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Is that an Early Bird discount I see?

Blog upside down Early BirdIt may not be entirely flattering, but I couldn’t resist passing on this picture, which appeared on my Facebook page this morning. I hope it makes you laugh, as it did me.

I am not suggesting you should adopt this position of this bird, but it did remind me that you have only a couple of weeks of so left to take advantage the Watermill’s Early Bird discount, which expires at the end of the year.

If you book before 31 December 2015 there’s a £75 per person discount on each of our fabulous 2016 painting holidays. Courses are filling fast (some 90 places already taken), so now is the time to book – and receive the Early Bird bonus.

We’d love to welcome you on one of our sun-filled, fun-filled courses next year. Come and join us – and be an elegant Early Bird. You can find out more about everything by clicking here.

Here’s the full list of our inspiring 2016 painting tutors, with links to more details about them – and  more of their stunning pictures. .

 Painting by Janie Pirie, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.14 May to 21 May 2016

Janie Pirie Painting plants with coloured pencils.

Please click here to learn more about Janie, her course at the mill and to see more of her pictures.

 

Painting by Sarah Yeoman, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.

Please click here to learn more about Sarah, her course at the mill and to see more of her pictures.

 

 

A painting by Sandra Strohschein, a tutor on painting courses at The Watermill at Posara, Tuscany Italy18 June to 25 June 2016

Sandra Strohschein Watercolours

Please click here to learn more about Sandra, her course at the mill and to see more of her pictures.

 

Painting by Lea Nixon, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.25 June to 2 July 2016

Lea Nixon Watercolours

Please click here to learn more about Lea, his course at the mill and to see more of his pictures.

 

Painting by Terry Jarvis, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.2 July to 9 July 2016

Terry Jarvis Watercolours

Please click here to learn more about Terry, his course at the mill and to see more of his pictures.

 

Painting by Amanda Brett, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.9 July to 16 July 2016

Amanda Brett Watercolours

Please click here to learn more about Amanda, her course at the mill and to see more of her pictures.

 

KeithHornblower_Venice-GrandCanalFromTheRialto28x38cm13 August to 20 August 2016

Keith Hornblower Watercolours

Please click here to learn more about Keith, his course at the mill and to see more of his pictures.

 

Painting by Mike Willdridge, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.27 August to 3 September 2016

Mike Willdridge Watercolours, oils and acrylics, drawing, sketching

Please click here to learn more about Mike, his course at the mill and to see more of his pictures.

 

Painting by Sarah Spencer, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.3 September to 10 September 2016

Sarah Spencer Oils and acrylics, drawing

Please click here to learn more about Sarah, her course at the mill and to see more of her pictures.

 

Painting by Lisa Fu, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.24 September to 1 October 2016

Lisa Fu Watercolours

Please click here to learn more about Lisa, her course at the mill and to see more of her pictures.

 

Painting by Lea Nixon, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.1 October to 8 October 2016

Lea Nixon Watercolours

Please click here to learn more about Lea, his course at the mill and to see more of his pictures.

 

David Lucca anfiteatro8 October to 15 October 2016

David Taylor Watercolours

Please click here to learn more about David, his course at the mill and to see more of his pictures.

 

*** Why not bring your non-painting partner as well? There’s a generous £200 discount for him/her if they share a room with you  — and there’s plenty for them to do. Have a look at our Partner’s Activities suggestions by clicking here.

 

Why a Lucchese Bicycle Repair Man is a superhero to Watermill painting tutor Amanda Brett

Painting by Amanda Brett, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.Do you remember Bicycle Repair Man, a hero of the Monty Python TV show way back when? “Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No it’s Bicycle Repair Man!”

Well, a bicycle repair man in Lucca is a hero to our lovely New Zealand watercolour painting tutor Amanda Brett. His name is Signore Paladini and that’s him in his engineering workshop in Amanda’s painting above. She painted it during her visit to the wonderful walled city of Lucca last year. Amanda says; He’s a lovely, lovely man, very sweet and kind. He fixed my easel for me and then he fixed my brollie!! His family has lived in Lucca for more than 500 years!”

Amanda will be joining us at The Watermill next Summer and during her week with us we’ll also take a trip to Lucca, one of our favourite Italian cities. And here’s one of my favourite Amanda Lucca watercolours of a pink Fiat 500 in the city!

Painting by Amanda Brett, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.

