Friday, August 19, 2011

The International Society of Scratchboard Artists

Society of Animal Artists Signature Member Cathy Sheeter  shares some exciting news...

First Ever Scratchboard Art Society Forming:
The International Society of Scratchboard Artists (ISSA)

Scratching, as an art form, has been around since the first people painted and scratched on cave walls. Today’s scratchboard is much more refined, allowing for intricate detail and a wide variety of styles. Scratchboard Art involves using a variety of abrasive tools to remove a dark color (usually black) to reveal a white layer below. Artists may leave the artwork in black and white or color it with a variety of mediums. Scratchboard has recently experienced a resurgence in popularity, is now finding its way into many fine art circles, yet still most people have never even heard of the medium.

With almost all other mediums having their own societies representing them and helping to promote their interests, it was felt that a similar society dedicated specifically to Scratchboard Art was overdue. ISSA has the goal of lifting the profile of scratchboard art internationally; providing exhibitions to showcase this art form, organizing workshops, uniting all artists working in the medium, and endeavoring to continue educating about the medium to the arts and public communities.

Membership within the society will include a variety of levels to encourage artists from novice up to professionals. Top tiers of membership and all shows will be carefully juried to encourage and promote excellence in the medium. At least one international show of scratchboard art will occur each year. In 2012 all scratchboard artists, worldwide, will be welcomed and encouraged to submit for jury to the inaugural ISSA International Exhibition of Scratchboard Art. The ISSA will begin accepting members in Fall of 2011. Its web site, presently still under construction, can be found at

The Founding Board Members of the ISSA are Lorna Hannett and Sue Rhodes from Canada, Patrick Hedges from Australia, Diana Lee, Ken MacFarlane, Cathy Sheeter (an SAA Signature Member), and Sandra Willard from the US.