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August SASA Plein Air Outing

We’re planning a plein air outing to Keurboom Park Rondebosch on Monday the 15th of August. A lovely location to sit and sketch. For more details, see the latest SASA newsletter and if you’d like to be added to the whatsapp group, please email Sonja Frenz –

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Plein Air at the Arboretum

The scheduled SASA plein air outing for July was to have been at the Clock Tower at the Waterfront, but unfortunately this had to be cancelled, due to rainy weather. This is Winter in Cape Town – it’s supposed to rain – but we’ve had lovely sunny days in between, so we’ve been lucky to get as much plein air painting in as we have done.








For the past couple of weeks our group has been taking advantage of those sunny/non rainy days and meeting up with others at the Boschenheuvel Arboretum, just below Kirstenbosch, for some painting and sketching.











This beautiful piece of land, with its old shady trees, lush green grass and glorious assortment of early Spring flowers will, very sadly, soon give way to housing developments, so we need to enjoy and absorb it all while we still have the chance.








Our plein air painters have certainly been doing this and producing some wonderful work along the way.







Thank you to the organisers. If you’d like to join the plein air outings, please email Sonja Frenz – – and she’ll add you to the whatsapp group.


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2022 SASA Selection Weekend

On the 6th and 7th of August we held our annual selection weekend at our usual venue, Rustenburg Girls High School. It was wonderful to see how many of our new members entered their work and also offered their help – neither of which we can do without!

The weather was kind to us, lovely and sunny, if a little chilly and the whole intake process – apart from a couple of minor mishaps – went very well indeed. We had far fewer entries than we are used to, so it all got done rather quickly and we were able to leave by lunchtime on Saturday.

On Sunday we met our three judges, Ashley Ogilvy, Anthony De Klerk and Paul Birchall – all artists in their own right – and they did a superb job of giving scores to all the work presented to them.








At the end of the day, after much deliberation, the judges selected the prize winners from the highest scoring pieces and allocated the awards. Well done to all the winners!

The overall winners in the eight categories were:







Best Oil – Robyn Schoon, “Passing Through”;                         Best Acrylic – Sonja Frenz “For My Love of Daisies”;







Best Watercolour – Veronica Reid, “An Empty Nest”;                                               Best Pastel – Val Watt,”Tuxedo Cat”;






Best Mixed Media – Lyn Northam, “Moody May”;  Best Drawing – Elizabeth Janse Van Rensberg, “Morning After 1”;








Best Sculpture – Boniface Chikwenhere, “Kingfisher Giant”;    Best Print Media, Cliff Davies, “Abstract Flora 1A”.    

Our secretary will be sending out the complete list of award winners by email, or they can be seen in the August SASA Newsletter.








Huge “Thank You”s – to our judges for giving up their Sunday for us; to our very hard-working council, for organising the event so efficiently; to the members who so willingly volunteered their help and to our catering team for keeping us fed and refreshed throughout the whole process. We are very grateful to all of you – we cannot do it without your help.

(Please forgive the quality of some of the pics – conditions are seriously challenging for photography in the hall!)


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Landscape, Life and Still-Life Competition

At the SASA members’ meeting on Thursday the 28th of July, the main event was the Landscape, Life and Still-Life competition, which always takes place at this time of year, when our members have been enjoying the workshops, life-drawing studio and, when the weather was kind, even plein air painting mornings.








There were some beautiful pieces to admire and vote for. The seating arrangements were casual and comfortable, as opposed to straight lines, so we could all move around with ease, while voting, listening to the critique, or just enjoying a cup of tea and a chat.






Well done to our three “critics” – Karen Burns, Laura Wenman and Penny Steynor – they did an excellent job. Their comments were succinct and very useful. In fact our members so enjoyed their feedback, that some went back for more at the end of the evening.

Thanks to our wonderful sponsors, we had great prizes for the winners in each category – Canvases donated by “Artland” and vouchers from “Brush and Canvas”. We also had eight “spot-prizes” to give away, which was a treat. All members present were in for a chance as the names were “pulled out of a hat” after tea. These prizes were donated by “Creative Arts Atelier”, “ETH Canvas” and hampers containing a paintbrush holder, paintbrush cleaner and paint spreader from “Brush and Canvas”.









The winners in the three categories were: 

Landscape – 1st, Beth Lowe’s “Clouds Cape”; 2nd, Lynne Menge’s “Cape of Storms” and 3rd, Johanneke Strydom’s”Lonely Bluegum”.










Life – 1st Grazyna Janik’s “Daydreaming”; 2nd Penny Steynor’s “Sebastian” and 3rd Beth Lowe’s “Ibis Island”.










