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Monday, January 15, 2018

Next meeting JANUARY 24TH

The next meeting will be on January 24th when we will have a selection of videos to watch will questions and discussions. See website for more details.
There may be one or two places left on the Abstract Workshop on February 3rd with Betty Rackham and Anne will be taking bookings at the meeting.  Again more details on the website.



Nine of us gathered  to sketch in the City Art Gallery in January. Helen, Jean and June sketched a sculpture, David sketched the architecture, Muriel sketched items in a display cabinet and Elaine, Pam, Di and Pat found paintings to sketch. We all enjoyed being in the familiar artistic environment. You might like to visit their Four Seasons Exhibition of the work of local artists on display in the Gallery  from 3rd February until 21st April. Afterwards we enjoyed a well-earned break for refreshments in the Sea City Museum.

Monday, January 1, 2018


The next Totton Art Society Adventurous Artists sketching trip will be at:
the Southampton City Art Gallery, Civic Centre, SO14 7LY on Friday 12th January at 10.15 a.m. There is a multi-storey car park in West Park Road (near the railway station). We will meet in the art gallery.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Report from the N.F. Wildlife Park


The  Adventurous Artists  had a fabulous bright and sunny morning at the New Forest Wildlife Park on Friday morning. It was cold - so Helen, Elaine, Ali and Di did only the quickest of sketches. (Helen persevered the longest.) However we had lots of photo opportunities because the mammals were active.  Some of the easiest close-up photos to take were of harvest mice and otters . A long lens would have been useful for the wild boar and wolves.
After hot drinks in the large café, the four once again braved the cold to see the keeper attempt to feed Munchkin the lynx.  However she must have killed and eaten a small animal because she merely sniffed at it. Jean and June prudently stayed in the large café to sketch in the warm. The gift shop had an excellent display of artwork by our talented August guest artist Joanna Rose Tidey. The December trip had been truly memorable.
Di Alexander

Thursday, November 30, 2017



The Adventurous Artists will meet at 10.15 a.m. on Friday 8th December in the car park of the New Forest Wildlife Park Deerleap Lane near Ashurst SO40 4UH (site of the former Butterfly Farm at Longdown).   If the weather is good some of us may enter the park and sketch  (Adults £11.50 and Seniors £10.25) or sketch outside the park. Otherwise there is shelter in a large café with picnic benches Contact Di if you need more info.Tel. 07979905192  Email:


Helen's Art Journey paintings

The Art Journey table had three very different works by Helen Bartlett and there were eleven entries for the Rainbow Competition. Members voted for many entries. The winning artist was Di Alexander with her Rainbow Trout which she had created using acrylic inks over white gouache on dark grey mount-board. The Competition Entry fees will be donated to the Rainbow Project in Southampton which assists young people to gain employment.
Collage of the Competition paintings
Di with her winning painting


Tuesday, November 28, 2017


Wildlife artist Kim Thompson loves walking with a sketchbook. Her outings inspire her to create her artwork including fabulously detailed, colourful wildlife paintings, in acrylics or oils, which are exhibited and sold far and wide.
Kim works on drawings until she is happy with the composition. Then she transfers it to her board (such as illustration board or gessoed MDF) or canvas. She is meticulous in keeping her work clean and tidy, continually checking the accuracy.
The demonstration in acrylics was a portrait of a barn own on mount-board which Kim was copying from another that she had previously painted. She does not favour a stay-wet palette, preferring to work with small quantities of paint. Although she works in layers, Procolour and Chromacolour are favourite brands with a matt finish and higher pigment content than Winsor & Newton or Daler Rowney acrylics, which are too transparent for her purpose. When painting subsequent layers, she leaves small sections of underpainting to suggest layers of feathers. Kim began painting the dark eye of the owl with a No. 1 Series 7 sable brush using tiny strokes and worked outwards, moving the brush in the direction of the feathers in the concave eye area. A No.6 brush was used to paint the gold feathers on the head. Wriggly strokes in a darker colour emphasised the broken edge around the feathered disk around the eye. Pale blue shadows and cream reflected colour areas were scrubbed on with a worn brush. Feather textures were suggested with a small brush between the blue and cream areas. Brushes have to be kept clean in order to achieve the purity of colour which is a feature of her work.
Kim looks for pattern and texture.  Areas of the second layer was created with flicking movements and cross-hatching. Softer feathers remained untreated. Cerulean blue, black and white for light grey feathers over the gold body was, in turn, overpainted with darker grey feathers and subtle spotted patterns, avoiding applying the paint too thickly.  A cerulean blue and white gouache glaze was applied at the highlight in the eye.
After the break Kim showed slides featuring her illustrations in books and advertisements and her adventurous trips to Botswana, Zambia, the Himalayas and even a remote Scottish island for its birdlife. She sketches and paints in gouache on location as much as possible because it can provide more detailed information than a photograph. In conclusion she urged us all to draw as much as possible.
Di Alexander