We are looking forward to seeing how Amanda and her students capture the unique flavour of the Watermill and the towns and villages nestling in the glorious countryside surrounding the mill.

Amanda is an experienced workshop tutor, both in her native New Zealand and abroad — and she loves passing on her passion to her students. She says: I never knew I would love teaching watercolour as much as I do.She adds:It’s my job to help you develop your style and create better art.”

Here’s a comment from one of her students: “Amanda shared all her super secrets with us so freely, and gave each student equal time and attention.” And here’s another:I am primarily a portrait artist but you’ve given me skills to work in other areas I want to pursue too and watching you paint was invaluable. You are a very talented and generous woman, and a wonderful tutor. Yours is only the second watercolour workshop I have ever attended – you can get good artists and you can get good art tutors but it is hard to find the two in one person, and you are gifted at both.”

Painting by Amanda Brett, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.

Amanda painting LuccaSaturday 9 July to Saturday 16 July 2016

Amanda Brett Watercolours

To find out more about Amanda and her course at the watermill next year, please click here. And to enquire about availability and/or reserve your place, please click here.

 

Early Bird discount: book now!

If you book before 31 December 2015 there’s a £75 per person discount on this fabulous 2016 painting holiday.

*** Why not bring your non-painting partner as well? There’s a generous £200 discount for him/her if they share a room with you  — and there’s plenty for them to do. Have a look at our Partner’s Activities suggestions by clicking here.

Tempted by Terry in Tuscany? Time to succumb!

Painting by Terry Jarvis, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.Is it cold and damp where you are? Are you tempted by the warmth of a Tuscan Summer – and the warmth of a watermill welcome, and a warm and sympathetic tutor?

Time to succumb to your Tuscan temptation and come and paint with Terry Jarvis on his sun-filled, fun-filled course at The Watermill this Summer. And if you book now you’ll also take advantage of our Early Bird discount: £GBP 75 off this inspiring painting holiday.

Painting by Terry Jarvis, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.

Terry Jarvis painting cropped moreTerry Jarvis is returning to The Watermill next Summer for a week-long painting course in watercolours.* It will run from Saturday 2 July to Saturday 9 July 2016. Terry is one of Australia’s leading watercolour artists and a great fan of the watermill and the surrounding area of Lunigiana. *Terry works in oils, pastels and acrylics, as well as watercolours, and is happy to teach in those media too.

Here’s Terry’s  sunny picture of Market Day in our nearby walled Medieval town of Fivizzano. He says: “A captivating part of the week during a watermill painting holiday, when you meet the locals in the square by an incredible 16th Century Fountain. Just straight out of the movies! While I am there I love to buy a big bunch of flowers for the watermill.”

Painting by Terry Jarvis, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.

Inspiring and relaxing: Terry's course at the Watermill is both!

Inspiring and relaxing: Terry’s course at the Watermill is both!

The son of a goldminer, Terry was inspired at an early age to draw and paint the landscape, as well as people and animals. He now exhibits widely and is a popular tutor at workshops around the world. He loves drawing and helping his students to develop their drawing skills. Here’s what one guest on Terry’s previous course at the watermill had to say: Terry Jarvis was superb with people, very positive and very relaxed. I’ve been on painting holidays before and learned nothing but Terry was great. When you got stuck he’d come along with a smile – and a brush – and bring your picture to life. He wasn’t afraid to criticise your work, but he had a really positive attitude, which helped you to improve.”

Terry rose demo POV2 July to 9 July 2016

Terry Jarvis Watercolours (and oils, pastels and acrylics)

Please click here to learn more about Terry and his course at the mill.

 

Early Bird discount: book now!

If you book before 31 December 2015 there’s a £75 per person discount on this fabulous 2016 painting holiday.

 *** Why not bring your non-painting partner as well? There’s a generous £200 discount for him/her if they share a room with you — and there’s plenty for them to do. Have a look at our Partner’s Activities suggestions by clicking here.

From Sandra: a Christmassy reminder to be an Early Bird

Painting by Sandra Strohscheim, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.Here’s an early Christmas card from our wonderful Watermill watercolour painting tutor Sandra Strohschein. Isn’t it fun! Just like the fun we had on Sandra’s course here last year – and which we are sure we’ll have when she joins us again next June. She is an extraordinary painter and an enthusiastic and sympathetic tutor.

The cheerful bird also reminded me to remind you of our Early Bird offer on Sandra’s – and all our creative courses – next year. A £GBP 75 discount (about $115) if you book before the end of this year!

