La Bonne Etoile in Fontaine-Fourches, France, a second home to me now. Kippy's and Jerome's beautiful 250 year old farmhouse can accommodate 10 of us. We are wined and dined to excess; the table is set beautifully for every meal, and there is laughter until the wee hours. But everyone is always wide awake and eager the next morning to get into the studio for a full day of painting with the model.
In the studio we set up a Degas-esque boudoir scene with an antique iron bed and lots of patterned fabrics. We will have photo sessions with a model, and work from our photos later in the week. If we do make it to the studio at night, Kippy sends up tray of wine glasses and munchies. You can paint in pastels or oils. Or both.
We take afternoon breaks to visit a nearby market, a gorgeous chateau or museum (more photos to paint from). We spend a day in Paris, wandering at leisure through the Musee d'Orsay, stopping for crepes, cafe au lait or expresso (I always go for the cafe creme). We go to brocantes on Sundays, vintage flea markets, in search of all sorts of wonderful things to stash in our suitcases. Each year I come home with something special from a brocante: beautiful original framed drawings from 1930, a small bronze sculpture, vintage French kitchen gadgets.
Our 2 week class and adventure culminate on our last night together with a vernissage, an intimate art exhibition, where friends and neighbors drop in and admire all the work we created.
The whole experience is crammed full of art and France. Not a minute is wasted. You will feel you have had a real taste of that beautiful country, you will return home with a lot of work to frame, and you will have made lifelong friends.
If you are thinking you may want to join me in France, you can register online here. If you're wanting to bring your spouse, that might be possible. Questions? Email Kippy. Here's a flyer with details.
his work close up for most of my life. We will do that. Details are here.
I know this is an awful lot to read, so tomorrow I will talk about Florence, May 24-June 2, 2016.