My title

 Welcome to our News Page

Articles from the society relating to art events and news, past and present...


 Latests News From the SSA Committee Regarding Current Events

 Updated 17-03-2020

In view of the rapidly developing advice from the government regarding the Coronavirus (Covid-19) the Sidmouth Society of Artists Committee have now taken the decision to cancel ALL our group meetings, exhibition change-overs and demonstrations with immediate effect.

We are faced with unprecedented times and as a result we will continue monitor the situation over the coming weeks and of course we will keep you updated & informed. If you are aware of any members who are not online can you please let them know.

On the positive side ... There are a number of wonderful artists that have started to offer free online painting tutorials of which is Glyn Macey. Head over to '' & use the code 'FREE-TUTORIAL' at the check out - you can choose one of his wonderful 70 tutorials for free!) ....if you know of any others please do share and lets embrace our love of art

If you have any further questions then do please contact us, but in the meantime stay safe, look after yourselves and keep painting.

Warm Wishes

SSA Committee 




Updated 12-03-2020

The SSA have a few up and coming events over the next few weeks... in light of the environmental issues surrounding us at present these events maybe subject to cancellation.... we are keeping a close eye on the developments and will continue to monitor health advice issued by the government and health officials so please keep checking with us before you come along.

If the events do proceed we are introducing a few simple and sensible steps to keep each and everyone of us as safe as we possibly can...

Therefore... we ask anyone who is feeling unwell to please stay at home. This is for your own well being and that of all your fellow members. Equally, if you have recently returned from a high risk country or have been in contact with anyone suspected of having the virus please do not come along.

Here's a wee summary of things to look forward to if all continues as planned, just incase you missed the SSA notices...

All Events Now Cancelled - Until Further Notice

*Thursday 26th March - 2pm -4pm - SSA demo at Kennaway House Cellar bar - A talk with Ray Balkwill 'A Rivers Voice' (guests welcome)

*Thursday 26th March - from 2pm - The hand-in of 'Sids Big Paint' - can all artists that are taking part see Cherry in the demo break to sign in their artwork.

*Thursday 2nd April - 10.30 - 11am - Members Changeover Day of paintings for the residential 'Art at the Theatre' in the Manor Pavilions, Sidmouth

See the SSA facebook page for more details

Thanks SSA committee




Sid's Big Paint Gathering pace...

The launch of 'Sid's Big Paint' is well underway with 32 different artists from around the South West of Devon area, all working away painting a section of this wonderful photograph captured by the very talented Terry Ife (staff photographer Sidmouth Herald) on Sidmouth Air Day 2019.

Each artist is painting their section in their own unique style, all the 32 pieces will be reassembled by the 'Sids Big Paint Team' to make a beautiful mosaic of this bustling scene, celebrating individuality, diversity and the vibrant artistic community spirit within area.

The finished Mosaic will be unveiled at the Preview evening of the 'SSA Festival of Arts Annual Exhibition' on July 3rd at Kennaway House, Sidmouth. Its gonna be one exciting evening!






The New Year kicks off with Alison C Board Demo


A massive thank you to Alison C Board for a wonderfully instructive demonstration full of ideas, inspiration and product advice. It was a great turn out and lovely to see so many faces, old and new, for the January start of our 2020 program.

Ali's relaxed and friendly manner really set the tone for the afternoon. She definitely inspired many members to reach out their comfort zones and try something exciting, experimental and new. Ali can be found on Social Media where she runs a 'Technique Tuesday', giving beginners and artists alike a little snippet of something new that they could perhaps take away and incorporate into their own work.








 The Autumn Term continues with...

John Bailey  -  Cotswold Village Scene


Watercolour artist John Bailey came to the Sidmouth Society of Artists to give a demonstration at Kennaway House in October and what a delightful afternoon .

John’s demonstration was of a Cotswold village scene. He began his demonstration by recommending the importance of doing a sketch first. He completed a quick tonal sketch in charcoal, showing the contrast between light and dark. He emphasised “think about colour, composition and contrast”.

He began his water colour painting using his sketch as a guide. After his first wash had dried he drew the outline in paint and using a limited number of watercolour paints he painted wet in wet.

John told us to allow the paint to mix itself on the paper, rather than mixing on the palette.

The finished painting showed a loose watercolour style done by an enthusiastic artist with a very entertaining manner.

Enjoyed by all...




John's Cotswold Village Scene


Congratulations John

Great write up in the Sidmouth Herald


Click on the image and head over to our facebook page for more info.




