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Our Members

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Katharine Gordon Amadeus

Contact Katharine

Katharine is a self-taught artist, ceramicist and teacher. Her pottery and paintings are expressive, colourful and playful.

Creating the right atmosphere in which to work is essential and her studio in the Surrey Hills is testament to this.

She cites influences ranging from music, nature, poetry and theatre - especially devised.

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Karen Ashton

Contact Karen

Working in a variety of media, Karen creates unique images in an expressive and vibrant style that is infused with her passion for colour, texture, pattern and rhythm. Her paintings are mainly acrylics and inks, with a strong emphasis on drawing. She also enjoys experimenting with freehand machine-embroidery and textile art. 

This exhibition focuses on her love of the natural world and the challenges of capturing movement and energy.

Over the years Karen has created sculptures and ceramics, painted on both porcelain and silk, collaged, printed and crafted enthusiastically. Aside from the Surrey Contemporaries group, she has exhibited with Surrey Artists’ Open Studios, AppArt and the Guildford and Cranleigh Art Societies.  See more on her Instagram page.

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Cecilia Barandiaran-Sprot


We are all so sad to report that our beautiful and talented friend, Cecilia, passed away unexpectedly on 22nd May 2022.  She is hugely missed by all who knew her.

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Grace Beckett

Contact Grace

On leaving school I had a place  at Corsham Court in Somerset.  Instead I went to Westfield College, University of London and achieved a Combined honours BA  in History and History of Art.


While a student I went to Camden Art Centre and did evening and holiday courses.  I damaged my hand skiing so I found it easier to draw with wax which is I why I took to batik and had several exhibitions and a stall at the Chelsea Craft Fair in 1986.  I was at West Ashling Mill in West Sussex running a small business.


By this time I had done a foundation course at the Sir John Cass Art School and also a PGCE at University of Nottingham in teaching Art at secondary level. I have taught in a comprehensive and also at Braziers Adult College.


My painting style in acrylics is expressive and impressionistic.

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Lizzie Crawford

Contact Lizzie

From the age of seven I was always creating things with my hands, be it making my own clothes, crochet accessories from left over balls of wool, sculptures out of old wire or making necklaces out of melon seeds!  My dream was to be a fashion designer and after getting married and moving to the USA I adopted the ‘CanDo’ attitude to following my dreams.   Hard work and determination took me to producing my own fashion label and an exciting career as a fashion designer in the ‘80s and being nominated for the prestigious ‘Designer of the Year Award’ in 1982! 


I am now enjoying experimenting with paint and creating art with mixed media always looking for new ways of mark making and pulling inspiration from my beautiful surroundings in leafy Surrey! I am currently enjoying pursuing fluid art which creates organic images relating to movement of water or the surrounding landscapes.  My studio is surrounded by inspiration deep in the heart of the Surrey countryside and my beautiful woodland garden.

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Nigel Denison

Contact Nigel

Nigel uses mixed media, but primarily acrylic paint, in his work.


Some pictures are drawn from his imagination, but most of his landscapes originate from photographs that he has taken in specific places. He uses the photographic prints to create a collage, wherein the original landscape becomes fractured, with the colour being the main unifying factor. The resultant collage will then provide a basis for the painting that he creates.

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Nicky Ford

Contact Nicky

Nicky took up painting when she erroneously threw away all her diaries she had kept since the age of 10.   Unnaturally desperate to leave some sort of record of her existence on this planet she took up painting.   After a not very satisfactory beginning with another teacher Nicky stumbled across Kim O`Neil who has opened up wide vistas of artistic opportunity.   Nicky had never before tried acrylic or oils and loves oils in particular.   The paint takes ages to dry to she can keep going back to try and make the picture better.   Surrey Contemporaries has also allowed Nicky to hang her pictures on the wall, which was another (fun) experience.   Nicky derives inspiration from everybody and everything including her fellow exhibitors but seems to keep coming back to portraits.