Still Life – 1st Johanneke Strydom’s “Olives”, 2nd Penny Steynor’s “Abundance” and 3rd “Beth Lowe’s “The Treat”.









Well done to all our prize-winners, especially to Beth Lowe, who earned a place in the top three for all categories!









Thanks, as always, to our council members, for all their hard work, organising and putting it all together…..not least, Avril, for providing the very welcome tea and snacks.




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Charcoal Workshop With Sonja Frenz

We met at the Peter Clarke Art Centre in Claremont on Saturday morning, 23 July in a studio that was very bright and sunny, despite the chill in the air outside. We were a comfortable group of ten ladies and we had a lovely time, both instructive and sociable, as Sonja showed us the way she “builds” a charcoal drawing.








We had a whole lot of different charcoals to work with, from the very soft, natural willow sticks, to hard and dark compressed charcoal, as well as charcoal powder and black pan pastel. We also had a few different kinds of erasers, including very soft putty rubbers, paper blending stumps and hard vinyl and electric erasers, which were also used for drawing and mark making, rather than getting rid of mistakes.










Sonja stressed the importance of paper quality, as the beauty of the medium lies in its many layers, added and removed, using all the tools at our disposal.

She had us all practice on scrappy paper, so we could play a little and find out exactly how each tool behaved and reacted with each new mark or layer, before we got to the good stuff. We all left itching to go home and experiment some more.







Thank you Sonja, for a very enlightening and satisfyingly messy finish to our 2022 winter workshop series! Thanks as well to Irene and Avril for making it all happen.

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Charcoal Workshop With Sonja Frenz

The last of this year’s Winter Workshops will be held on Saturday 23 July from 9:30 – 3:30 at the Peter Clarke Art Centre. Sonja Frenz will be sharing her wonderful skills with charcoal and graphite. See the latest SASA newsletter for details. If you’ve yet to book, but would still like to attend, please email Nicole –

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June SASA Monthly Members’ Meeting

We had our members’ meeting for the month of June on Thursday the 30th at the Athenaeum. Our “theme” for the evening was a “Three Artist Paint-out” and it made for marvelous viewing. Lyn Northam, Beth Lowe and Sue Paulsen each set up and painted a still-life, from scratch, in their own distinctive style.

It was quite a challenge for our three artists, having to deal with the strange lighting set-up due to load-shedding, as well as fielding questions from members and having people scrutinising their every brush-stroke. Nevertheless, they all rose to the occasion, kept calm and took us with them from start to finish.










We were shown how each artist has their own approach to painting a still life, each having their own preferences regarding composition and colour range. Each told us about their palette, paint and mediums, their different choices in products and brushes, as well as their wonderfully efficient easel set-ups, with everything they need tucked inside them….including space for wet paints and paintings!






Thanks to our very well organised Avril, we were able to wander in and out with cups of tea and coffee, or a platefull of snacks, while we watched the paintings progress…..and thanks to Philip Green for all the lighting, allowing us to see where we were going and what was going on!







Thank you Beth, Lyn and Sue, for giving us your time and sharing your skills. It was a lovely evening.



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SASA Life-Drawing Studio 2022

Saturday 18 June was the fifth and final official SASA life-drawing session for this season……Although our artists have enjoyed it so much, many of them will be joining exciting little groups that meet regularly, so they can carry on with it. Wonderful!









Our model for this session was Jessie, whom we all know well…..mind you she looks a little different from the last time we met, with her short, vividly coloured hair!







Jess is so relaxed and totally happy in her body, that we get offered really lovely, natural looking poses, that are great to draw. We also get the more difficult ones, which challenge our eyes with foreshortening and unusual angles.








Once again, our artists have used exciting styles and techniques, each personally unique, which makes for very interesting viewing.





Thanks to Sonja and Avril for all the organising you do to set this up for us…..and thanks to all our “drawers” – see you next year.

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SASA Winter Life-Drawing 2022

On Saturday 11 June we had the fourth in the current season of life-drawing sessions in the Duminy Hall. Modeling for us on the day was the very accomplished Sinead, whose beautiful shapes and colours make her an absolute pleasure to draw.










We stuck to our usual routine of short poses, followed by longer ones, with a break for tea and leg-stretching. Short poses are good for capturing the gesture and “getting your eye in”, while the longer ones give us time us to study the details, lines and planes of our model.

Another most enjoyable morning. Thanks to Sinead, as well as our organisers, Avril and Sonja.

Next week will be the last for this season. If anyone still wishes to join us, please get in touch with Nicole, the SASA secretary – – and she’ll give you all the details.