The Japanese have a word for it: Shibusa, everyday beauty

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

In his enforced quarantine, our friend and Watermill painting tutor Mike Willdridge has been exploring the concept of Shibusa, the Japanese word for ‘beauty in everydayness. Mike says: “I plan on exploring this concept in my now limited horizons – and to post a new drawing every day.”

Mike has been doing this for the past week or so now. Above you can see his effort on Day 8, when a single vapour trail in the morning sky above Maiden Castle, Dorset, England, caught his eye: “Well, Shibusa is about simple beauty.”

Earlier, on Day 3, he was still able to visit his allotment: Small stirrings of activity as winter slowly turns to Spring. This simple drawing, I think, sits nicely under the Shibusa banner.”

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

You will be able to enjoy the simple beauty of the Watermill, its buildings and grounds, and the stunning surrounding countryside of Lunigiana, with its rivers and valleys, ancient villages slumbering under the Tuscan sun, castles and convents, vineyards and olive groves – and much more besides.

Painting by Mike Willdridge, a tutor at The Watermill at Posara painting holidays/vacations, Tuscany Italy.
Mike’s picture of the River Rosaro, which runs beside the Watermill.

In these difficult times, why not give yourself something to look forward to and join Mike here? His course will run from Saturday 29 August to Saturday 5 September and there are more details below. We think things will be back to normal by then, but don’t forget the Watermill’s coronavirus promise:

  • Rest assured that if travel restrictions in your own country or in Italy mean that the course cannot run on these dates, or that appropriate flights are not available, we will postpone your course again to later in the year or even until 2021.
  • If a workshop is cancelled, rather than just being postponed, we will refund any payment in full.
  • If a workshop is postponed and you cannot make the new dates for the tutor you have chosen, we will offer you alternative courses with others inspiring tutors, either this year or next.

Below is Mike’s drawing (more detailed than Shibusa, but just as beautiful) of the millstream as it bubbles beneath one of our sinuous bridges. Come and see for yourself. We would love to welcome you here.

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


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Mike Willdridge
29 August – 5 September 2020 – three or four places left
Watercolour and drawing (also gouache and acrylics)
To learn more about Mike and his course at the mill, please visit his 2020 Profile Page.


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