best holiday gift ever: painting holiday in italy

I’ve raved about Julian and Amanda‘s blog A Tuscan View – From Umbria here, but that was before they had a fabulous video to show you exactly why you should reserve your (or your loved one’s) spot on one of their painting holidays or art workshops “in the inspiring Tuscan and Umbrian countryside.”

Seriously, watch this four and a half minute video, drink in the gorgeous views and words of Julian, and then tell me you don’t have the urge to get on a plane or train with a pencil and drawing pad in hand:

Artist in Italy is offering painting holidays and art workshops for people who love art, Italy, good food and wine. The week-long painting and drawing courses include photography and some basic printmaking.”

Now booking courses for April and May 2009.

Feel free to spread the word to all your artistic friends!

Now excuse me while I watch that video over and over and wonder why I haven’t made it to Tuscany or Umbria yet. And also why I haven’t picked up a drawing pencil in years and haven’t taken any formal painting lessons either. Hmm….

Have you been to or lived in Tuscany or Umbria?
What are your *must-sees*?

22 Beans of Wisdom to “best holiday gift ever: painting holiday in italy”
  1. Gil

    Julian has a pretty neat video. Too much climbing for me to be enticed to go.

    Aw come on Gil…there’s great wine as a reward 😉

  2. That video is great.

    I makes me want to pick up a pencil and start drawing. Too bad I haven’t drawn since my graphic arts class sophomore year in high school.

    Regarding Tuscany/Umbria, Florence (in the off season if possible), Siena and Orvieto are must sees.

    On my list for Spring are Lucca and a few hill towns.

    nyc/caribbean ragazza’s last blog post..Twilight, Mamma Mia and Sex And The City and Wanted.

    Photos photos photos!!!!!

  3. I think this is why Umbria/Tuscany should be at the top of our list for our annual girls’ weekend next year! Thanks for sharing!

    Cherrye at My Bella Vita’s last blog post..Basilico Italiano: You Just Can’t Cook Without It

    Loving this thinking, Cherrye….

  4. 11.24.2008

    Wow, just gorgeous … breathtaking …

    What a wonderful way to get away for a few days and relax.

    And to do what you love most for a living – it just doesn’t get any better than that. 🙂

    Thanks for sharing, Michelle!

    Rosa’s last blog post..PART TWO: Mushroom and Mascarpone Ravioli (made with Homemade Pasta)

    Glad you enjoyed Rosa 🙂

  5. 11.24.2008

    I don’t know to draw at all, but i would love to have a holiday here.
    Now where is my ticket to go there 🙂

    If only travel were free!

  6. 11.24.2008

    And let’s face it, Julian is not hard to look at. As a member of the club of women who have cute partners, Amanda, your application form is on the way. I think this video is wonderfully enticing, and even as a person who tends not to gravitate towards heavily toured cities, I wanted to jump on the next pullman and head down to Florence. Seriously, these people totally have it going on. They are presenting something that feels REAL and LOVING and AUTHENTIC. They are clearly putting heart and soul into it. As one who knows what it takes, I completely applaud their effort and celebrate their success.

    Couldn’t agree more Diana; the passion for both art and Italy really come through here, and that’s what makes it so darn good.

  7. Joanne at frutto della passione

    Tuscany and Umbria are favourite vacation spots for us and I have an aunt that takes painting vacations so I’m going to send her the link!

    Joanne at frutto della passione’s last blog post..File these under *WHAT WAS I THINKING?*

    Great Joanne! Thank you on behalf of Amanda and Julian 🙂

  8. 11.24.2008

    ~If this doesn”t make you want to come to Italy and take their course, nothing will. Nice find `Michelle.

    Marla’s last blog post..Tortelloni di Mele

    I knew I had to share it when I saw it; glad you enjoyed Marla 🙂

  9. Wow! Michelle, what can we say? Have you ever considered a job in PR? This is amazing, thank you so much and thanks to everyone for the encouragement and kind comments.

    Hey Diana, did you see my butcher in the video he’s hot too?! Is there club for women who have cute butchers??

    amanda@A Tuscan View…’s last blog post..Casual obsession

    It’s truly my pleasure, Amanda! When I saw that video I was so ready to come up there!

    And hee hee…the butcher *was* cute 🙂

  10. 11.24.2008

    Been to Tuscany, fell in love, want to move there.

    Pretty much sums it up, don’tcha think 😉

    My Melange’s last blog post..All Roads Lead to Rome?

    Yes, yes I believe it does, Robin 🙂

  11. 11.24.2008

    Oh… as trite as this sounds… everything.

    BTW… why don’t you have Writer in Calabria workshops? I’d go!

    jen of a2eatwrite’s last blog post..What’s Cooking Wednesday: Easiest (and BEST) Chicken-Noodle-Whatever Soup

    Hmm…that’s a fabulous idea, Jen….

  12. 11.24.2008

    What a wonderful video- I am not a painter- but I do love to take photographs.
    I would love to go there just to enjoy the gorgeous area and get to know Julian and Mandy!
    I would love to meet Tartufo too!
    Maybe one day! I’ll keep praying!

    susan’s last blog post..Pulse Kick N’ Go Nitrous Scooter Giveaway

    Does look like a wonderful place to play, doesn’t it Susan?

