What to pack for your painting holiday

Painting holidays in GreeceHeading off to capture the world on canvas? Aristotle once said that the hand was the tool of all tools. However, when it comes to painting a masterpiece, you may find you need a few extras.

Your painting retreat will usually provide anything large that your might need, meaning you needn’t lug an easel, stool or huge drawing board through the airport. They are also likely to supply brushes and basic materials such as pots, paints, rags, tape and paper. Nevertheless, there are a few optional things that you might want to pack too.

If you have a set of brushes you like working with, it might be a good idea to bring them along. You might also want to take your own paints, particularly if you have a palette you know and like. It’s probably best to make sure this includes red, yellow, blue, black and white. Oil paints are highly flammable so pack them in your check-in luggage to avoid them getting confiscated at airport security.

A large sketch pad would also come in handy, particularly if you have room for an A3 one. A good artist never goes anywhere without a drawing pencil either so throw a couple in, if you have them.

If you don’t want to work on paper, it might be worth bringing paint boards, primed paper or even a canvas.

Often, you can order materials in advance for an extra cost so they are ready and waiting for you when you arrive at your painting school: great news if you are travelling by plane and are anxious about getting such items in the overhead lockers.

Painting holidays in ItalyIf you take boards or canvases, wrap them in plastic bags to protect them, these will also come in handy when it comes to transporting you masterpieces home.

Any other specialist materials can often also be ordered in by the painting school or hired for an extra fee, providing you let them know in good time before your trip. Many courses are located near great art shops so don’t worry if you forget something you need.

It’s a good idea to take an old rucksack or tote bag to carry your equipment in when you go out painting for the day. You may also want to pack a camera, sun cream and a sun hat, and a pair of comfy shoes (in case the best views require a bit of a walk).


You can find our amazing painting holidays perfect for every artist here.