Drawing and painting are adsorbing skills, which can be learnt in this stress-free luxury holiday. Although this short course will take a beginner through the process of watercolour painting there will be plenty of ideas for the more experienced artist.
It is advisable to bring some equipment of your own to gain confidence and build on what you already use. We will be happy to advise pre-cruise the best items to bring. We will have a variety of materials available on board.
Artist, Julie Hyde, will be your tutor for this week. She works in a range of media, pastels, oils, watercolours, ink, acrylic etc. and a wide variety of subjects, from life to landscape. Her passion for art is infectious and her fun loving, easygoing personality makes everyone feel capable of producing presentable art works.
She has inspired many people to carry on to do successful works of their own.
Sunday, Day 1 - London to Hampton Court Palace
Meet Julie for afternoon tea at the Stafford Hotel at 3pm before being escorted to Magna Carta via an art gallery of your choice. Once aboard, meet the crew, settle in and enjoy a Champagne reception and evening cruise to Hampton-Court-Palace.
Monday, Day 2 - Hampton Court Palace to Shepperton
A picture can say more than a thousand words. Drawing is one of our oldest forms of communication and expression, but with our busy lives our brains have learnt to take short cuts so that we now don't really see and take in the world around us. Julie will explain and demonstrate the simple rules of proportion, perspective, shading and tonal values, which will allow anyone to sketch and draw.
After practising and getting confidence with these skills using a range of pencils we will experiment with other media such as charcoal, pen and pen and wash to find a media you can have fun using.
We will then head out into the wonderful surroundings of Hampton court and gardens. Here there will be plenty to inspire and intrigue so that you will produce some wonderful paintings.
Tuesday, Day 3 - Shepperton to Runnymede
Julie will demonstrate the different ways that watercolours can be applied and how to plan and build up, stage by stage your own watercolour pictures. We will play with wet on wet, basic washes and dry brush techniques giving you confidence to use these for your own pictures. Julie will explain the mysteries of paper stretching and will advise you on the vast rage of selection of equipment that is available in the art shops.
We will have spent the morning cruising up to the historic site of Runnymede and we may decide to capture the dignity of the Magna Carta Memorial or the Commonwealth Air Force Memorial high on Coopers Hill.
Wednesday, Day 4 - Runnymede to Windsor
Although today we will look at skies, water and foliage, with all the fabulous colours that we can see in them. Julie will show some simple ways to portray these.
After a spectacular morning cruise we can explore Windsor Castle, Home Park or Eton College to put the theory into practice. Julie will show you how to get different affects to depict the ever-changing British weather. We will also look at light and shade and ways of tackling buildings.
Thursday, Day 5 - Windsor to Cookham
This morning, we enjoy the most magnificent of scenery as we cruise through Dorney, Bray and Maidenhead. The stunning Clivedon reach is truly awesome and we may tie up to an island for some more art.
We continue on to Cookham where we can visit the Stanley Spencer gallery. Spencer, (a most eccentric painter) would transpose biblical scenes onto his surroundings and believed that his beloved Cookham was a village made in heaven.
We can wander around the village, which is still much loved by artists today.
Julie will show you some of the 'fun' techniques that can be used with watercolours. We will play with salt, toothbrushes and cling film to produce some interesting effects.
Friday, Day 6 - Cookham to Hurley to Henley-on-Thames
We will cruise today to Hurley where Peter Freebody's boat yard gives some interesting subjects for drawing and painting. We can try and depict the craftsmen at work and the little nooks and crannies make superb subjects for paintings. We will then travel on to Henley, which is another beautifully British town, with its bridge, church, boats and riverfront, all of which are wonderful to paint.
Later in the day we will have an exhibition of the work we have done over the week and Julie will talk about framing and mounting your work. For our final evening Julie will join Dominic in hosting the Captain's gala dinner.
Saturday, Day 7 - Henley-on-Thames
Following breakfast, disembark the barge for your transfer to the designated drop off point.
: This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change. On alternate weeks the cruise is in the reverse direction.
It's not how far nor how fast, it's the pleasure of the journey that keeps people coming back for more.
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