## Exciting News ##

Sids Big Paint

Sidmouth Society of Artists are launching an exciting community art project starting in January 2020 called 'Sid's Big Paint'. It will run in conjunction with 'The Sidmouth Herald’ and we need more of you lovely artists to sign up and get involved.

So what are we doing? ..... well ....We have a wonderful busy image taken by Terry Ife (one of The Herald’s staff photographers) on Sidmouth Air day earlier this year and we will be using that as reference to create a super large community piece of mosaic art to celebrate uniting in diversity and individuality.

The idea is that the photograph will be gridded (split) into 32 sections and each section will be painted by an artist (or artists). Your line work for your section will be available for you to collect from the January SSA demo (Thurs 23rd Jan) until 1st feb. You then get 2 months to paint it in WHAT EVER STYLE & MEDIUM you wish

It would be great if you could bring your painting along to the April SSA demo (Thursday 23th) ... or hand in before May. Your artworks will be pieced together to create a large mosaic painting (of about 2m) which will be unveiled at the SSA annual exhibition 2020. The finished painting will also be used by the Society for a later event in August called ‘Art in the Park’ which takes place at Connaught gardens.The Sidmouth Herald will be publicising the event and running a story on the project.

It would be great to hear from you if you would like to get involved ... for further details contact Cherry at

and for further up dates check us out on Facebook...






The Autumn Term starts fantastically with...

David Clarke  -  Hartland Seascape in Acrylics


It was so nice to see some many familar faces back at the SSA demo for the autumn term after wonderful but super busy summer break. The demo was taken by a lovely local artist called David Clark who described his style as 'Realist Impressionist'. He started the evening by talking about his background and his love for Paul Cezanne, all things acrylic, nylon brushes and Hartland Quay.

David mostly favours flat brushes and a limited pallete to create his wonderful brushmarks and is often seen using the edge of an old piece of card as a ruler for long straight edges.

His favoured colours are ..
Prussian Blue
Aliz Crimson
Lemon Yellow
Cad Yellow
Yellow Ochre

He works quickly and is a firm believer that you should use the largest brush possible for the job and always match your brush size to your canvas. Its was great watching his seascape develop during the demo ... a massive thanks David for coming and sharing the evening with us 

Please head over to our facebook page for more info.







The SSA 'Art in the Park' Summer Event a Great Success


A wonderful time was had by all at this years 'Art in the Park' open air event in Connaught Gardens ... sunshine, smiles, paintings and music made for a fabulous and productive day. A massive thank you to Rebecca & Terry for all their hard work and planning behind the scenes to ensure the day was a roaring success.

Please head over to our facebook page for more info.


 The Sidmouth Fiddler enjoying the music and happy atmosphere in the sunshine





 The SSA 'Festival Of Art' Summer Exhibition is Well Under Way


The SSA 'Festival of Art' Summer Exhibition at Kennaway House, Sidmouth got well under way last night with a well attended and super interesting preview evening. The lovely Mat Culmer was invited to judge this years Marion Ovens Award and a fabulous Giclee print of 'Arthur' (one of last years winners) was raffled for charity ...

This years winner and recommendations were ..

Winner -
Lindisfarne - Judy Ritz

Highly Commended -
Enchanted Forest - Maureen Sherman
Moon Stairs - Caron Stephens

Congratulations to all ... goodness knows how you pick from so many fabulous paintings!!!!

The exhibition is now open daily, head on down and have a look around.

for more pics head over to 'Sidmouth Society of Artists' facebook page...


Lynda Kettle (Chair of SSA) with this years Marion Ovens Award winner Judy Ritz 





Sidmouth Society of Artists member Cherry Ferris
Pre Selected for SWA Annual Exhibition

Congratulations to Cherry Ferris, one of our SSA members who has gone forward to the receiving day for the Society of Women Artists 158th annual exhibition in London, which will be officially opened by HRH Princess Michael of Kent. Her submission, entitled 'Service Please' is a mixed media piece using Pyrography & Gold Leaf on Birchwood finished with resin.
Congratulations Cherry, we all have our fingers and toes crossed. 




 'Service Please' - Pyrography & Gold Leaf with Mixed Media





Sonia Bacchus Demonstration

 'Still Life in the Style of the Old Masters'

A wonderful evening was spent with the very talented and super lovely Sonia Bacchus as she treated members to a demonstration of her unique take on painting a still life in the style of the masters. Sonia set up a collection of items of different heights, colours and textures on some muted fabrics and began with a brief sketch to explore the patterns, shapes and shadows. She used both Acrylics and Oils to paint her wonderful image. A big thank you is sent to you from all of us at SSA… we had a really inspiring night and thank you for coming so far to visit us!!!

