Mighty Mouse by Elizabeth Randall

Members monthly update – October 2020

Dear members

I hope this newsletter finds you safe and well.  Again, we have lots of news to share this month including

  • Enter our October competitions now!
  • Members have their say – the outcome of your survey.
  • Annual General Meeting update
  • Discounted membership fees for members
  • Current Arty Ideas and Opportunities
  • Projects and activities for the months ahead

Welcome New Members

I’d like to start by welcoming new members who joined us for the year ahead.  Welcome to Karen Hammond, Vanessa Sarig, Minh Rishton, Fiona Tomlinson  Tony Bevel and Jackie Hillier. I hope you will enjoy being a member of our group and join in with our activities where you can.

Thank you to those members who have renewed already.  Our membership secretary, Jeni, will write to you individually to  confirm your renewal, as we are unable to print and hand out membership cards currently.

A call out to the  member who renewed on 16th September by making their payment at a bank.  Unfortunately you didn’t include your name on the bank transfer so if this is you please get in touch with our treasurerfarehamartgroup@gmail.com to let her know who you are.

It’s time to enter the Jenny Jennings and Diamond Trophy competition now

We’re still holding our autumn competitions with the winners to be announced at the beginning of November.  The competition title is Still Life and your work can be in any medium. The deadline for entries is 25th October 2020.

We aren’t awarding trophies currently due to the virus restrictions but winners will receive their certificates and vouchers.  Current trophy holders please either retain your trophy until called for, or return it to your nearest committee member.

**Look out for details of the winter competition which will be shared in November.

How to submit your competition entry: 

Take a photo of your entry and email it to farehamartgroupinfo@gmail.com.  Please remember to include:

  • your name
  • membership number
  • the title of your painting and      
  • the medium.

SURVEY OUTCOME

A big thank you to all the members who took the time to complete our survey sharing  their views  This has been an extremely challenging time for the committee, and your words of support and encouragement are very much appreciated.

This has been particularly insightful and helpful under the current situation where some club activities have been curtailed in order to comply with the Government’s guidelines. Your replies have helped the committee to draw together contingency plans for our group for the coming months. 

From what you have told us, we have concluded the following:

Returning to indoor events.

Members are not ready to attend indoor events and activities in person.  Most are only likely to return when the risk  of transmission is low.  A third of members responding have indicated that they are likely to return in 2022.  Twenty percent of respondents are not likely to return until they have had the vaccine.

The group will not hold any activities which contravene the governments guidelines.  We recognise that some members are elderly/vulnerable, and want to assure you that the safety of our members is paramount.

The committee have concluded that the club is unlikely to be able to run any indoor events until the new year and will focus our activities on outdoor events, or competitions and events that members can take part in from the safety of their own homes.

Outdoor Events

We’ve come to the end of our summer painting days.  They proved so popular we extended them into September, but now that the weather is turning colder it isn’t practical to continue.  Our survey showed that members enjoyed these events and we will look to hold more events next year in the Spring/Summer time.

Accessing club activities using the internet

We were encouraged by the responses to our proposals for individual and group activities  which we plan to showcase on our website.  We now know that a large number of our members can now access/view the internet, but understand that some find communicating or participating in this way difficult.

We are continuing to run our normal competitions and appraisals, and showing the work on our website.  We are awarding prizes and certificates, but can only do this if our members are able to take a photograph of their work and send this to us by email.

For those who said they would like to join into a group project we are taking this idea forward this autumn. 

Online demonstrations

Three quarters of members responding to the survey would like their monthly demonstrations streamed online under the current restrictions.  The committee is looking into how this can be facilitated, but would welcome any help from members with experience in this area

Ideas

Thank you to those members who put forward ideas.  We now need some members to volunteer to take these forward please.

  1. Would come to demos, if numbers are sensible in the hall or in a larger space like a larger hall. The hall at St Johns church is larger than Trinity church hall for instance. (Thank you for this suggestion – hiring a larger room wouldn’t be viable without a large increase in weekly fee due to the current numbers who would return)
  2. My only suggestion would be to see if people who are geographically close e.g. same/next street, could be put in contact with each other to form a semi-independent art support group, under the auspices of FAG? (This is a good idea, and we’d be happy to put members in touch if we could have a volunteer to take this idea forward)
  3. Any small group socially distanced activity, personal contact is important (We completely agree.  We extended our summer painting days for a month – if any member would like to run a safe and socially distanced event we’d be pleased to promote it to members)
  4. perhaps members giving a definite yes if they are going to attend a meeting etc so that you are aware of numbers (Good idea, and when we return to meeting up we’ll be implementing this if numbers are still restricted)
  5. Prefer pre-recorded demonstrations which can be viewed at any time, but willing to try live (Zoom via tablet) if no clashes. (Thank you, we’re investigating this)

To ensure that only members have access to this page I have put a password onto the page When the box comes up asking for your password enter the password sent to you by email.