Sandra in walled gardenSandra ( in the Watermill garden, left) began painting just six years ago but she has achieved an extraordinary mastery of her medium. Her work has been honoured and praised in many fine art shows and exhibitions and she also has a remarkable online presence, with her daily Facebook posts followed by thousands of fans. She works in a fast loose impressionistic style, but above all, she produces passionate, emotionally charged paintings, full of energy.

As for her teaching, people frequently tell her about how much fun they have on her workshops and how nobody ever wants them to end. A painting guest on her course at the mill last year said: Watching your demonstrations was such an education. Your speed at putting together a beautiful painting while talking us through your process and answering questions was testament to your talent. Your kind and patient individual help was invaluable.”

Here’s another striking watercolour, of the river that runs beside the Watermill:Painting by Sandra Strohshein, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays, Tuscany Italy.

And here’s one of our favourites: the red house in the square in the nearby walled Medieval town of Fivizzano, where we go to paint on market days. You can see the original hanging in pride of place in The Watermill sitting room.A painting by Sandra Strohschein, a tutor on painting courses at The Watermill at Posara, Tuscany Italy

Sandra Strohschein’s week-long painting course in watercolours will run from Saturday 18 June to Saturday 25 June 2016. She loves it here. Sandra says: Your venue is the best deal ….hands down…..you are the winner of European art venues! I am convinced!”  

We already have a few places left on this inspiring course, so now is the time to book, especially with the Early Bird discount deal: If you book for Sandra’s 2016 course before the end of this years, there’s a £75 (about $US 115) discount.

For more details of Sandra’s course, please click here. And to enquire about current availability and/or reserve your place, please use our Secure Enquiry Form, by clicking here.

Why not bring your non-painting partner as well? There’s a generous £200 discount for him/her if they share a room with you.  For more of what partners can do, please click here.

Painting by Sandra Strohschein, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.

Claire’s Yoga & Meditation Tips: Mindful walking

 Blog yoga Walking MeditationClaire Murphy, who is running our first-ever yoga and meditation retreat here next September, has sent us a few simple and straightforward tips and techniques, which you can incorporate as part of your everyday life. These contain elements of what Claire will be teaching during her five-day retreat here. We hope you find them helpful. Claire calls this one Mindful walking:

Wherever you find yourself, you can apply mindful walking: out shopping, on your way to work or evenoutside in your own garden

Be aware of your foot as it makes contact with the earth / pavement / floor

Notice the distribution of weight across the foot. Can you watch your breath as you walk?

Notice how your foot feels inside your shoes or if barefoot, the textures you sense

See if you can keep each step as a focus for a whole journey or even across the office to the photocopier!

Why don’t you join us to learn more on our relaxing and inspiring Unplug and Unwind yoga and meditation retreat at The Watermill next September?  Bookings are already coming in from people seeking spiritual refreshment with us in the tranquil heart of rural Tuscany. And we’ll enjoy some delightful walks, too. So come and unplug, unwind and walk with us!

Early Bird discount: If you book before 31 December 2015 there’s a £75 per person discount on the Unplug and Unwind retreat.

Lunigiana panorama

We think that Claire Murphy and The Watermill are the perfect combination for a yoga and meditation retreat where you can not only ‘unplug and unwind’, but also savour the true Italian lifestyle in Lunigiana, the unspoilt region of Tuscany surrounding the mill.

Yoga, meditation and massage have been a way of life for Claire for more than 25 years and she’s passionate about teaching them. Together we’ve created a unique five-day programme, with fresh and inspirational yoga and meditation sessions, plus inspiring visits to local historic and scenic attractions – and beautiful home-cooked Italian food and wines!

Claire says: “My aim is to offer classes that are fresh and inspirational, always being informed by the latest developments in yoga, meditation and mindfulness practices.”

*Please Note: this retreat will start on a Monday and end on a Saturday.

Claire Murphy head and shoulders 219 September to 24 September 2016

Claire Murphy Unplug and Unwind

Please click here to learn more about Claire and her course at The Watermill.

 

How to book a 2016 yoga and meditation retreat or find out more.

If you’d like to book or find out more, please visit our Yoga retreats website for more information, by clicking here, or use our secure Yoga Enquiry Form by clicking here. Or email us on info@watermill.

Early Bird discount: book now!

If you book before 31 December 2015 there’s a £75 per person discount on the Unplug and Unwind retreat.