If you would like to read more about the demo and some of Sonias top tips head over to 'Sidmouth Society of Artists' facebook page



Sonia's Painting at the end of the evening



Art in the Theatre Changeover

A fabulous turn out at 'Art in the Theatre'... wow!! Thanks to all of you that brought a painting along ... it was wonderful to catch up and see your work ... and what an amazing array of styles, colours and subjects we have!!! Terrific!!! The in-house exhibition will remain in the Sidmouth Manor Pavilion during the months of June, July and August ... there are more photos of some of the wonderful works of art on display over on the 'Sidmouth Society of Artists' FB page (apologies if yours isn't there as my phone was sulking!!) ....

Do pop down and have a browse if you are passing or taking in a show.






SSA Festival of Art - Summer Exhibition

Roll up! Roll up! for the highly anticipated Sidmouth Society of Artists 'Festival of Art' Summer exhibition held at Kennaway House, Sidmouth. Come along and see what enthrals us and gives wings to our imagination as local artists display their latest creations for you to browse and perhaps buy.

We offer a wonderful and varied display of artwork covering a multitude of styles, vistas, subjects and mediums. This year we will be continuing to host both 2D and 3D work, including sculptures etc. There will be a charity raffle and you will be able to choose your favourite painting for the 'Public Choice' award.

Doors open to the public from 10am -4.30pm (including Sundays) and its just £1 admission (under 18's are free) ... It would be great to see you there ...

Lets colour up the town! 






Colin Brown Demonstration

A wonderful evening was spent with the very talented Colin Brown as he whisked members away to the streets of London with his unusual topsy-turvy style, bright colours and large flat brushes. Colin favours acrylic colours straight from the tubes with no premixing … instead he loads the pigment straight to the bristles using two or three colours at time and applying them directly to the canvas.

Colin enjoys using Divinci Impasto and liquitex brushes with Liquitex paints, starting with the largest brush possible to keep the painting loose and interesting. He starts by applying a bright 'ground' colour to the whole of the canvas (which is often a turquoise/teal colour) and then superimposes a detailed technical drawing over the top using a small brush ensuring the angles and perspective of his street scene and vehicles are correct. Any corrections or important lines are highlighted in red paint. These lines add to the vibrancy of the painting. Once the outlines are correct the canvas is turned upside down and he begins by blocking in tones with the darkest elements first, allowing the background to randomly peek through. Turning the painting upside down allows Colin to concentrate on tone and form by painting shapes rather than objects. Once the background is completed the painting is reverted back to normal and more order is restored by painting with decreasing brush sizes…

Here's some of Colins top tips …
Load your paint along the bristles of the brush – no premixing
Use as big a brush as possible
Paint only bold lines – as more lines are layered on top order and depth is achieved (even circles can be achieved with straight lines)
Dont wash your brush out too much – mixing on the brush occurs naturally and it allows similar colours to move around the painting
Highlights and smaller lines can be achieved by using a metal rule and round brush… use the brush as a pen/pencil
Always check tone rather than colour
When painting black – dip in other colours such as orange to keep the black interesting

A big thank you to Colin Brown from all of us at SSA… we had a very interesting and inspiring evening and your direct dynamic approach has definitely created a lot of discussion within the group.



 Colins favoured brushes and paints.




 Half way through the evening.




 Restoring order in amongst the lines.



Using a steel rule and paintbrush as a pen. 




 Painting at the end of the demo.




Finished painting one and half days later. 






Sidmouth Society of Artists member Sue Williams to exhibit in

Royal Academy Summer Exhibition


A massive congratulations to Sue Williams .... one of our lovely SSA members .... she has been accepted to exhibit in the 'Royal Academy's Summer Exhibition' for the second year running!! Her submission this year was a wonderful vibrant acrylic painting of a ferry .... Here's what she has to say about it ...

'I was lucky enough to exhibit there last year and didn't expect to be chosen again for this year!!This year's painting is called Razzle Dazzle Snowdrop. The subject is a ferry used on the Mersey that was covered in bright geometric designs as part of Liverpools Year of Culture. I painted it in acrylic on canvas'. I was thrilled!!!!

I paint in water colour, oil and acrylic but prefer acrylic. I paint all subjects but not fond of portraits. My favourite subject is marine life especially working boats rather than leisure boats.
Last year my entry was of a boat abandoned on the Conwy coast that had been covered in graffiti. Being part of the Summer Exhibition is great fun. Artists attend a varnishing day, a buyers day as well as the usual private views'

.... we all wish you well for the exhibition Sue xxx


 Razzle Dazzle Snowdrop - Acrylic on Canvas by Sue Williams


Art Month
Art through June at Powderham Castle

A wonderful and innovative artist called Anna Fitzgerald has been working alongside Powderham Castle and they have created a fabulous concept called 'Art Month' all through the month of June.

