Go with the Flow: An Intuitive Approach to
En Plein Watercolour Painting

With Karen Bishop

25th October - 1st November 2024

Karen Bishop is an experienced outdoor painter.  Whatever the weather Karen can often be found perched on a rock, brushes in hand, fully immersed in the scene before her.


Karen’s approach begins with a simple mantra:

Look three times
Think twice
Draw once


The art of looking is something we don’t always appreciate and even though Karen paints quickly, and often seems to have little plan, her brushstrokes are carefully considered before they hit the paper.  You will be encouraged to sit with the scene before you to take in the sights and sounds.


As you do so you will find yourself naturally contemplating how to achieve colours and shapes and your work will become less focused on capturing a realistic interpretation of the landscape and more about capturing the feel of the moment.


Karen will also introduce you to the joys of working on yupo paper – this smooth, bright which , tree-free paper is so fun you will find you can’t help but get loose and free with your colours and your painting technique – you will literally “go with the flow” and your paintings will reflect that loose, spontaneous and intuitive approach.


Participants will be strongly encouraged to try their hand with the yupo and Karen will bring extra paper for those who may not be able to source it in their locale.  You are also free to use traditional cotton rag paper for your watercolours if you prefer a more controlled outcome.


We will begin the week with a chat about how to handle yupo, some quick studies to loosen up and get used to the feel of the paper.  Outside work will consist of demos and one on one help with composition and technique.  If needed we will continue in the studio to finish our on-site work.


During the week we will also make time for a session on the reductive technique – a unique approach to yupo that sees you removing the paint and creating shapes in a new and exciting way.


At the end of the week Karen will show you how to finish your work so that you don’t need to frame under glass.


Some experience with watercolour is preferred but not essential as Karen is a patient and knowledgeable artist who will tailor her approach to individual needs.

SHotel Frontage by Karen
SPigeon MAn

About Karen

The tutor, Karen Bishop, was born in Cheltenham, England, in 1968 and moved to Kingston, Ontario, in the winter of 1992. When she first arrived in Canada she was unable to work while waiting for her papers, so she made use of the time by enrolling in some art classes which she enjoyed very much.


In 2002 she graduated from the University of Alberta’s Extension centre with a Fine Arts certificate. Since 2007 she have been pursuing her art full time and between May of 2011 and January of 2016 she co-owned and operated The Daffodil Gallery in the heart of Edmonton’s Gallery

Included in the price:

• All tuition fees 


•  7 nights accommodation in luxury  air-conditioned, en-suite rooms with:   see our rooms here

   – Luxury bedding

   – High quality, 100% natural, Italian toiletries:  shampoo, shower gel, body lotion and hand gel

   – Daily servicing of the rooms

   – Mid-week linen and towel change
   – 100% cotton waffle robes and slippers


•  All meals including breakfast, buffet lunch and a choice of up to 4 courses from our daily changing gourmet evening menu


• A ‘pizza-giro’ evening at a local trattoria within a few minutes walk of the hotel


• Delicious local wine with lunch and evening meal


• Private group transfers to and from either Ancona airport or Pedaso (station or bus stop)


• 5 days painting tuition including demonstrations and one-to-one advice and guidance


• 3 days’ excursions to specially selected stunning locations


• Private transfers to and from painting locations 


One Free day with the option to take an excursion to the beautiful town of Ascoli Piceno, a Renaissance town full of history as well as fabulous boutique shops, charming cafes and one of Italy’s most beautiful piazzas (lunch not included)


• Unlimited use of air-conditioned studio


• full-time staff on-site including concierge service

Prices start from €1999 per person based on two people sharing a room.



To secure you spot on the retreat please click on the Retreat Booking button above, complete the form, select your preferred room type and pay a non-refundable deposit of €350.


Travel / Transfers


The group pick up is at 2pm from Ancona airport and 3pm at Pedaso train station or bus stop. 


On the day of departure we will leave for Ancona airport after breakfast at 9.30am.  Hotel Leone is about one hour and a quarter from the airport so you should arrive just before / around 11.00am your ideal return flight should be later than 12 noon.


If you’d like to arrive a day or two early and stay in Ancona or Pedaso, below are the hotels we normally recommend:


Grand Palace Hotel, Ancona


Albergo Cantina, Ancona


Villa Ricci, Pedaso

For more information, including pricing per room type, please fill in your details below

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