Important announcement by the International Watercolour Society

Shooqi Atrabi IWS England

We’re in discussions about forming an IWS British Isles, incorporating IWS Scotland, IWS Ireland, and IWS England. Details of the first meeting are on this poster to which all are invited. And if you can make the meeting or want more information, let me know. I’ll be contacting art clubs around the country and hopefully, we can be a significant presence in this international society which has over 80 member countries already. Please spread the word! This is for everyone with a passion for watercolour!

Invitation iws england2

If you are interested then please contact Joe Dowden, the first meeting is on the 18th February.

RAG Christmas Party 2019

Our Christmas party was a great success and very well attended, thank you to all who came.

David Williams gave us an excellent and extremely interesting talk on the greening of London, David is a historian who takes groups on history walks of London, details of his tours will be circulated to members as soon as received.

Reg White Award.

We had a record number of excellent entries for the competition the subject of which was ‘ English Landmarks’ Dave Mansfield’s painting of the London Corn Exchange, was a clear winner and received the award from our President – Brian Coppard.


Thank you to all who entered, the quality of which made it very difficult for members to vote for the best picture, so well done Dave, a well-deserved win.

Thank you to all who turned out on such a cold evening, we had a full house and with plenty of good food and wine made for a great atmosphere.

All that remains now is to wish you all a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! 




Graham Webber Demonstration November 13th 2019

Graham Webber was a new demonstrator to our group so we waited with bated breath to see how he tackled oil painting, our subject being seascape in Norfolk.
A good turn out of members came to watch this very interesting demonstration.

I think we were all surprised at just how young Graham seemed to be, not in our usual age range. With this younger personality came a brilliant sense of humour that we all enjoyed very much.



Graham explained that he painted outdoors on a much smaller board and then came back to the studio and enlarged the painting. With this in mind, he brought along a small maybe 10 x 8 or smaller pre-done painting and then a large MDF board that had been primed with gesso which had acrylic PVA and chalk powder mixed with it to give a texture. This is to hold the paint rather than the paint just slipping around the board.

Graham then told us the colours that he uses and then ran through the actual colours that he was going to use on his demo. He always uses Titanium white, 2 blues a warm and cool, Ultra Marine and Cerulean. 2 yellows Cadmium and Lemon yellow but tonight he was not using lemon yellow. Cadmium red and Alizarine but also sometimes Magenta, no Magenta this evening though. He explained that he uses Veridian Green as this mixed with red makes a really good grey and is a good talking point for onlookers. We all found that amusing as we all know what it is like having onlookers that you don’t necessarily want to paint in front of and need a good distraction. The last of his colours were Yellow Ochre and Burnt Sienna. As a thinner, he uses Zestit that apparently is harmless but does smell very nice, better for those of us that like the smell of these oils, thinners etc.

Graham uses hog brushes and said that they come in a largish brush but wear away and end up almost as twigs or almost hairless brushes.

With all this information now under our belts we watched as he very quickly made a drawing with darkish paint and then began to put in the sky colours. He started from the left side of the picture and gradually lifted the colours from greys to blues.

The whole of the demonstration he reiterated the fact that you should remix the colours that you use, this method keeps the picture interesting to the eye of the viewer. Graham did explain that he tried to get triangular shapes into the picture and also to have warm and cool shades of colour against one another again to add interest to the painting.


This was a brilliant demo, one of the best we have had. A really nice chap, very good sense of humour and really turned out a good painting. One to have back again I think.
Report by Cathy Newton
Pictures by Colin Mossman

Graham Webber Demonstration Wednesday, November 13th

This Coming Wednesday we have Graham Webber, a renowned Norfolk artist and a member of the Royal Institute of Oil Painters, coming to demonstrate for us a scene of the Norfolk Coast in oils.

The demonstration will be held at the Cedar Centre, Castle Road, Rayleigh, SS6 7QF. guests are very welcome at a small charge of £ 4, please arrive promptly at 7 pm for a 7.30 pm start.

To find out more about Graham click on the link to take you directly to his website,, I think we are going to be in for a very interesting and informative evening, I look forward to seeing you there.

