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Watercolour Painting in Florence

From £1700 pp

Florence, Italy

5 Nights / 6 Days

Small Group

Watercolour Painting in Florence

From £1700 pp

What You'll Do

Treat yourself to this fantastic opportunity to paint watercolours in the beautiful renaissance city of Florence - the perfect landscape for artists to become inspired and improve their skills.

2022 Start dates

7 May
24 September
8 October

Treat yourself to this fantastic opportunity to paint water colours in the beautiful Renaissance city of Florence. It doesn’t really get any better than this for artists. Soak up the ambience and culture of this famous historical city and allow your experienced tutor to guide you around from one inspirational backdrop to another.

Learn to paint quickly with impressionistic flair through expert tuition from your Academy trained tutor. Whether you’re into the illustrious facades of the ancient cathedrals and palazzos or the grand spaces of Florence’s many piazzas, you really couldn’t be in better hands.

With this tour, you will learn to compose interesting urban scenes with famous landmarks as your focal points which will wow your friends and family alike! Locations may include the Ponte Vecchio, Santa Croce, Il Duomo, The Boboli Gardens and views of the Arno.

Water colour can be both a challenging medium and an exciting one that offers huge scope for experimentation and unusual effects. Many techniques have been around for centuries and still form the foundation of water colour work.

These need to be mastered first- without knowing how to lay a wash or work, wet-in-wet for example, little progress can be made. But it does not take long to become familiar with these processes and then the enjoyable part of experimentation can begin.

A typical daily schedule: 

Every morning, breakfast will be served from 7:30-9am.

Everyday, your instructor will meet you at the reception at 9am and walk you to the painting location of the day. All the painting material you need will be supplied, but you may need to take spending money for coffee breaks etc, some sunscreen and appropriate clothing for the day.

At 12pm, you will end your morning workshop – however you may wish to continue working or return to B&B.

At 1pm lunch is at a local trattoria and is included within the course, with the exception of free day and when on location in the Boboli Gardens, when a packed lunch or picnic will be provided.

From 3-5pm you will continue your workshop at the morning location, or if you’ve finished, your instructor will provide you with a new project.

At 7:30pm, you will have dinner at the restaurant.

 

 

Experience
Highlights

Learn how to master numerous watercolour techniques

Immerse yourself in the beautiful city of Florence

Take in all the guidance from your experienced instructor

Your Local Host:

Jana

Jana is a co-founder at her retreat in Le Marche, Italy, and is in charge of guest hospitality as well as administrative tasks. She is the woman behind all of the logistics and bookings, as well as creating delicious seasonal menus during your stay.

Art tutor
– John Skelcher will be your landscape tutor and he has been teachin Read More

Experience Itinerary

Welcome to Florence!

Welcome to Florence!

This retreat takes place in the magnificent historic monastery in the heart of Florence. A heaven for peace and tranquility with a typical walled inner court-yard and gardens, frescoed ceilings and walls and antique corridors.

The rooms in this B&B are simply furnished, and the focus is on providing tranquility and a place for reflection and relaxation in this busy city, yet you will find all the modern conveniences provided for a comfortable stay.

You will be able to check in from 3pm onwards, and the welcome dinner begins at 7pm.

Accommodation: Borgo Pinti B&B
ponte vecchio in florence

Drawing and Painting Foundation, and Colour Theory Workshop

Breakfast will be served from 7:30-9am.

Everyday, your instructor will meet you at the reception at 9am and walk you to the painting location of the day. All the painting material you need will be supplied, but you may need to take spending money for coffee breaks etc, some sunscreen and appropriate clothing for the day.

At 12pm, you will end your morning workshop – however you may wish to continue working or return to B&B.

At 1pm lunch is at a local trattoria and is included within the course, with the exception of free day and when on location in the Boboli Gardens, when a packed lunch or picnic will be provided.

From 3-5pm you will continue your workshop at the morning location, or if you’ve finished, your instructor will provide you with a new task.

At 7:30pm, you will have dinner at the restaurant.

This morning, you will spend the first 3 hours drawing and painting in the peaceful setting of the monastery, from 9am-12pm.

After a brief introduction to our materials and equipment, you will start by considering drawing. Using an aquarelle stick (a special pencil with water soluble graphite) we make sketches of an architectural detail or a building. You will consider tonal value, edge quality, and perspective. A demonstration of drawing strategies and how to create washed effects will be followed by approx. 2hrs of practical time.