Artists and creative people are invited to access to Powderham Castle free of charge to paint/sculpt/draw and create in the grounds using a artists 3 day pass from 10am-5pm (not including saturdays). Further you are invited to exhibit and sell your work in a private viewing on the evening of 28th June.

To gain your pass ... or to find out more information email

Lets make this an art event to remember...





Art in the Gardens, Windsor Gardens, Seaton

An exciting new art event is taking place in Seaton this summer. Local artists are taking part in 'Art in the Gardens' starting from May 25th when Windsor Gardens will be open for the public from 10am - 3pm to view all the wonderful, affordable artwork on show. Admission is free... so what are you waiting for?




Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Exeter (RAMM)

Summer Exhibition

Congratulations to Exmouth Art Group who have gone forward to exhibit at this years summer RAMM exhibition. The group will have their work displayed in 'Gallery 22' from June 11th to June 30th 2019. Some members involved in the exhibition are members of both Exmouth and the 'SSA' so do come along and support them.

Here are a few of our members work which will be included in the event.

Congratulations to all...


 The Golden Goose - Pyrography with Gold Leaf and Mixed Media by Cherry Ferris


 The Great Wildebeest Migration - Watercolour by Tracey Rapson



The Calling - by Debbie Coles



 The Crossing - Oil by Francetta Bridle



 Fly Away Home - Watercolour with Gold Leaf & Mixed Media by Cherry Ferris





Exciting Local Exhibition

There is an exciting local exhibition taking place at the East Devon Art Academy showcasing a unique and eclectic mix of original art works. Some of the artworks are created by members of the Sidmouth Society of Artists. The exhibition takes place from 25th May - 2nd June and is open from 10am - 5pm each day. All sales support charity so come along and bag yourself a bargain...





 Must Go Down to the Seas Again...


Congratulations to our super talented chair, Lynda Kettle, who has had her painting featured in the 'East Devon Resident'. Mervin Jackman, owner of Jackman Fabric Care and assistant pastor at his local church chose Lynda's 'The Rolling Wave' as his favourite work of art. See the article below for the full write up...

Well Done Lynda...




Dee Cowell - Managing Fur and Feather


March demonstration - Thursday 28th March 2019










A massive thank you to the fabulous Dee Cowell for her demonstration at Kennaway house.

The demo started by splashing vivid yellows, reds and rose pink watercolours onto a canvas (yup you heard it ...A canvas!) which was prepared with acrylic modelling paste. Then she set it aside to dry whilst she entertained the group with wonderful tales and an owl eye & lions fur demonstration using Inktense pencils and black paper from the 'Derwent Black Book'. Later she started a porpoise painting by analysing a pre-prepared blue loose canvas background for shapes hidden in the paint ... (a bit like cloud gazing) ... which she then teased out with painting both negative and positive shapes allowing the creatures to develop organically.

After the break Dee did a similar thing with the fiery oranges and red canvas which she had painted at the start of the demo. With this one she teased out hummingbird shapes and flowers such a fabulous, fun and fluid way to paint ☺️

Here's a few of Dees tips:
Be bold ...we're artists ... bring yourself to a painting and put your colours on'
Use the sides of Inktense pencil leads to get more depth and coverage ...and if your layers get slippery and you can’t add more, add a little white acrylic, allow it to dry then add inktense on top
Map the darker colours and patterns of fur/feathers/ texture first ...underpin your work with a good drawing ....then set yourself free.
Derwent sword brush is a wonderful brush for expressive sweeps of colour and delicate lines.



 SSA Member Published on Front Page of

'Paint' Magazine.


Congratulations to Society Member, Cherry Ferris, for grabbing the Front Page and having a double page write up in this months SAA Magazine. Cherry's painting of a charging elephant called 'Tusker', which is a pyrography underpainting on a Poplar Wood Panel overlaid with Gold Leaf and Oil Paint was the perfect choice for the SAA's front cover for their March/April 2019 nature issue.

Great News from Cherry and great publicity for the Sidmouth Society of Artists.

See the full write up below:









Don't forget that the South West Art Shop and Gallery, in Old Fore Street, offer a discount on Art Supplies purchase from them if you are a member of the Sidmouth Society of Artists. Just ask them for a loyalty card. Link to their website below:

South West Art