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Zhu Guo

Contact Zhu

The artwork of Zhu Guo is uncomplicated and is the simple manifestation of what she sees. This honest approach is what makes her works appeal and why so many find it refreshing and enjoyable!


She is a person who genuinely loves the joy life and so many of her works focus on a glimpse of a beautiful landscape or an intense segment of natural architecture easily overlooked in a broader view. Her other love is still life where she seeks to capture the essence of that moment when we have that feeling of peace and joy.

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Claire Jones

Contact Claire

Claire is an artist and maker who uses paint, papers, fabric, felt, stitch, wire and found objects to create collage, paintings and textile images. She has always loved painting, particularly abstracts, inspired by artists such as Kurt Schwitters, Georgia O’Keeffe and Howard Hodgkin. More recently she has discovered a fascination for working with textiles, often combining textiles with paint to create collages. 
The inspiration for her work is drawn from her travels, from the surrounding landscapes and from her early training as a geologist. Her style is textural and colourful. 
Claire has exhibited at Denbies of Dorking, Ramster’s bi-annual textile art exhibition, Cranleigh Arts Centre, Haslemere Museum, Farnham Pottery, Whitchurch Silk Mill and at App Art’s annual exhibition in Godalming. She has a City & Guilds Certificate in Machine Embroidery and a City & Guilds Diploma in Design and Stitched Textiles. 

Visit her website: or her Instagram page to see more of her work.

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Kaz Jones

Contact Kaz

Kaz returned to painting after a gap of about 35 years during which she was pursuing other interests such as teaching Undergraduate archaeology; photography and making jewellery. She is now thoroughly immersing herself in all aspects of mark-making, including working in pastels, pencil, oils and is currently experimenting with linocutting, printmaking and wood engraving, but her first love is acrylics in which she specialises in photorealistic still life representations of dramatically-lit fruit and vegetables. Current works for sale can be seen at her Artfinder account  A gallery of all works produced can be found at

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Katharine Mann

Contact Katharine

I’m a self-taught figurative and portrait artist painting expressive paintings of animals, people and places. I started Toobs Art in September of lockdown, 2020.

I’m a colourist who loves to create vivid and vibrant works. I believe that ‘Life is colour’ and love to produce art that showcases the brightest view of my subject.

I work in oils and acrylics mainly, whilst I’m developing my watercolour techniques.

I love gestural and large brushstrokes and often use palette knives to create sharp and more abstracts marks.

I launched my new website earlier this year where you can see all of my collections and prices.

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Karen Mason

Contact Karen

Karen rediscovered her love for painting in 2012 after a 28 year actuarial career.  With the advice and encouragement of Kim O’Neil she learned to explore the flexibility of acrylics to find exciting new ways of creating images and this is now her favourite medium.   She is inspired by people, places, moods and objects that she knows well and that evoke a personal response.  She enjoys experimenting with styles and techniques to find the best way of capturing her subjects.

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Julie Matthews

Contact Julie

Working mainly in acrylics, Julie’s love of both colour and nature has a strong influence on her paintings. She particularly enjoys bringing animals and birds to life on canvas.  Although she does paint a few landscapes, her main love is painting multi-coloured animals, particularly emus, llamas, zebras and highland cows, which are all very popular.  She regularly exhibits with AppArt at their Easter Exhibition at Prior's Field School in Godalming and the Denbies Wine Estate in Dorking with various groups.  Julie also takes part in Surrey Artists Open Studios in June as part of the North Farnham Art Trail and has been nominated as a Finalist in the 2023 Surrey Artist of the Year award.  For further information, and to see more of her paintings, please visit her website: or you can follow her on Instagram or Facebook.

