RSMA becoming a member image
RSMA becoming a member image

Guidance on becoming a member of the Royal Society of Marine Artists

At the yearly AGM, held after the exhibition, the members of the RSMA vote for candidates that have applied for membership. Detailed below is more information on the process on becoming a member of the RSMA.


Firstly you must submit to the Annual Exhibition work of a consistently high standard and suitable subject matter. It is worth reiterating here that we are a marine society and submissions must be essentially marine in character, pertaining to the sea or tidal waters. Images of inland waterways, canals etc will not be accepted. We expect that, over a period of several years, a major proportion of the work you submit will have been accepted for showing in the exhibition.

The Society keeps a record of the number of works by non-members accepted for exhibition and takes this into account when short-listing potential candidates. It follows that if you have made an application for membership you will not necessarily be on that year's short-list. Some years we have a large number of applicants and only those with the best exhibiting record will be considered.

Membership is gained by election. This is a democratic process: our current members all have an equal opportunity to vote for those artists they consider have achieved the required high standard.

Membership is a two-stage process. If you are successful in becoming a candidate, you may first be elected to Associate Membership, which is usually followed by full Membership a few years later.

Please also bear in mind that we hope our Members will wish to participate fully in the life and work of the Society. The RSMA is affiliated to the Federation of British Artists but it remains autonomous and self-governing and the continued existence and success of the Society is the responsibility of the Members.

This means regularly producing work for the Society's exhibitions, both at the Mall Galleries and, on occasion, at galleries in other parts of the country. We also hope you will be prepared to serve on the Council and the various Committees, or to assist with a number of other roles that are vital to the continuing success and development of the Society.

Procedure for application

We welcome new members. Please write to the Hon. Secretary (or email), or to the FBA Secretariat stating that you wish to be considered as a candidate.

Your request will be considered by the Hanging Committee, prior to the start of the exhibition. Your record of previously exhibited work will also be taken into account.

The composition of the our Committees change each year allowing full participation in the judging process by all Members of the Society.

If you are successful in becoming a candidate you will be judged by the whole Membership at the AGM which immediately follows the annual exhibition. A simple majority vote secures election as an Associate Member.

The term of Associate Membership is a maximum of 5 years, in the last 3 of which the Associate is eligible for election to full Member. Again the election takes place at the AGM by the whole of the Membership.

Membership Subscriptions

Non-members often remark on the expense of submitting work and are sometimes unaware that membership also has its costs.

The current annual subscription for an Associate is £120 and £250 for a full Member.

The Royal Society of Marine Artists

17 Carlton House Terrace, London SW1Y 5BD.

Telephone: 020 7930 6844

Registered Charity No. 289944