How to become a Sussex Watercolour Society Member

History and Aims

The Sussex Watercolour Society (SWS) was formed in 1977 with the idea of creating a regional society of professional standing and of the same calibre as the London Art Societies. Its objectives as a forward-looking society were to maintain the highest possible standards in watercolour and water-based media and to hold at least one public exhibition a year.

This aspiration of attracting highly talented artists has not changed and the society continues to encourage new and experimental work within the range of water-based media as well as the more traditional styles. Members of the SWS also continue to exhibit at least once a year creating varied and interesting exhibitions in various venues across East and West Sussex.


Undoubtedly, watercolour painting has changed since 1977  but the elected membership is no less interesting. Among the current membership are artists who are also members of the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour and of the Royal West of England Academy. All of the members are professional artists working in various fields throughout East and West Sussex. Alongside gaining recognition for regional, national and international art awards, members of the SWS are also teaching, studying, designing or writing about art or using their talent to raise awareness for charitable campaigns. All the artists have exhibited either locally, nationally or internationally.


How to become a member of the SWS


We encourage talented artists who work in water based media to apply for membership. You don’t need to be a ‘pure watercolourist’ in order to apply, but you must be able to produce work that is of a high standard  using a water based medium.  Whereas traditional watercolourists with a high degree of competency are most welcome to apply, we especially value applicants that produce work that is innovative and experimental, showing new ways of expression in a water based medium.      


If you would like to become a member of the SWS, you will need to submit six finished works in watercolour or water-based media on paper, framed under glass or mounted, for consideration.  At least three of the works submitted should be professionally presented, ready for hanging at an exhibition. In addition you can submit your sketch books, your CV, books you have written, or any other material that you feel will support your application. 


Your work will need to be delivered and displayed in the morning before the AGM and then collected at the end of the meeting,  Our AGMs take place between 11am to 2pm. Therefore you will bring in your work and display it at 10.30am. You will have to collect your work shortly after 2 pm that day.  The venue of the AGM differs from year to year.  Please contact Krysia Drury ( for information.  

During the AGM, your work and the supporting material you have submitted will be assessed in a secret ballot by each of the members  present.  All votes cast are counted by the Secretary with the aid of two scrutineers.  Those applicants that have a majority of support will be invited to become a member.

Please note though, that the number of full members is limited to 30 and therefore only those applicants with the most votes will be offered membership in favour of those who receive fewer votes, if places are limited.  We will inform applicants within a few days after the meeting whether their application was successful or not. The decision will be final and no discussion will be entered into, or reasons given as to why an application was not successful.

Please note that members are expected to serve the Society by helping with exhibition promotion, serving on its committee or lending a hand when exhibitions are set up or dismantled. Experience in Publicity, PR, IT skills and exhibition organising as well as DIY skills are very much appreciated. We ask applicants to list their skills and experience which they are willing to offer to help run the society.

If you are thinking of applying to become a member please contact our membership secretary Krysia Drury for more information.


Krysia Drury,

178 Old Shoreham Road,


West Sussex  BN43 5TE.


Tel: 01273 463796  

Mob: 07866 919 965                          





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