrated throughout the day and walked around encouraging and helping where needed. He also showed us how he uses masking fluid and how to stretch paper. We even had time for a demo on creating an abstract painting.

It was a busy, constructive day, thoroughly enjoyable with some good practical and useful tips.

Here are our paintings including a few abstracts.

European Cities March 2019

We had a very good turn out for our Wednesday evening session. Here are our paintings, mostly of european cities with a few exceptions where members were working on their own choice of subject.

You may be able to spot some of the cities (don’t forget you can click on each individual painting for a closer look). Can you find Venice, Liverpool, Heidelberg, Copenhagen, Tallinn, Kotor amongst others?

Paintings finished at home

Here are two paintings from the session on texture that were started on Saturday and then finished at home.

Margaret W’s watercolour woodland picture uses texture to enhance the bark of the trees and the foliage in the foreground. It’s a beautiful painting, Margaret, well done!

Tracy Q-Ps acrylic painting uses the impasto technique of putting on thick layers of paint. This was done with a paintbrush and then the colourful paint on the ampersand was added with a palette knife.

Texture – February 2019

What an interesting session we enjoyed by incorporating texture into our paintings. It was good to see so many artists painting together as there were 33 members present.

Some continued their January ‘depth of field’ paintings and added texture to the foreground, by using an impasto technique with palette knives or texture medium.

Others started new paintings and used thick paint, paper, string, feathers, matchsticks, sand, netting, collage, shells, embroidery, tissue paper, pastels, beads and gravel to create texture. Some paintings remained flat, but the artists had applied paint or used pencil in a textural way for animal fur or foliage.

It was a successful day for all the artists, so why not use these techniques again in your next painting?

March & April 2019


Wednesday 13th    7-9pm    –  European cities

With Brexit nearly upon us, think of a visit you’ve made to a European city and paint a favourite view. If you haven’t travelled to Europe then paint a picture of a city you’d love to visit.  We’ll display our paintings at the end of the sessions and see if we can name all the cities.

Saturday 23rd     10am-3.30pm   –  Watercolour workshop with Kit Leese

A new artist to us, Kit will be running a watercolour workshop based on a landscape or garden view (final details nearer the time).  See Kit’s paintings on his website at www.kitleese.com

If you’d like to attend, check your diary first to see if you’re free.  If so, please email or phone Susan asap (her contact details were emailed to you last month) and she will add names to the workshop list in the order received.  If there are more than 25 names, then a waiting list will be used.

Do not use the comments box on the blog to ask for a place, as messages can take days to appear.

The fee for today will be £14, which includes Kit’s workshop and hall hire.


Wednesday 10th     7-9pm    –    Topiary

In formal gardens all year round, paint a picture of topiary in any medium.  Hall Place in Bexley has many topiary trees, including those called the Queen’s Beasts, planted in 1953 to celebrate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II…www.hallplace.org.uk.   The world’s oldest topiary is at Levens Hall in Cumbria…www.levenshall.co.uk, Hampton Court Palace has magnificent topiary…www.hrp.org.ukand Hever Castle has many examples too…www.hevercastle.co.uk.  Another interesting website is www.topiaryintheuk.co.uk.

You may have visited many more gardens with topiary, so bring any photos with you. 

Saturday 27th    10am-3.30pm   –  Spring Greens

Spring should be with us by now, so use today as practice for making greens in any medium. Try different yellows and blues, or use a favourite green paint and learn which colours lighten or darken the tones. Paint a spring landscape, a vase of daffodils, a tulip field full of greens and colours, an Easter scene, trees full of leaves and blossom etc.

The fee for today is £6.

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Miniatures February 2019

Apart from the small postage style paintings these are approximately 4 x6 inches so smaller than you are seeing them on your screen. Quite a challenge, especially for those of us who usually paint large and loose! A worthwhile exercise, if only, to show how difficult it is. The meeting was unusually quiet, a sign of intense concentration.


January & February 2019


Wednesday 9th    7-9pm  –   Fast and loose

Brush off the cobwebs and get drawing and painting in a relaxed but speedy style.  Any subject, but if you’re stumped for an idea look through your Christmas cards for any scenes or subjects you can tackle with a flourish.  Try out ideas in your sketchbook if you don’t want to commit anything to watercolour paper or canvas.  Also paying subs and having a natter!

Saturday 26th    10am-3.30pm   –   Depth of Field

Think about your composition before you start painting. Look at the foreground, main subject then the distance. Is the foreground too plain?  Can you add details, texture or vary colours to draw the viewer’s eye into your painting? Try painting a winter scene from a photo or a Christmas card, or if you’d rather be somewhere warmer, bring in a summer holiday photo to paint from.

The fee for today is £6.  No need to book.


Wednesday 13th   7-9pm  –   Miniatures 

Try painting on a smaller scale than you usually do to see if you can really pick out important details. Paint on a postcard, paper or a canvas no bigger than 4” x 6”.

Saturday 23rd    10am-3.30pm   –   Texture

Following on from last month, think again about your compositions.  Can you add texture to give your paintings more interest to the viewer?  