  13. 11.24.2008

    yeah i travel there thru you, my friend. sign me up for some classes! i think im going to gift my whole family with art classes… how fun! Enjoy for me!

    Bren, you need to get back here….

  14. 11.24.2008

    Is it just me or do those prices actually seem accessible? Having watched the video, I must say that Julian has a perfectly seductive voice/accent — seductive in the French sense, in which one always seeks to seduce one’s conversational partner or a teacher, her class — that is, to draw them in and interest them.

    I want to know more about Mandy! I thought she would be described in the ‘non-painter’ section. As far as I could tell, even the dog got more press than she did!!

    It seems like a delightful place to go for a week. I’ve no artistic talent at all, I wonder if beginners could really enjoy it?

    Thanks for sharing!

    Kim B.’s last blog post..Funny & shiny

    Hah, you’ll just have to keep reading over at their place for more and more info 😉

  15. 11.24.2008

    What a dream! I can’t draw to save my life but I’m tempted to try now. Especially in that setting. I’ve been to Umbria and Tuscany. I used to make it to Tuscany at least once a year but now that we have kids were it’s been more difficult. We usually stay at a very cheap but friendly place near Roccastrada (GR). It’s a great location as it’s in between the sea (Isola d’Elba) and the province of Siena. One village I particularly love is Montepescali. It’s a medieval town perched on a hill with a great trattoria and excellent views of the countryside.

    Milanese Masala’s last blog post..Cucina confidential

    Ooh will have to remember that town for when Cherrye and I are up there…yes, we’ll get there sooner or later!

  16. Well, as you know I am a bit of a reverse snob about Italia settentrionale… but that being said, I fell in love with Assisi when I was there in my teens. In many ways it will always be the prototypical Italian borgo, and I just adored the light, the narrow streets, the churches…. sigh.

    Who am I kidding, I’m an Italophile through and through. I’d even take Milanese fog and pollution right now.


    paul of the clue-by-four’s last blog post..Caturday special: the semiotics of LOLcats

    Hee hee…I hear you. And now I see the title of your post. I’m a comin!

  17. Lizzie

    Looks sooooo beautiful, I dream of living in Florence one day. I love the Tuscan countryside, the medieval villages, the colours, the light, the hillsides dotted with cypress trees (SIGH). Makes my commute to the City even more painful and wretched. Will tell my friend who loves print making and is learning Italian.

    Thanks for passing along the word, Lizzie! And hopefully you can come back for at least a visit soon 🙂

  18. 11.24.2008

    Thanks so much for sharing that video. so well done and brought me right back to my semester in Florence studying art!

    Eryn’s last blog post..We’re slaves to our house!

    Glad you enjoyed it Eryn!

  19. 11.24.2008

    As a regular reader of A Tuscan View – From Umbria; I always enjoy the posts and photos. The video was fantastic, Italy needs to hire Julian and his video friend to make videos of all over Italy. That would definately help tourism.

    My favorites places in Tuscany: City – Firenze; Town – Lucca.

    I wonder if Amanda’s butcher is single, will need to hop over to her site and ask. :o)

    Ice Tea For Me’s last blog post..checking the ads

    I agree…Julian is a *star* 😉

    Too funny that the butcher is getting so much love….

  20. 11.25.2008

    Looks absolutely wonderful! Might have to try that next year – which I hope will be our year of experiential travel!

    Just catching up on you – we’re on the road in outback Australia working on some books and stories – and before that so busy with the Italy books – it’s wonderful to see what you’ve been up to, and what you’re going to be up to!

    lara dunston’s last blog post..The Ghan: nothing like the romance of train travel to rekindle a love for travel

    Ciao Lara! Great to “see” you…and what a great idea for a year of experiential travel. Can’t wait to read about it!

  21. 12.01.2008

    Oh… My… God. I am en route, as soon as I have the green light from those who think they know best.

    That’s incredible!! Thank you so much for sharing that. WOW!

    (tapping foot)

    I will get there as soon as I am able…. (sigh…) hopefully sooner than later!


    Grazie Mille!!

    Scarlett & Viaggiatore

    Wanderlust Scarlett’s last blog post..Light Up The Turkey!

    Wouldn’t *that* be a great place for us to finally meet in person?

    And now…what’s this about lighting a turkey? Hmm……

  22. 02.20.2010

    Love the video!! I’ve been to several places in Tuscany, but I’ve never been to Umbria. Of course, when in Tuscany, you should always see the main attractions – Florence, Siena, etc, but I recommend taking time to go to one of those not so popular destinations. I recommend seeing Cortona, which is an ancient Etruscan city state.

    Glad you enjoyed!

    .-= PassagetoItaly´s last blog ..Recipe of the Month: Il Stufato di Vitello e Verdure =-.

Michelle KaminskyMichelle Kaminsky is an American attorney-turned-freelance writer who lived in her family's ancestral village in Calabria, Italy for 15 years. This blog is now archived. 

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