A happy crowd gathered at the Kings Court Masonic Centre on Saturday 21st for a New Year’s Lunch.
I believe this was a first for the group, and it was well received. Feedback on the venue, food and arrangements has been very good.
Starting with a welcome drink, we gathered and chatted, and inspected the seating plan. Alex Phillips confessed it had been quite a close thing to fit nearly forty of us into this venue, but in the end we had a little room to spare. There is a larger option, with a dance floor, but most of us felt this was a nice room, private and cosy, if a little on the loud side.
The food was very nice, and lots of it (served on quite small plates!). Opinions differ over whether Yorkshire pudding should only be served with beef, or whether it goes with anything. Cue anecdotes of fathers who had jam in theirs for ‘afters’, of Glastonbury queues for Yorkshire pudding with chips and gravy inside, and many more…
All in all, members were left asking for more… dinners, not to eat today. The puddings made sure we were well filled when we left!
Thank you to Alex and everyone involved in the arrangements.
We had fifty-five members arrive for the Festivities on Thursday night, with very nearly that number of entries for our competition with the theme of ‘Snow’, ‘Winter’ or ‘Christmas’. The Church and adjoining rooms had been beautifully decorated by Church staff, and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, including several new members who braved the cold evening to come and join in the fun.
Animated conversation, coffee and mince pies were the order of the evening, with lots of decision making to ensure three votes were placed for their favourite paintings. Thanks are sincerely due to the wonderful ladies who manned the coffee and tea hatch for the evening – very much appreciated. The corridor looked wonderful with so many bright and beautiful works of art adorning both sides.
Janet and Bev nobly stepped in to do the ‘counting’, and eventually decisions were reached … the winners were Christine Marlow, Gill Evatt and Barbara Unsworth. The applause was long and loud! Well done to everyone who submitted a painting.
The committee wish all members a very splendid Christmas and Happy New Year.
A second planning meeting took place in May, and notes have been sent to all who have shown an interest.
A reminder: we are participating in Hampshire Open Studios with our own ‘studio’ set-up at the Dovetail Centre, from 20th to 28th August.
The idea is that each participant creates their own mini-studio, and does whatever they want with it (within reason). A chance to show your work, the way you work, demonstrate your technique, and talk to visitors about your work!
Places still available
Due to some cancellations, and to the extra days at the hall, we have spare tables on several dates. Please contact Alex Phillips as soon as you can if you would like to take another date, another table, or maybe your first step into the studio!
It was one of those days at Sir Harold Hillier Gardens when you hope the weather forecast is accurate, having planned a day without a brolly! Large grey clouds trundled across the horizon at regular intervals, but the sun triumphed and provided us with lovely warm spells, just enough to keep the coat off and not shiver. Artists were hidden in crevasses throughout the gardens, and cameras were out in force. Well done to all who ‘got on with it’ and produced a sketchpad or paints. It takes some confidence to paint ‘au plein air’, but once settled it is such a lovely way to spend a few hours.
Our first social event of the year on 23rd March included an Arty Bring and Buy, with donated items raising over £500 for the Southampton Hospital Trust.
We very sadly lost Sheila Lockyer, our Exhibition Manager, in December. She died very suddenly and will be greatly missed. Her husband gave us a quantity of her studio contents, with which we created a ‘Spring Bring and Buy’ table. We also invited members to bring along unwanted art items, books, etc. for inclusion in the sale.
Many items exchanged hands almost as soon as they touched the table! There is clearly an appetite for other people’s overstock among group members.
People also enjoyed the opportunity to have tea or coffee – and chocolate biscuits – and just get to know each other more, especially after the long wait since our last social event.