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Steven Mochrie

Contact Steven

Taking up art in 2009 using oils and recently moving on to acrylics.  His earlier work was more traditional however feels a new freedom with contemporary art. Experimentation in all types of mediums and styles make his work varied with something new being tried in each project. He likes to build up a painting and later remove some of the paint in areas to give the work various depths to the end result. As well as mixed media Steven will mix paint techniques using paint brush, pallet knife, J cloth and air brushing within his composition. He doesn’t see himself with a particular style of painting as every piece brings something different to the forefront. Steven hopes to develop his techniques in the future as well as being open to new ideas.

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Rachel Pollard

Contact Rachel

Rachel has always enjoyed art and gained an A’level in sculpture whilst at school.


She then trained to teach physical education and this along with marriage and raising a family kept her busy for many years. However, in the last five or six years Rachel has taken up painting, a skill which was relatively new to her, but she has loved the challenge. She draws inspiration from people and nature likes to create abstract and figurative work, mostly in acrylics.


In recent years Rachel has returned to her love of sculpture working in clay and casting in cold cast bronze.


Mary Rodriguez

Contact Mary

Mary is a Londoner, who now lives in Godalming.  She has also lived in Venezuela and Spain, where she worked at the British Embassy, before marrying and having 2 daughters.


After retiring she continued with her interest in photography.  Her photographs have appeared in books, magazines, cards and calendars, but she now prefers to devote her time to painting in acrylics.


She is influenced by nature and enjoys painting flowers, landscapes, animals and seascapes, but she also enjoys experimenting with different contemporary styles.  She likes the flexibility of acrylics and often uses various types of mediums in her work. 


David Sprot

Contact David

David started painting shortly before retirement at the suggestion of his then partner Cecilia, since which time they married, moved to Fleet and painting has become a major part of their lives.


David paints in acrylic, watercolour and oil and his subjects are mainly portraiture, landscapes, flowers and still life rather than abstract or modern subjects. His work tends to be bold, bright and precise, (perhaps revealing his accounting background), and his intention in the coming year is to move to a more spontaneous style - time will tell!


You can see more of his work at

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Lynne Thomas

Contact Lynne

Lynne has always loved being creative whether drawing, painting, photography or writing poetry.  Since childhood she has been keen to draw animals and this has developed into a passion for nature and wildlife.  Inspired by the beauty and vulnerability of wildlife, particularly species under threat of extinction, she aims to show both the character and inner soul of individual creatures.


Lynne is also inspired by natural open spaces and wild environments and loves using freer brush strokes and mixed media to create abstract landscapes.  


She mainly uses acrylics on canvas but also likes the energy and fluidity of mark making with pens/inks and the softness of pastels.


Winner of The Painters 89 Animal Award at The Mall Galleries.  She regularly exhibits with the SC Group, AppArt and the Surrey Artists Open Studios.  She is happy to undertake commissions and you can view more of her work on her Instagram or Facebook pages.

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Diana Upcott

Contact Diana

Diana has always had a passion for painting and History of Art.  Her first job was with the Arts Council of Great Britain but after she left London she retrained as a teacher of English as a Foreign Language. She attended many different art classes and has always painted in her spare time.  She mostly works in oil and watercolour, although does some animal portraits in pastel.  She particularly enjoys painting people and landscapes and her extended family are frequent subjects.

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Shirley Watson

Contact Shirley

Shirley creates original hand cut lino prints, printed on a hand press using environmentally friendly inks, making each print individual and unique.

She discovered her love of printing after attending courses and becoming a member of Ochre print Studio in Guildford.

During lockdown she set up a studio and printing press at home to continue learning and developing her skills, and since leaving teaching in 2021 she has been working as a full time artist.

She loves to use colour and shapes found in nature. Her recent works have been created from walks in her local area and visits to the coast, where she has explored and discovered inspiration in the landscape.


To see more of Shirley’s work you can follow her on: Instagram / Facebook

To purchase prints visit her Etsy shop or email direct (press contact Shirley above for email)

Etsy shop                ShirleyWatsonDesign

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