Painting Holidays in Italy

A Typical Day in Tuscany

If you are full of energy in the morning you may decide on a walk through the chestnut trees or a swim in the pool before breakfast. But like most of us you will probably opt for a gentle awakening to the smell of hot bread and coffee, listening to the song birds celebrating the start of another day. Take your fresh fruit, cereal, yogurt, acacia honey, cheese, home-made bread, cake and a big mug of tea or coffee onto the terrace and watch the patterns of the morning-sun casting shadows on the hills in the distance.

You may even see a Roe Deer grazing in the meadow or a ‘salamander with yellow spots making its way towards a damp patch in the garden. There’s bound to be a couple of wall lizards sunning themselves but the porcupines will be hiding until the sun goes down before they venture out.

Every morning the course begins with a demonstration and discussion in the studio. Then you will either paint at Val di Pozza, in Barga, the hilltop villages of Cascio and Sommocolonia, the lake at Pontecosi or one of the other stunning painting venues nearby.

On days when you paint at Val di Pozza Mari will spoil you with her Italian lunch of crostini, barley salad, gorgeous tomatoes with basil and oregano, sheep’s cheeses, and a glass or two of local wine. If you are out in Barga you will probably go to Capretze to have lunch on the terrace where you can admire the spectacular views across the valley.

The afternoon session finishes around 5pm unless of course  you become obsessed, when you may wish to continue painting until aperitif time. After a busy day of painting, relax around the pool or pick a quiet spot in the garden or chat on the terrace with your fellow painters. What will it be this evening? Mari’s lasagne, porcini mushroom risotto, lemon chicken and strawberry tiramisu or dinner at one of Barga’s favourite restaurants. Ristorante Locanda di Mezzo is situated in a beautiful candlelit piazza reminiscent of those wonderful Fellini films. The Osteria Angelio, in the centre of Barga Vecchia, is famous for its rustic dishes and a meeting place for the local Italians taking their evening passagiata. If it’s Saturday, the free day, it’s pizza night and the flames will be dancing in the pizza oven.

On the free day you may wish to go to Lucca or to explore some more of Barga or even go to Florence for the day. You may want to continue painting in the studio or just hang out at Val di Pozza. If there is something you especially want to do let us know and we can organise it for you.

The Garfagnana region is famous for its porcini mushrooms and the ‘Slow Food’ movement. Much of the food is organically grown as are the grapes for the wine. Our red table wine comes from the vineyards in the hills surrounding Lucca. Our white wine comes from the Veneto.

We cater for all dietary requirements.

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“We had the most wonderful time, driven up mountain sides ( even a flight of steps), spoilt, deliciously fed and of course the best tuition we have ever had! (We have been on seven painting holidays). “

Phyllis and Joan

 

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