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We’re Live at Kirstenbosch!

Our end of year SASA Members’ exhibition was hung in the Richard Crowie Hall on Monday 30 November. After all the hustle and bustle of getting all the work in – in a socially distanced queuing system – getting all the paperwork done and admin sorted, we could start putting the exhibition together. Luckily for us it was a beautiful day, so we didn’t have weather to contend with along with everything else!

We had a small, but willing band of helpers, to whom we are very grateful, and created a beautiful show – such a lovely, positive note to round off this strange year. Also strange not to have our usual festive opening party in the evening, but we just have to get used to doing things differently and finding new ways until we can get back to some semblance of “normal”.

Thank you to all involved, for making this exhibition happen and special thanks to Avril for the most delicious muffins, which kept us all going till the lunch break.

We had 255 pictures to hang and 161 portfolio pieces, which will be on display until Wednesday 9 December, so go and have a look and tell your friends – good timing for Christmas gifts.

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Plein Air Outing to Chart Farm

Chart Farm in Newlands is one of our favourite plein air venues and we gathered there again this last Monday, the 16th of November. The weather was lovely and the roses were spectacular.

 

 

 

 

 

Some of us found a shady spot and painted the pretty cottage visible over the tops of the rose bushes, while others got up close to the gorgeous roses and yet others concentrated on the beautiful mountain vistas around us.

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was quite busy for a Monday morning, so the cafe was bustling at lunch time, but we were able to have a well-spaced coffee and catch-up after painting and sketching all morning. We had a wonderful time out in the fresh air, surrounded by so much loveliness and the heady scent of hundreds of roses in full bloom.

 

 

 

 

Thanks Sonja Frenz, for yet another very happy plein air outing. If anyone else would like to join the group, please email Sonja on sonjafrenz@gmail.com

 

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October Zoom Meeting With Yvonne Ankerman

 

 

 

 

 

On Thursday the 30th of October we held our SASA members’ meeting via Zoom again, with Yvonne Ankerman as our special guest for the evening, speaking about the use of sketchbooks and her travels to exotic lands.

As Yvonne said, you can sketch anywhere, anytime. Anything around the house, or garden may become the subject for a page or two and these little drawings, or paintings don’t have to be perfect – they’re just for you. The more you do it, the better you’ll get.

 

 

 

 

 

Yvonne is never without her “sketching pouch” – which she unpacked for us. It goes everywhere with her, whether when traveling to far-off places, or just going for a walk. Her pouch contains a small journal, or zig-zag watercolour pad, a watercolour palette, a bottle of water, a variety of different pens and pencils, a selection of brushes – even a toothbrush for a splattering effect – in fact any sort of tool one might need.

 

 

 

 

 

There are no set rules when you’re sketching. You may want to use a pencil or ink pen first and then fill in the colour, or go straight into watercolour, without the lines. You can even add a little white with gouache, or black lines with ink afterwards.

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can work wet into wet and create lovely runs of colour, or work wet on dry, for more precise capturing of your subject. This can become a piece in itself, or reference for another in the studio. Smaller sketches can also serve as gift tags, or birthday cards.

Yvonne finds that she remembers a place or experience way better having done a sketch of it, than she does from a mere photograph and often also writes a few words to go with her sketches. She urged us to get into the habit of carrying sketch-book and tools with us, so we can take advantage of any opportunity that may come our way to commit a scene to paper memory.

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you, Yvonne for a delightfully inspiring demo and to all involved in facilitating the evening.

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Don’t Miss the SASA October Zoom Meeting With Yvonne Ankerman!

Tomorrow – Thursday 29 October – we’ll be holding our monthly members’ meeting via Zoom, once more. Yvonne Ankerman – travel sketcher/nature artist/urban sketcher/expedition artist in residence – will be doing a “Watercolour and Sketchbook demo”. Yvonne will show us how she captures those wonderful travel moments. For more info please see your latest SASA newsletter.

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Plein Air Outing to Greenpoint Urban Park

We had perfect weather for our outing to Greenpoint Urban Park last Wednesday, the 21st of October. It was a cool, but sunny, windless day. The park is such a peaceful place to sit and sketch, like a little oasis in the middle of the city.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There were so many birds about, including masses of waterfowl, providing wonderful background music to add to the ambience, making us forget that there was traffic just a couple of hundred metres away.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The blooming waterlilies and their many-hued leaves made very interesting combinations and juxtapositions of colour to paint, making us rethink our preconceived ideas of what lily-pads should look like!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There wasn’t a huge amount of shade to sit in, but that didn’t bother us – we brought our own, in the form  of  “Versa-Brellas”, very useful equipment for plein air painting, as they clip onto your easel, or chair, providing shade wherever you need it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you Sonja, for yet another lovely plein air outing. If anyone would like to join future outings, please email Sonja Frenz and she’ll add you to the whatsapp group. sonjafrenz@gmail.com

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September SASA Members’ Meeting

Our members’ meeting for September, held on Thursday the 24th, was once again held via Zoom and hosted by our president, Audrey Innes. Our October meeting will also be online, but we are hoping to have a “garden party” at the Athenaeum for the last meeting of the year, at the end of November. It will be good to see everyone again in person, so watch your newsletter for details and updates.

Back to September’s meeting! Our guest for the evening was our lovely Helen Van Stolk, who spoke to us about elevating our – and our viewers’ – spirit through our art. Her key-word for this talk, as well as for her own recent work, was “connection”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

She let us see how our work transforms when we really feel connected to it – feeling valued; seen and heard without judging or being judged. She likened her new process to a journey, not meticulously planned and mapped out, but rather just going where the road takes us and seeing what happens.

Helen urged us to seek inspiration everywhere – it can come from nature, music ,words, magazines, even pieces of coloured fabrics or paper. As we were told through a video clip of David Bowie – you should never work for other people. Something inside made you want to paint in the first place, so that’s where it needs to come from, but be brave – wade a little out of your depth!

To feed our art with freshness and imagination, we need to experience new things – things that make us feel inspired and invigorated. Helen proposed taking ourselves on “artist dates” and spoiling ourselves with “self-care” to energise ourselves, as whatever we’re feeling when we’re painting is what the viewer will feel when looking at a piece

……and presentation matters! It is essential to value your work, and paying attention to all five of the senses will allow you and your viewer to fully connect and experience it as a “beautiful encounter”.

 

 

 

 

Thank you Helen, for a peep into your studio and yourself – and for an exciting and truly inspiring evening.