 

Working with coloured pencil isn’t daunting at all, says Janie – and you don’t have to wait for the paint to dry!

Painting by Janie Pirie, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.Looking at Janie Pirie’s wonderful coloured pencil pictures of plants, like Rainy Day Blues above, it may seem daunting to try to emulate her work.

But, says Janie, students on her course at the Watermill next May will be amazed at home much they will learn – and achieve – in a week. She says: It can take me up to three weeks to complete a complex piece of work but these are large pieces and it is quite easy to complete a finished piece in a day – it all depends on the subject.  A piece of fruit, an interesting vegetable, a small flower on a stem are all subjects that can be drawn and coloured in one day.”Janie Work page (2)

Janie adds: “Working with coloured pencils isn’t as daunting as people think.  Many are under the misconception that it is a very slow process but when you consider water colour artists have to wait for their paint to dry before proceeding, coloured pencil artists don’t!  The way I look at it is this – if you want to produce a beautiful piece of work it’s going to take time.  It’s the layering that makes pencil work so vibrant and these layers give depth to the subject.  Putting the shadow colours on first, very gently and without much pressure, means the subsequent layers will look beautiful.  It is that first layer that will define the quality of the piece.”

Painting by Janie Pirie, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.

During Janie’s fun-filled, sun-filled course at the Watermill next year we plan to take you out for short visits to lovely locations nearby, but we’ll spend a lot of time in the mill gardens and in the light and airy Watermill studio, with its stunning views of mountains and the river. Janie says: “We’ll find something to draw – either from a market stall, a garden or the countryside – and take it back to the studio to draw and colour.”

Janie will take you through every stage of the process to achieve the very best results, from first observation to the creation of a rich and gloriously coloured picture. Her course is ideal for beginners and intermediates. Here’s a comment from one of her students: Everyone always finishes Janie’s courses on such a high, inspired and eager to create more beautiful paintings with real passion.” Another said: “Janie is extremely helpful, a wonderful, stimulating tutor, always ready to offer advice and support.”

Painting by Janie Pirie, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.Everything is included in the cost of your holiday at the watermill: tuition, accommodation (including all linen and towels), pre-dinner aperitifs, all meals (including meals with wine at charming local restaurants) and all local transportation (including transfers to Pisa airport and an excursion by train to Lucca or the Cinque Terre). You get to Pisa, Italy, we do the rest!

 

Janie Pirie head and shoulders14 May to 21 May 2016

Janie Pirie  Painting plants with coloured pencils

To find out more about Janie and her course at the watermill next year, please click here. And to enquire about availability and/or reserve your place, please click here.

 Early Bird discount: book now!

If you book before 31 December 2015 there’s a £75 per person discount on this fabulous 2016 painting holiday.

*** Why not bring your non-painting partner as well? There’s a generous £200 discount for him/her if they share a room with you — and there’s plenty for them to do. Have a look at our Partner’s Activities suggestions by clicking here.

Painting by Janie Pirie, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.

Refresh your body and mind and stimulate your art with Mike at The Watermill next year

Painting by Mike Willdridge, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.

Mike Willdridge’s wonderful watercolour of Flavio’s bridge and millstream gushing towards the river.

We recently received a kind a charming comment from Peter Stutt about his experiences on a painting holiday here earlier this year with Mike Willdridge.

 Peter says: I want to let you know how much we enjoyed the painting holiday in September. Although I have been learning to paint for a number of years – and I already knew how rewarding it was to spend time in Mike’s previous studio – I came away from the week in Posara really refreshed and more than ever wanting to get on and do more.

“Mike’s enthusiasm for the pleasure and the practise of art is both obvious and contagious; and I think it was evident that those with more and with less experience all benefited from seeing his demonstrations – he does not push a particular method but opens things up, for you to follow your own developments, while still providing a lead if needed.”Mike river demo“The demonstrations were clear and intelligible. The locations were varied and interesting and the mix of these had been well thought out. My current preoccupation is improving my watercolour and I got plenty to think about on that score but I particularly enjoyed Mike’s ‘refresher’ sessions on colour and on gouache; his sessions on dealing with scenes where there are a lot of people and movement; and on tricky perspectives in the landscape e.g. a flat area in a valley bottom seen from above. Painting by Mike Willdridge, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.“There was never a shortage of visual stimulation or ideas for work we could try out but equally each of us was left free to pursue what interested us. Altogether very worthwhile! The Watermill is in a delightful setting and you and your team were gracious and helpful hosts. My ‘non-painting’ wife, Joan, and I thoroughly enjoyed our time at the Mill!”

Our ears are burning, but it really is lovely to hear that our efforts to provide the perfect painting holiday are appreciated. Thank you very much Peter.

Mike new head and shoulders FINALMike Willdridge will be with us again next year from Saturday 27 August to Saturday 3 September 2016. He will concentrate on watercolour and drawing, but is also happy also to teach in gouache and acrylics.

Mike especially values drawing as a way of recording/responding to everyday events and makes constant use of a sketchbook. He’ll encourage you to do the same and to take a sketchbook on location, building up a journal of memories of your time at the watermill and in the unspoilt countryside of Lunigiana.

Early Bird discount: book now! 

If you book before 31 December 2015 there’s a £75 per person discount on this fabulous 2016 painting holiday. To find out more about Mike and his course at The Watermill next year, please click here. And to enquire about availability and/or reserve your place, please click here. And to find out about all our exciting watermill painting tutors in 2016, please click here.

 *** Why not bring your non-painting partner as well? There’s a generous £200 discount for him/her if they share a room with you — and there’s plenty for them to do. Have a look at our Partner’s Activities suggestions by clicking here.

Painting by Mike Willdridge, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.

Mike’s quick painting of the market in nearby Fivizzano, where we paint on Tuesdays

 

 

Lemons, oranges and limes: come and paint them — and much else besides — with Janie

Painting by Janie Pirie, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.I have just been looking at some of the wonderful work of our new Watermill tutor Janie Pirie, a sensational botanical artist. Those are her oranges, lemons and limes above. We’ll find plenty of those for you to paint, as well as Spring flowers:Sharon tuscan wild flowersJanie must be unique among painting tutors by being a double Gold Medallist of the UK’s Royal Horticultural Society! It reflects her love of plants, and of drawing them. Her work is now exhibited worldwide and she teaches in the UK and USA – using only coloured pencils.

As well as enjoying much success with her plant illustrations and botanical paintings, Janie also draws beautiful portraits and still lifes. Janie will be with us next May and as well as painting in the mill gardens and studio during her week-long course, you’ll visiting stunning locations in the beautiful scenery around the watermill. Here are some herbs in white jugs:Maybe we’ll put in the studio a jug or two of herbs from the walled garden for you to draw, too:

Janie Herbs-In-White-Jugs

Jan studio view

Janie will take you through every stage of the process to achieve the very best results, from first observation to the creation of a rich and gloriously coloured picture. Her course is ideal for beginners and intermediates. Here’s a comment from one of her students: Everyone always finishes Janie’s courses on such a high, inspired and eager to create more beautiful paintings with real passion.” Another said: “Janie is extremely helpful, a wonderful, stimulating tutor, always ready to offer advice and support.”

Everything is included in the cost of your holiday at the watermill: tuition, accommodation (including all linen and towels), pre-dinner aperitifs, all meals (including meals with wine at charming local restaurants) and all local transportation (including transfers to Pisa airport and an excursion by train to Lucca or the Cinque Terre). You get to Pisa, Italy, we do the rest!

Janie Pirie head and shoulders14 May to 21 May 2016

Janie Pirie  Painting plants with coloured pencils

To find out more about Janie and her course at the watermill next year, please click here. And to enquire about availability and/or reserve your place, please click here.

 Early Bird discount: book now!

If you book before 31 December 2015 there’s a £75 per person discount on this fabulous 2016 painting holiday.

*** Why not bring your non-painting partner as well? There’s a generous £200 discount for him/her if they share a room with you — and there’s plenty for them to do. Have a look at our Partner’s Activities suggestions by clicking here.

Pirie Rainly Day Blues

A little personal background in Keith’s pictures

Painting by Keith Hornblower, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.One of the things I like about some of the delightful paintings by our new watercolour tutor Keith Hornblower is their backgrounds. Not the background to the picture, but the personal background story. Keith is great in capturing the Englishness of village greens and churches, but there is also often a personal element that adds to the painting’s ‘story.’

Like the watercolour above of Arlesey Church in Bedfordshire, England. Keith says: A typical country church – one of my favourite subjects – and this one is rather special; my Mother and Father were married here. I painted fast and loose to capture the light and the use of dry-brush technique on rough paper gives it added sparkle. I used a very limited earthy palette to give the painting unity.”

Or this plein-air painting of a willow tree in a local park:

Painting by Keith Hornblower, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.

Keith says: “The tree was much beloved by my Father who could see it from his house. This was painted furiously fast, throwing, splashing and smudging the paint, scratching out and finally adding some opaque touches. I like my paintings to cover the whole tonal range from the brightest white to the darkest darks – it’s the only way to achieve drama.”

Keith will be joining us for a week-long watercolour course from Saturday 13 August to Saturday 20 August 2016 and we look forward to creating wonderful memories. Why not join him and do the same?

Keith painting picKeith Hornblower is an acclaimed English painter in watercolour, teaching and demonstrating to art societies and universities in the UK with enthusiasm and great humour. His approach is dynamic and spontaneous, dispelling the fear of white paper and encouraging people to let go and have fun. He stresses the importance of capturing the light and observation of tonal values, often using a very limited palette of colours to make things easier for his students.

Some comments from some of Keith’s previous students: “A magician with paint, your paintings always have the most wonderful light.” “Brilliant! This is what watercolour is all about for me — so free and fresh. What fun for you and your very lucky audience.” “A great tutor and so very helpful with techniques and tips.”

You can find more details about Keith’s exciting 2016 course by clicking here. And if you would like to enquire about availability and/or reserve a place, please use our Secure Enquiry Form, by clicking here.

Early Bird discount bonus 

If you book before 31 December 2015 there’s a £75 per person discount on this fabulous 2016 painting holiday.

*** Why not bring your non-painting partner as well? There’s a generous £200 discount for him/her if they share a room with you — and there’s plenty for them to do. Have a look at our Partner’s Activities suggestions by clicking here.

While the English country church and village green are inspirational for Keith, he’s no stranger to Italy. Here’s an atmospheric watercolour of the Grand Canal in Venice, seen from the Rialto Bridge, Venice: KeithHornblower_Venice-GrandCanalFromTheRialto28x38cmKeith says: “I have painted Venice many times and it keeps drawing me back. This one is atypically high-key, painted in the lightest tones with just a few colour accents and deep darks for drama. I learned that from Turner!”

Well, we can’t promise you the Grand Canal – only the river Rosaro, the millstream and the glorious unspoilt Tuscan countryside around us.  Come and join us!Macfie millstream reduced

Working Backwards: the progress of a painting, by Watermill tutor Sarah Spencer

Painting by Sarah Spencer, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.Our exciting new tutor in oils and acrylics, Sarah Spencer, has just published a fascinating blog on the progress of a painting, from sketch to finished work. That’s the first sketch above.

And here’s the finished painting:Painting by Sarah Spencer, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.In between there was the entrance and exit of a flock of sheep and some work with a handsaw to change the shape of the composition!

You can read — and see — the whole fascinating story on Sarah’s blog, by clicking here.

Sarah S H&S for tutor profileAward-winning English artist Sarah Spencer RAS, NEAC* is internationally known for her landscapes, portraits and still lifes. She has had no fewer than 10 solo exhibitions in London since graduating from the Royal Academy Schools. Her work has won national and international acclaim. (*Alumnus of the Royal Academy Schools, elected member of the New English Art Club and Federation of British Artists)

She also tutors painting courses and leads masterclasses for, among others, the UK Royal Academy and the University of the Creative Arts. She is a passionate and inspiring tutor and will take her Watermill students to paint en plein air at wonderful nearby locations, as well as teaching the art of portraiture and still-life in the Watermill studio. She will teach in oils and acrylics and in various drawing mediums.

Sarah’s course is suitable for beginners as well as more experienced painters. She says: “I am really looking forward to sharing my passion and passing on what I’ve learned about oil and acrylic painting and about drawing.”

Sarah’s course will run from Saturday 3 September to Saturday 10 September 2016. You can find more details by clicking here.  And if you would like to enquire about availability  and/or reserve a place, please use our Secure Enquiry Form, by clicking here.

Early Bird discount: book now! 

If you book before 31 December 2015 there’s a £75 per person discount on this fabulous 2016 painting holiday.

 *** Why not bring your non-painting partner as well? There’s a generous £200 discount for him/her if they share a room with you — and there’s plenty for them to do. Have a look at our Partner’s Activities suggestions by clicking here.

Oh! And here are those fleeting sheep!

Painting by Sarah Spencer, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.