Les Williams PSGFA – President

Les’s former colleagues at Lloyd’s of London associate him more with a suit and tie than with paints and brushes. But having resisted the urge to don a suit anymore, he still loves to feature the ever-changing landscape of the City in his artwork.

Les trained with the Royal Drawing School and with some of the leading watercolourists around the UK. At the moment he loves working in the medium of pen and wash. Les exhibits regularly, and most recently has participated in exhibitions at the Barbican, Bankside Gallery, Southwark Cathedral and with the SGFA at the Menier Gallery in London. He takes part every year in Norfolk Open Studios, and together with other artists has formed an art trail in his village. Les was elected President of the Society in February 2019.

Harriet Brigdale VPSGFA – Vice President

Harriet is an artist, printmaker and teacher.

Drawing is the basis of all of her work. Her parents and a grandmother were all artists, so as a child she was surrounded by paper and pencils, and drew every day.

Harriet studied typography for three years at the London College of Printing. She was also taught printmaking by Peter Baer at Chelsea College of Art, and its beautiful qualities and surprising outcomes play a large part in her work.

Teaching for Harriet is a wonderful, exciting and informative part of her life. She learns about art and its methods with every teaching class: “It’s tiring but amazing!”

Dr Susan Poole UKCPS, VPSGFA – Vice President

Susan has a mixed art and academic background. She gained an MA in Fine Art from Surrey Institute of Art and Design, but spent some years away from practice to research Aegean Art and Archaeology, for which she was awarded an MA (Dist) and her PhD from University College London.

Susan retains an ongoing fascination with animals as subjects, and has travelled extensively to make first hand studies of wildlife. In 2022 her book, Drawn to Animals, an artist’s encounters was published, which includes examples of her watercolours, etchings, wood engravings and coloured pencil work. She also makes drawings, watercolours and egg tempera paintings of objects found in her environment that embody particular personal meanings, layers of which might be uncovered like archaeological strata.

Susan was elected a member of the SGFA in 2013 and joined the Council the same year. She was made Hon Secretary in 2015 and Vice President in 2019. She has exhibited widely in national and international exhibitions including the RA summer exhibition and many group exhibitions held at the Mall Galleries, the Bankside Gallery and Westminster Gallery. She has won a number of awards over the years, including Best in Show at the SGFA Annual Open Exhibition in 2014, and the CPS award at the Coloured Pencil Society Open Exhibition 2022.

Lynda Clark VPSGFA – Hon. Secretary

Since leaving school Lynda has been drawing continuously, starting her artistic career on the drawing board within the advertising industry, progressing to senior visualiser for a major international cosmetics company. She then freelanced as a visualiser, graphic designer and photographic stylist.

During this time Lynda concentrated on watercolour painting, qualifying in 1996 as a tutor in adult education. She now divides her time between teaching drawing and watercolour painting whilst furthering her fine art practice, based on figurative study and innovative techniques.

Vincent Matthews VPSGFA

Drawing is an important part of Vincent’s life: he was born deaf, and drew before he could speak. Vincent studied at Maidstone College of Art and Croydon College of Art & Design in the late 1970s, pursuing a foundation course followed by studies in interior design (interior architecture). He went on to work in the design studio of Chester Jones Ltd, then for many years he worked for Sibyl Colefax and John Fowler Ltd as a senior designer and associate director, producing bespoke designs by hand on the drawing board in the old-fashioned way.

Vincent rediscovered his passion for fine art in 2003 and pursued a contemporary fine art course at CityLit for two years while working as lead consultant on a major design project. For Vincent the art course was life changing. His studies completed, Vincent left his job to practise art professionally while working part time as a self-employed designer. When a former tutor introduced Vincent to etching during short courses at Camberwell Art College in 2007, he became hooked.

Vincent likes to work from his sketchbooks and from life whenever possible, interpreting what he sees with marks and line. He is inspired by the landscape around Rye, where he lives, and it often features in his finished pictures. Vincent was elected a member of the Society in 2012, and a member of the SGFA Council in 2016.

Stuart Stanley SGFA

Having left the theatre in 1986, Stuart took up his first love of painting and drawing and also worked as an events designer. Projects have included major productions in Versailles, at The Ritz Hotel in London, the Opera Comique in Paris and the Hoffburg Palace in Vienna. Stuart has held many solo and group exhibitions throughout England, as well as two solo exhibitions in Italy. In 1999 he opened The Studio Art House gallery in Leatherhead with his wife Sue, specialising in modern British and contemporary art.

A love of drawing and sketching in pencil and charcoal, a strong understanding of artistic practice, and a love of the history of art are the foundations upon which Stuart creates his paintings. He works mainly in oil and acrylic, the influence of his theatre background clearly evident in his dramatic paintings full of light, colour, energy and atmosphere. In 2011 Stuart was awarded the prestigious title Baines Surrey Artist of the Year. His work is held in many private and corporate collections in Great Britain and abroad. Stuart was elected to the SGFA Council in 2015.