Report by Colin Mossman



Heather Miller Demonstration Sept, 25th 2019

On Wednesday evening members enjoyed a lively and interesting demonstration by Heather Miller.  Heather brought along three of her delightful finished paintings of woodland scenes in an impressionistic style.  She works from photographs and sketches which she has made of her favourite subjects which are all based on nature and especially springtime scenes.

She works in acrylic paints on canvas and begins by priming her canvas with a coat of gesso followed by a layer of neutral coloured (light grey or beige) paint to “get rid of the white”.  She then does a rough sketch on this in chalk. She began by painting in what she called the “main players”, in this case, foreground trees, using a wide flat brush and overlaying Prussian blue, burnt umber and buff titanium so that they blend on the canvas. Explaining that she works from dark to light, she then started to put in the background again using Prussian blue, this time with various greens and lightened with buff titanium. She explained that her paintings are a pattern of lights and darks, creating the mood of the scene, not an exact copy.  This light/dark patterning continued into the foreground with the addition of more Prussian blue, permanent violet and buff titanium with touches of ultramarine and magenta.  Small marks were added with a rigger and a small round brush.


Heather explained that she would normally work for much longer on a painting but we thought that what she achieved in two hours was lovely and I think everyone learned a lot this evening.

Welcome to my site


Report by Vicki Coppard

Photos by Colin Mossman

Heather Miller Demonstration Wednesday25th September

This Wednesday coming we have another great demonstration to look forward to of a Bluebell Wood in acrylic by Heather Miller. The demonstration will take place at the Cedar Centre, Castle Road, Rayleigh, usual times, at 7.00 pm for a 7.30 pm start.

Inspired by a love of nature, Heather’s aim as an artist is to engage and intrigue the viewer and draw them into her work.  She mindfully explores colour and light in each painting, conscious of how these elements lift the spirit and encourage connection with the subject.

The seasons, water and changing light all provide rich influences on her art. Her paintings are an emotional response to what she sees rather than a facsimile encouraging the viewer to find something different each time they look.  She works chiefly in acrylics and acrylic inks which lend themselves to working quickly and expressively with a glorious array of colours.

Although Heather enjoyed art from a young age, she started to paint seriously when she moved to Abu Dhabi with her husband and young family.  The change of culture and scenery awakened her creative spirit and she knew she had to paint.  The journey continued when she moved back to the UK and she met her teacher and mentor Caroline Hulse, who challenged, inspired and encouraged her to take risks and grow as an artist.

As well as working as an artist Heather is keen to spread the word about the versatile medium of acrylics. She demonstrates her working process to art societies around the UK, through Art Profile and also teaches impressionism and abstract workshops regularly throughout the year at the Joe Daisy Studio in Reading.

She has previously exhibited paintings and life drawings at Contemporary Art Fairs, Art Shed, The JoeDaisy Studio, The Maynard Gallery, Gravelly Barn, Art Van Go and various art shows.  She studied at the Open College of Art and has had many wonderful teachers who have helped and inspired her along the way including the brilliant Caroline Hulse FRSA.  She has recently written for ‘On your Doorstep’ Magazine, issue 7, explaining her creative inspiration.

To see more of heather’s click on the link to take you to her website

Lastly a reminder that subscriptions are due this month, see you on Wednesday.


Sharon Hurst Demonstration 10.07.2019

We were promised an interesting evening and we weren’t disappointed. Sharon gave us an extremely informative and enjoyable demonstration of a young woman in watercolour. Sharon has a great sense of humour and kept us entertained with her unique way of explaining how she builds up paintings.

I won’t go into detail of her demonstration except to say that she used 140lb Bockingford Paper (Sharon’s favourite paper), together with Winsor Newton and Shin Han Watercolours. However, for those amongst you who would like to try her method, full details of her colours together with tutorials may be found on her website: Go to the bottom of her Home Page and click on the link to Tutorials and Videos. Sharon also has a Facebook page which is ‘Sharon Hurst Art’


From all of us Sharon, thank you for an excellent evening, one we won’t forget for a long time.

Text and photos by Colin Mossman