AGM UPDATE

The committee has discussed the practicalities of holding our Annual General Meeting at the end of October.  We have concluded that due to the restrictions imposed under the current situation it would be impractical.  We have agreed to postpone the AGM, but instead will be circulating our AGM papers, and inviting questions from members shortly.

All questions should be addressed to farehamartgroupchairman@gmail.com.  We will respond to all questions and will hold our AGM when the Government’s restrictions around meeting up are lifted sufficiently to make the meeting possible.

2021 Membership Renewal due now

Membership of the current year expired on 30 September 2020, but due to current circumstances we are giving existing members until 31 October to renew this year.

In normal times your annual membership fee to Fareham Art Group covers most of the cost of:

  • the Thursday Artist demos and competitions
  • the website and news updates
  • membership of the SAA including insurance
  • general admin costs of running the club e.g printing, postage, stationary, publicity, competition prizes etc. 

In order to keep the fee affordable we have, in recent years, subsidised the fee slightly from our reserves.

The other activities we run such as the weekly painting sessions, extended workshops, Xmas party, exhibition, trips etc, are self funding as members pay for these if they attend.

This year has been exceptional as we have had to cancel some of the demos planned due to lockdown. To compensate we have greatly improved the website to keep members up to date with news and to offer competitions and projects to keep members busy. Moving forward, we are exploring other ways to deliver activities to members whilst observing the social distancing restrictions , and to keep the club going.  We are  looking forward to better times in the future such as our new look exhibition in October 2021.

Therefore, we have decided to offer a reduced renewal fee of £10 for existing members who renew by 31st October 2020. The club has a healthy reserve which can be drawn upon to cover the shortfall of income over costs this year.

Membership renewal is due NOW.  

Renewal is as in previous years:

  • pay online quoting your existing membership number/and surname
  • pay by cheque to registered address

If your circumstances have changed e.g address / phone no/ email- please advise the Membership Secretary by email:  farehamartgroupmembership@gmail.com

The Membership Secretary will confirm receipt and membership numbers upon receipt of your payment.

Summer Outdoor Painting Days

Our thanks to Tina Shaw for an outstanding programme of Summer painting days.  It was lovely to see so many members join in.

I hope you’ve had a chance to visit En Plein Air Gallery photos on our website:  www.farehamartgroup.co.uk/en-plein-air-2020-gallery/

Arty ideas and opportunities shared by our Publicity Secretary’s 

Carole Jarman, our Publicity Secretary has been busy looking for local arty opportunities and we’ll be sharing these with you each month.

Free open art competition

Being mindful that we had to postpone our annual competition Carole has found the Hampshire Cultural Trust Open Art Competition.  Entry is free to exhibit two pieces of your artwork which will be displayed at Fareham Ashcroft centre between November and December. If sold the trust will take 20% commission.

The entry deadline date is 2nd November.  You can read more about the competition and how to enter here:  www.cultureoncall.com/arts-open-exhibition/

Jamie Boots free online Meerkat Tutorials

We’ve enjoyed both demonstrations and a couple of tutored workshops from Jamie in previous years.  Many of you will know him from local wildlife art exhibitions, where he’s always happy to chat about his work and answer questions.

He’s contacted us to share his new You Tube Channel, and has uploaded some free graphite tutorials there on ‘How to Draw a Meerkat. The tutorials are in parts – Jamie says there is likely to be 3 or 4 parts by the end of the project.  Check out Jamie Boots Channel Introduction for a flavour of what’s in store – his work is beautiful!

I hope we’ll see Jamie back in person one day.

Projects and Activities for the Months ahead

Members will understand that due to the virus we have to make adjustments to how we meet and the activities we do.  Your responses to the questionnaire will determine what we do.

  • Your committee is currently looking into how we can continue to provide artist demonstrations 
  • Holding our meeting in a safe and different way
  • Running more virtual painting competitions and appraisals
  • A new group project for members coming soon 
  • Online themed piece of work (weekly or fortnightly)

The committee is doing their utmost to adapt and ensure that your art club continues through this difficult period please help us to thrive by joining in wherever you can.  

And finally…

We pride ourselves on being a friendly and helpful group.  We do our best to keep in touch with all members, but we know that some of our members don’t have access to the internet, so if you know anyone who isn’t able to receive our electronic newsletters please share this with them.  We will be posting out to these members occasionally, but not not being online can be isolating.

Perhaps you might offer to help them to participate in the competition  by taking a photo of their competition entry and sending it in on their behalf.  We’re all experiencing these extraordinary times, for some it can be quite lonely, or difficult to communicate.  Your help could make all the difference.

Enjoy your painting!