Members Newsletter December 2022

Members Newsletter December 2022


Here's our latest newsletter for SAU members; with information about our Recent Rates of Pay increase; our Digital Detox Learning Event, our new Practical Support for Members sessions, and other relevant information including news about our Office Opening Hours over the festive season.



Due to the unprecedented levels of inflation we are currently experiencing, we have decided to raise our Recommended Rates Of Pay for Freelance work for the remainder of this tax year, we are therefore applying an average increase of 10% to all our previous hourly rates, compared with the rates for 2021/2022. (Earlier rates for 2022/23 are now in brackets). Usually our rates are increased in time for the new Tax Year at the start of April, so these rates will be increased again at that time, (so watch out for new ROP at the start of April!)

To see these updated rates check out our Webpage HERE, the ROP information is also available as a downloadable PDF HERE.

SAU Learning Logo

Digital Detox - watch the recordings now!

As artists and makers are still juggling online and IRL workloads, the union are advocating for members to consider undertaking a digital detox this winter. To help you, these recordings from our 2 part online course in November look at ways we can improve our relationship with technology. This course is delivered by Craig Steele & Daniel Devine from Digital Skills Education and these recordings are available for members to watch in the Learning Resources area of our website until Monday 9th January 2023 (please note: you will need to be logged in as a member to access this page).
You can also explore recordings from some of our other 2022 online talks series, including: Gaelic Visual Arts, Artists Walking Group and the Instagram for Artists how-to tutorials!

Support session

'Practical Support for Members 1-to-1s'

Do you have questions about calculating what to charge for a project with our rates of pay, need help completing a contract template or advice on artist's insurance?
We are trialing some new 1-to-1 online sessions, with Scottish Artists Union staff to help our members with practical support.
Taking place monthly, starting on Thursday 2nd February 11-12noon, (if the demand is high we will add more slots so do add your name to the waiting list).
You can select a 15 minutes slot hosted via Zoom HERE. 

The importance of ‘showing up’ for each other in the arts sector 

During this post-pandemic era and cost of living crisis, it is even more important to show up for each other at art events, art-house cinema screenings, live performances and exhibitions. Every time you cross the threshold of a gallery or artist-run initiative, fill in an exhibition attendance book, go to a screening, a live performance or art event, visit online artworks, or fill in a feedback form/survey (that organisations are required to submit to get future grant funding) you are helping to support the future of the whole Scottish arts sector. You are helping to maintain people’s jobs, core infrastructure and networks of our arts and cultural communities, which in turn gives us all opportunities. In Scotland, unlike many other places in the world, we are lucky that many art events and exhibitions are still free to attend. The more of us who attend, the more likely that art exhibitions and events will remain financially accessible.

It is also important that we show up for each other in our trade union. This sometimes literally means just showing up and being present. For example, in the SAU Learning Programme it is the members participating and learning together that creates the opportunity and space for solidarity and support in these sessions, and over the long term a more stable trade union for us all. Furthermore, the successful Scottish Union Learning grant applications that have been funding the SAU Learning Programme are reliant on our members showing up and taking part. If we don’t use it, we all lose it. Thank you to all of our members who have been taking part in the SAU Learning events, Subgroups, Working Groups, Rep team and Exec committee! 

Please keep on keepin’ on, and showing up for each other.

Art Pints promotional image

ART PINTS in Aberdeen

If you are based in Aberdeen, ART PINTS at SPIN is the place to be on Thursday Dec 15th at 6pm - 9pm (Free drink on arrival). Speakers include: Libby Curtis (Gray’s School of Art), Kirsten Body (Circus Artspace), Allan Watson (Deemouth Artists Studios) and Eleonora Belfiore (University of Aberdeen).  SPIN, Littlejohn St, Aberdeen, AB10 1FG. 

Black Oot Here

Black Oot Here: Black Lives in Scotland

layla-roxanne hill (SAU member) and Dr Francesca Sobande have co-authored a phenomenal and groundbreaking book. Black Oot Here: Black Lives in Scotland has been written with a deep sense of care, and in their words, “from a place of pausing, processing, piecing together, and, also, peering back from the archives.” It is a project of research and writing that “acknowledges the nuanced and expansive nature of many aspects of the lives of Black people in, from and connected to Scotland.” They have combined “their love of photography and visual culture with their intention to create work that aids the archiving of Black Scottish history.”

In October, SAU member Fadzai Mwakutuya (Afro Art Lab) led an utterly marvellous ‘in conversation’ event & book launch with layla-roxanne hill and Dr Francesca Sobande, in a packed cozy room at The Ceilidh Place in Ullapool. This book launch was part of a full day of Scottish Union Learning Black History Month activities (held at An Talla Solais and The Ceilidh Place) that was organised by Fadzai Mwakutuya in collaboration with Kirsten Body (SAU Highlands & Islands Learning Manager/Organiser) and Craig Finnie (Scottish Union Learning Highlands & Islands Development Officer). As part of Book Week Scotland, in November, layla-roxanne hill and Dr Francesca Sobande gave two more readings/discussions at events in Glasgow (hosted by the STUC) and in Edinburgh (co-sponsored by RACE.ED and The Salisbury Centre).

