Skip to content

Workshop News: Galway IE sold out! Thinking about India?

January 29, 2016


July 2016: IRELAND: This just in: our Galway Ireland Urban Sketching Workshop is sold out! Thanks everyone – we’re looking forward to meeting you all and starting the wandering sketch-trek from Galway to Manchester with those that will carry on with us. We have a short waiting list building up, so you can still contact Laurel to put your name down with the hopefuls.

15Oct02_India_TajMahal02FEB 2017: INDIA: It might seem like a long time in the offing – but if anyone is interested in our FEB 2017 painting adventure trip to India (Delhi/Varanasi/Agra) – it is worth it to sign up soon. We’ve just sold out Ireland six months in advance. So, don’t hesitate if you’re thinking you want in on that painting trip of a lifetime. Head over to the workshops page to get more info on registration.

Taking Stock

Trip Planning For Portugal Begins in Earnest!

In other news: I’m starting the ramp up for travel to Portugal! Stocking up colors and paper. I think I need a minimum of 6 sheets a day to be sure I won’t be short paper. (I’m bringing 10×13″ for a standard format this time – fits in my lighter weight mid-sized bag and makes a 9×12″ original, which is a nice size for framing). And I’ve just been listening to advice from photojournalists who say ‘bring a full duplicate set of all important gear in case of loss/theft/etc’. So I’m doubling or tripling up on tubes and need to purchase a backup set of brushes to go into the suitcase. (That’s going to be a big investment).

Some news from online: Roseann Hanson of Arizona showed us this great idea (over in the Craftsy Travel Sketching class message board). She’s invented a DIY magnetic quick release for her drawing easel. Brilliant! Much quicker to set up than the threaded items you might have on a standard tripod. Read about her plein air setup and her very interesting life over on her blog The Constant Apprentice.

Leslie Fehling_LapDesk (1)

Here’s another brilliant invention/adaptation. Leslie Fehling of Prosperity PA is using the drop-in magnet trick for her water jar, but has another smart tip – use a drill bit gauge (Velcro’ed on here) for her brush holder. Pretty smart! Something to pick up at the local hardware store. Read the details of her compact lap-desk over on her blog: Everyday Artist.

Ok – that’s it for news from the studio – back to planning for Portugal! Hope I get some warmer weather soon to begin training in earnest.


10 Comments leave one →
  1. eu51 permalink
    January 29, 2016 2:48 PM


  2. Anne-Laure permalink
    January 30, 2016 9:01 AM

    Thank you so much for the news and the clever sketching gear ideas!
    I am currently working on a folding board for my bigger sketchbook, with magnets on it and so on (my palette is a metallic box) but I didn’t know exactly how to handle my brushes…. I think I will try this hole sidea soon!! :D My hubby even told me : what if you made holes straight in the coroplast board?! :)
    Marc, do you have sometimes problems, because of the wind, with you board? Or are you always working with a tripod?
    I was painting yesterday in a place not so windy (just a bit) and I figured out that the board had a way bigger wind resistance than my small sketchbook and moved a lot (the wind pushed it towards me). It usually is not a problem for me to sketch standing, holding my stuff, but do you have some tips to share not to have some issues because of the wind? (I already use clips to hold the sketchbook pages)
    We could have some wind in Portugal, near the sea…
    BTW, I am pretty sure I am agree with the comment above, even if I don’t understand it all. ;)

    • January 30, 2016 10:21 AM

      Hey A~L – yes – the wind is always a factor :) I have had my easel blow over entirely in the past. Flip right over like an umbrella. If it’s a gale force wind I hang my backpack off a little hook in the center of my tripod – for extra weight to hold it down. (Not every model has this built-in hook, you can just use a short bit of rope and a carabiner). Old time painters used to carry an empty sack, and fill it with rocks and dirt when they got on location. Only works for landscape painters :) Not so useful in the city. If it’s just strong wind or gusty, I have learned to paint with one hand on the board at all times. If it’s just moderate wind, then everything being clipped down handles the breeze.

  3. Margaret Hunt permalink
    January 31, 2016 12:25 PM

    Curious question. Are the prices for single sketcher and shared room backwards?! Usually a shared room is cheaper??

    • January 31, 2016 1:07 PM

      Hey Margaret – (About the India trip) that Single Supp. stands for ‘Supplement’ – that means it’s an additional fee to stay in a private room on top of the ‘twin/shared’ price. These prices do reflect all the transport and some meals for getting us around over there. Thanks!

      • Margaret Hunt permalink
        January 31, 2016 1:08 PM

        Ah! Thanks for the clarification!

  4. February 10, 2016 4:00 AM

    Hi Mark! Thank you for this post. It inspired me to make my own lightweight tripod easel. Check my blog if you are interest:

    • February 11, 2016 11:59 AM

      Excellent! And looks like you are getting out to some great painting spots :)

  5. Anne-Laure permalink
    February 21, 2016 1:18 PM

    Hi Marc,

    I was thinking again of what you said here on the website and in the email for the Portugal workshop about travelling with watercolor tubes and other gear (risk of loss, problem in the cabine luggage)…
    And I have just found some information about it. The document is in French and especially for Europe travel but I thought it would be useful to share it. There are pics in it too. ;)

    The document seems to say that things like bottles, tubes and so on can be kept in the cabin luggage in a unique closed plastic bag (like there zip freezing bag) of a size of 20 cm x 20 cm max. The document don’t talk about paint tubes but I think it works for us too. :)
    It means we can travel with some back up watercolor tubes in our cabine luggage (in the zip plastic bag), for the case our suitcase is lost :( or something like that.

    The bag can contain water bottles too, with less than 100 mL of water in each.
    The whole content of the plastic bag can’t contain more than 1000 mL of products.

    I am going to send this information to Nancy too. :)

    (Once again, sorry for my English !…
    BTW, thanks for your advices. I think I really love Naples Yellow, Goethite, Perylene Green, Indigo… ;) )

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: