Keep It Simple and Take It with You Everywhere!

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

What is ‘It’? Why, it’s a sketchbook! And, says Watermill painting tutor Mike Willdridge, those two simple tips will not only add to your daily enjoyment, but improve your painting too.

Tip one: Keep It Simple. Mike says: “Choose a sketchbook that fits a pocket/handbag/rucksack etc. and as few pens/pencils/paints as possible.” The picture above is of the basic kit he takes with him everywhere: when going for a walk, enjoying a coffee, or lunch or dinner, or simply sitting in the sun. Mike is currently in Australia, visiting his grandchildren, and here’s a simple sketch of a bicycle made from a café in Manly across the Bay from Sydney:

The Watermill at Posara for painting, creative writing, knitting, and Italian language holidays/vacations/workshops, Tuscany, Italy.

Tip two: Take It with You Everywhere. Not just when you are sightseeing or feeding the inner man or woman, but also when your shopping or travelling. Mike says: “It doesn’t matter if you don’t use it at first. You will eventually, but get into the habit of taking your kit with you everywhere you go.”

Mike practises what he preaches, and he will encourage you to do the same when you join his Watermill week this year. Mike will be back with us from Saturday 29 August to Saturday 5 September 2020, and we’d love you to join us for his fun-filled, sun-filled, inspiring week. There are more details and links below. Here is Mike’s sketch of a couple of our guests enjoying animated conversation in the sunlit Watermill courtyard.

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

Here are a few more of his sketches, made when out ‘on location’ during one of his Watermill courses. Each was painted rapidly, merely to give an impression of the scene.

Painting by Mike Willdridge, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany, Italy.
Mike’s sketch of one of the small wooden bridges across the millstream.

Below is a sketch in the tranquil monastery of the Convento del Carmine, a few miles from the Watermill, where we take you to paint on Thursdays:

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

Mike Willdridge works in a wide range of media and is an enthusiastic and energetic tutor, often encouraging his students to be bold and to take chances. His classes are always light-hearted and fun, with the ‘teaching’ tailored to individual needs. He will concentrate on watercolours, but is also happy to help with gouache and acrylics too.

Some comments from previous guests: “A wonderful holiday. You were such generous and friendly hosts and Mike was an excellent painting tutor.”  Another said: “The food was exceptional and the mill itself is great, in such a beautiful setting. A truly wonderful week in every respect.”

Painting by Mike Willdridge, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany, Italy.
Fivizzano market, where our painting group go Tuesdays.

Everything is included in the cost of your holiday at the watermill: tuition, accommodation (including all linen and towels), pre-dinner aperitifs, all meals and wines (including outings to 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!

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

29 August to 5 September 2020 

Mike Willdridge – three or four places left

Watercolour and drawing (also gouache and acrylics)

To learn more about Mike and his course at The Watermill, please click here.

Come and paint with Mike for creativity, conviviality – and fun

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