Back from Provence

It’s been a while since my last post and the reason is that Ellen and I were in the south of France for two weeks. I was very fortunate and joyful to be able to participate in a week-long sketching workshop with the amazing Shari Blaukopf. I’ll be posting my drawings from the workshop over the next several days so stay tuned!

We met the group of 12 participants at the TGV station in Avignon. Getting there a day early, we stayed overnight at a nearby hotel and had several hours to fill before meeting the group so I set up my stuff and did a sketch of the front of the train station. There were large planters with a variety of exotic plants in the plaza and, in the bright Mediterranean sunshine, it made for an interesting sketching subject. The station is designed with many vertical glass panels in white metal framing, creating a repeating pattern along the outside of the building.

We finally met the group along with Shari and her husband Spyro as well as the group leader, Natalia and rode to the home base for the week, the village of Fontaine de Vaucluse. It is a magical place and provided amazing views in all directions. On our first day of the workshop Shari painted a demo and had us practice doing value sketches (drawings that concentrate on organizing light and dark areas of the composition). From the monochromatic value sketch we later did a full color version of the same composition.

Later the same day, after a wonderful outdoor picnic with local specialties and produce provided by Natalia, we did another drawing to concentrate on capturing shadows. The subject was a beautiful Oleander bush against a small building (garage). It was a long and busy but fruitful day and a great beginning to the workshop. Much more to come…

Author: Jeff Gold

I'm a retired musician (oboist) now living in Vermont and exploring various avenues of art, urban sketching, life drawing, block printing and digital abstractions.

10 thoughts on “Back from Provence”

    1. It was truly amazing. Shari is a fantastic teacher and the group was incredibly friendly and simpatico. There were several really wonderful artists and it was a treat to be a part of it.


    1. Thanks Donna. There are a couple that need finishing (bit off more than I could chew in the time allowed) but the rest will be coming regularly for a while along with photos of that magical place.


    1. Thank you for your response. I’ve never really considered it and I’m not set up for it but who knows? I think I’d rather just concentrate on doing the painting. I know it could be instructive (I’ve viewed several videos done by others) but right now, I don’t have plans to do any.

      Liked by 1 person

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