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FRANCE - Impressions of Provence, A Beginner's 

Watercolor Workshop with JOHN KEELING

Dates: 2023

Medium: Watercolor painting

Price: TBD

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Our instructor John Keeling has always been drawn to the transparency of watercolor.  Its elusive and unpredictable nature makes it both a challenge and a delight for him. With watercolor, he is able to capture the essence of his subject... the fragility of a flower or the devoted gaze of a beloved pet.

He is a painter, but he begins each piece by drawing.  Using pencil or ink, he learns to see each subject before he begins to paint.  Once he has a likeness established through drawing, he is set free to paint with spontaneity and joy.

He enjoys teaching watercolor to all ages and skill levels, from private lessons with children to a group of 80-somethings at a local senior living community.  Read more about John in About Us.



This watercolor workshop in beautiful Provence has been designed with the Absolute Beginner in mind. Our instructor, John Keeling, will tailor the workshop toward those students who have never painted before but want to explore the exciting world of watercolor. John is an award-winning artist and formerly a Creative Director with Hallmark Cards.  He currently balances a fulfilling freelance career of painting custom pet portraits, licensing his work for products, illustrating children’s books, and teaching. His teaching style is very affirming and hands on, with plenty of one-on-one instruction and feedback.

​The medium of watercolor can be challenging and has a reputation for not being as “forgiving” as other mediums – but by learning the basic techniques early on, students will be able to avoid making many of the mistakes that beginners often do. You will be watching daily demonstrations, learning many basic techniques, practicing what you have learned on location in the small villages in the Luberon region of Provence, and enjoying the camaraderie with fellow beginner painters!  All in a magical setting, rich with history and the fragrance of lavender.

​John visited Provence for the first time in 2019, immediately fell in love with the place, and is now excited to be returning and sharing his love of painting and Provence with you!



Tour: Impressions of Provence, A Beginner's Watercolor Workshop, St Remy de Provence

Dates: 2023 

Teacher: John Keeling

Lodging: TBD 

Closest airport: Marseilles

Price: TBD

Price includes

6 night lodging in shared double room

6 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners

Wine with dinner

5 days art instruction

All excursions, museum entrances

and other programs during the week.

All local transportation including pick

up at the airport in Marseilles.

Single supplement: TBD

Not included:

Airline tickets

Transportation to and from your departure airport

Any pre-tour hotel costs

Travel insurance

Meals not listed above


St Remy is one of the prettiest towns in Provence and is circled by the remnants of a Medieval wall. Most of the town is pedestrianized, and as you walk on the cobblestone streets you will see amazing old fountains, beautiful plazas, Medieval buildings, chapels and delightful coffeeshops and restaurants as well as upscale boutiques.


The town is located in the Alpilles mountains, and is surrounded by abundant, perfumed valleys, fields of wheat, wildflowers, olive trees and cypresses.


The beauty of this town and the surrounding landscape has inspired many artists, writers, and painters through the ages. The most famous is, of course, Vincent Van Gogh, who painted over 100 art works of the town and the surrounding area, among them Starry Night.


Hotel: Three-star hotel in St Remy de Provence

John's St Remy de Provence art below:

Impressions of Provence

"Iris Days and Starry Nights"

Itinerary for our week in St Remy


Arrival Day 

  • We will meet you at the Marseilles airport to go to our hotel

  • Welcome dinner

  • Meet fellow students, teacher and staff

  • Presentation of the week

Painting Days

  • Breakfast

  • Excursions to our paint out locations, among them:

    • St Remy de Provence, our home base, a charming town with a lively market. Here we will visit several of the places where Van Gogh lived and worked

    • Arles, once a Roman capital, with many remnants of that era, including the imposing Arles Amphitheatre

    • Les Baux de Provence, one of the most beautiful villages in France, situated on a rocky hilltop with an extensive chateau on top

    • Carrieres de Lumieres, a unique art-based multimedia show set in old quarries

    • Avignon, with its magnificent Palace of the Popes and the famous medieval bridge Pont d’Avignon, once part of the pilgrimage route between Spain and Italy, now a UNESCO World Heritage site

  • Each morning will start with a painting demo by John

  • Every afternoon we will meet for a critique back at the hotel

  • Three scrumptious 3-course dinners are included! (And picnic lunches are included almost every day)


Departure day After breakfast we will say our farewells and coordinate transfers to the Marseilles airport


                                                       We reserve the right to change the itinerary if needed.

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