Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Do you fancy painting in Provence?

Four years ago I certainly did! I spent an absolutely wonderful time drawing and painting Provence with friends while staying in the home of Julian Merrow-Smith (of Postcard from Provence fame)and his wife Ruth Phillips at the foot of Mont Ventoux.  Lots of really good memories.

Paintings on boards from last year's Autumn Course
Since that time Julian has started offering painting workshops - which have been very successful with students from all over the world for the last three years.

The bonus for those who have ever lugged kit around to previous painting holidays is that Julian provides everything you need - all the tripods, pochade boxes, plein air boards and painting materials - so no need to worry about weight or how to get them there!  I don't think I've ever known another tutor do this but to me it sounds like an absolute godsend!

You can see:

I've just heard from Ruth that they've got some spaces left on their October course which runs 10th - 17th October - when the Autumn colours should be well underway! Also, due to what I understand is now a favourable exchange rate, they are now able to offer places (in a shared room) at £1550 (instead of £1775) or 2185€ (instead of €2585) i.e. for those paying in £ or €

The accommodation is included in the covered by the fee for the course and is provided by Philip and Jude Reddaway (a couple who normally host wine tours) at La Madelene in MalaucĂ©ne (click to see location) - a restored priory surrounded by cherry orchards and vineyards. There's great information about the accommodation where the students stay on the Madelene website - see information about the house and the rooms. I always like to see the sort of room I'll be sleeping in!

Also very tempting is a house which Julian and Ruth are renting out, via AirBnB, to groups of painters on a self catering basis, with the option of hiring the kit and tuition with Julian.  This is in a hamlet near Bedoin - near to where Ruth and Julian are based - and I can certainly testify to what a great place the area is to draw and paint.  Plus how very peaceful it is - it's a great place to go to recharge the batteries!

I've been thinking I need to go back.........

If you're interested in painting plein air in Provence:

My sketch of the vineyards and Mont Ventoux
(see Four Go Painting in Provence for more about our stay in this part of Provence)