From 3-5pm, you will take part in a colour theory workshop.

Colour Theory will be introduced, and you’ll be instructed how to mix secondary colours from primary and tertiary colours from a primary and a secondary, expanding into neutrals and tints and black. It is designed for more advanced students, but is recommended to beginners as it thoroughly explains how all pigment colours can in theory be mixed from yellow, cyan and magenta. These skills will be very useful when we use our set of paints and how the colours are related or not.

Accommodation: Borgo Pinti B&B

The day starts with Breakfast from 07:30

9am-12pm: Putting things in perspective!

Today, you will take part in a ‘street view’ water colour workshop with composition based around single point perspective principles. From the first two days, you will be able to understand colour and how to draw – now, you will paint!

You’ll find a not so busy street view which will be chosen because it’s a one-point perspective view. A demonstration of how to draw a one-point perspective scene will be followed by a demonstration of how to prime the paper for washes.

You’ll then be taught how to lay in colours from the background to the mid- ground and then to the foreground, which will be emphasised by the use of ‘Action Lines’ in our composition. You will make use of techniques: wet on dry, dry brush.

3-5pm: Water colour painting demonstration and practical.

The afternoon gives plenty of opportunity for you to complete your artwork, or if complete, find another one-point perspective view and begin a new piece!

Accommodation: Borgo Pinti B&B

Tour of the Bargello Gallery and Farewell Dinner

From 9am-12pm, your instructor will take you on a guided tour and gallery visit to the Bargello Gallery, home to the finest collection of Renaissance statues in Florence.

In the afternoon, from 3pm-5pm, you will experience a vista-view with demonstrations and practical. You will be taken on a little tour over the other side of the river to the rose garden of the Rose Gardens, and from here you will see a beautiful uninterrupted panorama of Florence.

From this beautiful location you’ll make a new piece of artwork, using a toned ground, but before you begin to paint you’ll apply a mask to highlight areas to protect prominent building outlines and highlights.

Your instructor will show you how to quickly build up layers of colour as you come forward in the painting through the cityscape, trying to keep brushstrokes loose to convey an impressionist feel.

Techniques used today: Masking, reserving highlights, applying glazes, spattering, scumble glaze, graded washes, wet-in-wet, granulation, soft-edges, running in and scraping back.

The course will be concluded with a reflection of all of the work achieved during the course over aperitivi and a farewell dinner.

 

Goodbye!

Please check out by 11am. We hope to see you again soon!

Location Information

This course is based at a charming monastery in the heart of Florence, a short walk from all the main attractions of this grand city. With beautifully frescoed walls and ceilings, a beautifully landscaped inner court-yard garden and cloister walk-ways, it makes a perfect peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle. Thus, allowing you to recharge your batteries after a day’s painting and exploring this magnificent city through the eye of an artist. The rooms are simply and comfortably furnished, many reflecting the monastery’s history.

Please note airport transfers are not included.

  • 5 nights accommodation with breakfast, lunch and evening meals
  • 4 mornings tuition and afternoon program of study with critique of your work in the evening
  • All materials, Winsor and Newton watercolour paints, Kolinsky sable brushes, drawing equipment, incl. watercolour sketchbook
  • Guided tour of Florence’s historic art museums
  • Entry tickets

FAQs

Comfortable casual clothing and sensible shoes for walking, sandals, for the summer and comfortable shoes for when we are out and about all day. It rains even in Italy, and at times heavily. A rain coat, umbrella, layered clothing, a hat and long sleeves for sun-protection are recommended. Adequate clothing for painting, clothes may get stained. Aprons will be provided.

Lunch and dinners will be taken at carefully chosen Trattorias to provide a varied and local Tuscan cuisine from local fresh ingredients. Salads and a vegetarian option are also on offer. All meals are set for the week and include water and a glass of wine. If you are vegetarian or have dietary issues please ensure that this is stated at time of booking.

- Florence Amerigo Vespucci International
- Rome Leonardo da Vinci - Fumicino
- Rome Ciampino
- Pisa international
- Bologna Giuglielmo Marconi

Non-painting partners are welcome at reduced rate and can join us on all our trips and excursions.