With acrylics or oils use modelling paste on your canvas, add sawdust or sand to your paint, or use a palette knife.  

With watercolours prepare your paper before the session by gluing on tissue paper, other watercolour paper or white material.  Make sure the glue you use will accept watercolour paint on top.  You can also use ‘watercolour ground’ directly on the paper.  

Alternatively, use today as a mixed media session with any textures you like.  In the past we have been amazed when people use flowers, material, patterned card, nail varnish, sand and even dead bees and spiders in their paintings.

The fee for today is £6.  No need to book.

Welcome to 2019

HAPPY NEW YEAR to everyone and THANK YOU for your continued support. 2018 was another good year for our group, the highlight being our Open Day in November, with lots of visitors, membership enquiries and several paintings sold.

In 2019 we’re having our Open Day on Saturday November 23rd and will be painting at Chalk Church in the summer.

Our blog continues at www.medwayandchalk.art where the newsletter is published every two months, together with anything relating to the group and with photos of the sessions. This also gives you the opportunity to have your work on show, so please continue to look at the blog and email Susan your paintings for inclusion.

Please become a ‘follower’, if you haven’t already done so, to ensure that you get email alerts every time something is posted on the site. You click on where is says ‘follow’ on the home page and put in your email address. Then go to your emails, find the one from WordPress and click on the link to confirm you want to ‘follow’ the blog.  If you don’t have an email address or internet access you can ask a family member to follow for you and they can also look on the blog as it is a public site.

This coming year all Wednesday evenings will be free, unless we have a guest artist or model. No bookings are required for Wednesday evenings and non-tutored Saturdays, but please book for all Saturday workshops.

We know Wednesday evening sessions aren’t as popular as the Saturday ones, but do please try to come along to support these sessions as they’re always good evenings.

Free coffee, tea and biscuits will be provided at all meetings.

The session ideas we suggest are to help you think of what to paint.  If you’re already working on something else, no problem at all, please come along anyway for a cuppa and a natter!

Membership for 2019

The annual membership fee of £15 is now due and should be paid by the end of January 2019.

A paying-in form is provided with this newsletter and cheques should be made payable to ‘M & C Art Group’.  Please send forms and cheques to Susan as soon as possible (an email has been sent with her contact details), or hand your form and your cash/cheque to her at the next meeting.

If you will be on holiday then please email or phone Susan, so she knows your membership fee will be paid on your return.

Year after year we have members who don’t reply to emails, letters or phone calls, but then still want to be members a few months later.

We feel we have to be stricter now and say that if your membership fee is not received by the end of January 2019 then you will no longer be a member.  If you wish to rejoin after that date then your name will be added to the waiting list and you can return when a place becomes available.

We do have a waiting list of several people who wish to join and be active members as soon as they can, so if you no longer wish to be a member then email or phone Susan asap, so your place can be offered to another person.


Workshop etiquette

On some Saturdays we have workshops with visiting artists.   We will continue the ‘first come, first served’ policy of putting your name down for a workshop. We feel this is the fairest way as everyone can see the newsletter on the blog at the same time. If you don’t follow the blog then you may miss out if you can’t see the newsletter when it’s first published.  Even if you receive a paper newsletter you can ask someone to check the blog for you regularly, before the newsletter is posted to you.

Many tutors only want to teach 15/20 people, but we always persuade them to accept more at our group. However, any more than 25 and we run out of tables and time for the tutor to speak to everyone is limited.

If we have more than 25 members wanting to attend, we will have a waiting list.

When you see a workshop you want to attend…

  • Check your diary. Only book if you’re free that day and not away or busy.
  • Email or phone Susan asking to attend the workshop. She will confirm your name is on the main list or waiting list.
  • Please don’t use the comments box on the blog to ask for a workshop place, as WordPress can take days to pass messages on.                                  
  • If you find you can’t attend please email or phone Susan as soon as you know, so your place can be offered to the next person on the waiting list


On the day of the workshop…

  • MOBILE PHONES – Please turn off or silence your mobile phone. Tutors mention to Tracy Q-P that it’s very annoying when mobile phones ring or make noises and it disturbs other artists too.
  • Please watch, listen and follow the tutor so you know what to do. Some people rush ahead and then sit waiting whilst the rest of us catch up.
  • Save your sarnies for lunchtime which is usually about 12.30pm. It’s easier if we all eat at the same time, instead of the tutor feeling he/she is disturbing your lunch to talk about your painting.

Have you got a new diary/calendar for 2019?  Write down the dates of our meetings in 2019 or print them out:- 

  2nd  Wednesday 4th  Saturday
January   9th 26th
February   13th 23rd
March   13th 23rd
April   10th 27th
May   8th 25th
June   12th 22nd
July   10th 27th – Chalk Church
August   14th 24th – Chalk Church
September   11th 28th
October   9th 26th
November   13th 23rd Open Day (Fri 22nd hanging evening)
December   11th – party

Saturday dates are for the 4th Saturday.  Some months have 5 Saturdays, but we meet on the fourth one.


Please complete this form and post to Susan with a cheque for £15.00 payable to ‘M & C Art Group’.  Alternatively hand in with cash or cheque at the next meeting.






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