Black Oot Here: Black Lives in Scotland is available at bookstores, and on the Bloomsbury website. For more background on this book and the authors, check out their research website 

STUC Disabled Workers Conference

In November, Gael Hillyard (SAU Treasurer) was our delegate to the STUC Disabled Worker’s Conference. This is the first time that an SAU delegate has attended the STUC Disabled Worker’s Conference. Gael spoke up in support of a motion in agenda Section 3: Fair Work and Equality at Work, motion number 11 - Proactive Change for Neurodivergent Workers. Gael brought artists perspectives to the discussions at conference, and in her report, she has brought back important knowledge for our whole team, including helpful insights for delegates to future STUC conferences.

Disability History Month - artists making history

If you are taking a wander down by the Water of Leith, seek out Lives: Reimagined a collage installation by Sasha Saben Callaghan (SAU member).

Sasha Saben Callaghan also co-curated the Not Going Back to Normal Manifesto (2020) with Harry Josephine Giles. You can still view/read the 49 artworks and texts at the Not Going Back to Normal Manifesto website 

Over the past number of years, multi-disciplinary artist (and former Cove Park resident) Lisette Auton has been producing an incredible body of artwork and writing, including performance videos and books. Here is a link to Lisette Auton’s film Writing The Missing: A River Cycle (2020), which also features Bex Bowsher, Sarah Crutwell and Vici Wreford-Sinnott. 

This film is a brilliant example of how to embed audio description, captions and BSL into artists moving image work. 

SAU Exec needs you!

Are you good at listening & writing? Or, are you experienced in taking minutes at meetings?

We are looking for a member to fill the position of Minutes Secretary, and another member to be an alternate for back up. This volunteer's role is to record the minutes at the monthly Executive  Committee meetings, AGMs, and the occasional EGM. We have been immensely lucky that Shona Macnaughton has been volunteering as our Minutes Secretary, but unfortunately she has to step back from this role.

Thank you Shona for your awesome minutes!


Rab Noakes
Staff and Exec of SAU, and colleagues across the trade union movement, are deeply saddened to hear the news of the death of Scottish singer-songwriter Rab Noakes, who died on the 11th of November.  
As well as being an extremely talented musician, Rab was a tireless activist for the rights of musicians through his work with the Musicians Union. He was also very supportive of SAU, and all cultural workers, through his advocacy and solidarity work in the STUC Creative Industries Unions Committee, and his work serving on the STUC General Council. 
Rab Noakes was an immensely talented singer-songwriter, an utterly lovely human, a mentor to many, and a tireless trade union activist, standing up for all of us.
He will be very greatly missed.  


The SAU office will be officially closed for the winter festivals break from the 21st of December 2022 to January 4th, reopening on Thursday 5th January 2023.


XMAS is coming and it's the time for giving!! Have you thought of giving a GIFTED SAU MEMBERSHIP as a gift??? Please contact [email protected] to find out how. 

Also don't forget that we have a growing range of SAU merchandise in the form of T-shirts and Totebags available to purchase from our website. These make great presents, while helping to promote our union, and all proceeds help us to support artists and makers in Scotland. 

Sock image

Special offer from 9am Thursday 8th December to midnight Sunday 11th December.

During the offer, every order over £25 will receive a free lucky dip pair of bamboo socks when customers use the code SOCKY at checkout.

FAIR WORK Leaflets

New leaflet front image

If you would like to help promote the Union by distributing our FAIR WORK leaflets please get in touch and we can send you a bundle. Email us at [email protected] with the title 'Leaflets'

Updated Documents

Here are links to this years Insurance Documents and Recommended Rates of Pay for 2022/23

Here's a link to our Recommended Rates of Pay, that should be used for the current financial year. 

Here's a link to this year's Insurance Documents, which comes as part of you membership and that you can download when you need them. (We have stopped sending these out as paper documents in order to save on unnecessary paper and postage).

Have you checked out our list of Members Discounts ? As well as the free Insurance and legal advice that comes with your membership, you can benefit from big savings on art and materials supplies and various other relevant services.

Also: The Edinburgh International Festival have informed us that SAU members qualify for a 30% discount on tickets for Art Workers at this years EIF. Go to their website for more information. Tickets are subject to availability.

Show your solidarity with fellow artists by using our new "I'm a Member Sticker".

Have you tried using our 'Fair Work Contract Templates'? 

Our 3 FWC Templates can be used for creating or checking contracts for Exhibitions & Projects; Sales & Commissions; Workshops & Events; and are available for our members to download from the Resources section of the website HERE.

Brexit information for creatives working in the Arts in Europe

Please help us promote the activities of the union on social media by following and sharing posts. 

@SCOArtistsUnion | FB: ScottishArtistsUnion | Instagram:

Support Your Union!! Together We Are Stronger!!

We are here to help. We are a small team of part time workers, all artists and creatives, and a voluntary executive, currently email is the best way to get in touch. 

Stay warm, safe & healthy everyone.

Keep on Keeping on!!

Yours in Solidarity, 
Everyone at Scottish Artists Union



Related Stories

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. Click to say I’m fine with this.OK

Facebook Twitter Email