Wednesday, December 27, 2017

French Art School goes to The French Riviera



No previous experience necessary

Villa Rothschild de Ephrussi at Cap de Ferrat
Photo T Arden
Why paint and tour in Nice and the Limousin?

 The light and sparkling colours of the Cote D'Azur inspired many artists from Pierre Bonnard to Henri Matisse. Enjoy a creative reboot and inspirational holiday with a difference.

Studying their paintings it's easy to see the common thread of joy coursing rhythmically through the works. Matisse goes to the extreme with colour whilst Bonnard finds incredible beauty and decoratif motifs in the everyday. How do they make everyday life so beautiful? They certainly create the belle vie and alongside that fluid and confident painting techniques support their vision that life is truly extraordinarily beautiful and uplifting.

We can all benefit from understanding how they do this and capturing a little of their magic for ourselves in our own work, whether we have painted before or not. All against the backdrop of the most charming parts of France full of inspiration.

The true magic is that we have the opportunity to paint AND tour as we have our own fully equipped painting studio in which to explore and create. Return home with at least ten artworks on canvas and thick luscious art papers.

I am told that my previous French Art Schools are life changing experiences. Google You tube French Art School to hear client previous comments! And thanks to those gorgeous clients for supplying your feedback which helps others understand what the tours are like.


Join me on this fabulous bespoke small group art tour from Nice on the French Riviera, a point of inspiration for artists including Matisse, Chagall, Bonnard and Renoir, then on to the Creuse Region of the Limousin where the French Impressionists loved to paint including Monet.

En route we enjoy picturesque Provence and Lyon.

What does French Art School The Riviera and Limousin, cover off creatively for art classes?

No previous experience necessary to get great results from the following;

  • We have 8 half day in studio sessions ( some are two sessions in one day in the studio) working in oils for life, acrylics and other mediums.
  •  2 en plein air half days with with oils on canvas painting sessions in the stunning Creuse. Experience painting in oils en plein air where Monet painted!
  • 2 en plein air sketching experiences.
  • 4 stunning floral opportunities to for floral photographic sessions using your smartphone or tablet. I will show you how I create mine
  • Experience ink and brushwork a la Matisse plus learn a vibrant palette and colour combinations. Paint several paintings with line and colour.
  • Learn the secret to Pierre Bonnards use of light on form in his paintings and then try it for yourself in several paintings on canvas painted from life. Learn the colour combinations that create the decorative and pretty style of the Nabis who followed on from Post Impressionism
  • Learn to paint with a pencil session.

  • Experience the fabulously fluid techniques that free you up to paint like an Impressionist

  • Live like a French person  and fall in love with the French culture.
  • Holiday with like minded others who love beautiful places and things, and art.
  • Visit specialised collections of Impressionist and Post Impressionist art
  • Start your inspiration before you leave home with my French Art School Cultural e-lessons
  • Visit exquisite French gardens & chateaux and feel your inspiration brimming over!
  • Visit Cezanne's painting atelier in Aix-en-Provence
  • Visit the Bonnard Museum and the Matisse Museum in the Riviera
  • Visit many practising contemporary art studios and galleries in Vence and Saint Paul de Vence.

If that sounds like you then you had better let me know quickly as this is a small group only and a one off tour.

Best of all no cooking because we have a private cook in the Limousin section of the tour so we are free to create in the studio.


The Riviera, also known as the Cote D'Azure, is on the Mediterranean coast of Southeastern France. It includes famous and glamorous locations such as Saint Tropez and Cannes, and the independent micro state of Monaco.

It started out as a winter escape destination for those seeking better health in a resort environment. In the mid 19th century  the rich and the royal came to holiday and have villas in the region. By the first half of the 20th century the Riviera was frequented by artists and writers including Picasso, Matisse, Bonnard, Somerset Maugham and Edith Wharton. In the second half of the 20th century places such as Saint Tropez and Cannes have been the backdrop for celebrities and the jetset.

A vintage poster advertising Nice as an exotic  holiday destination

And now French Art School is going to spend some time soaking up the colours and the famous light of Nice, examining and learning from the work of Matisse, Bonnard and others to then draw upon that inspiration to paint in the French Art School Studio in the Limousin!

Sketch in a sumptuous Mediterranean garden and villa, explore French rose gardens and add to your floral photo collection, explore historic chateaux, visit the perfume town of Grasse, the old town of Lyon for art and stunning rose gardens then make yourself at home in the very natural and beautiful Creuse region of the Limousin at my French villas and painting studio where we will paint in the very locations where the French impressionists themselves painted.

Gardens at the Villa Euphressi de Rothschild 

This is true art immersion and you deserve it! Numbers are limited and it’s a one off tour! So once the places are gone they are gone. I have space for maximum of 10 guests, myself and an assistant. Bookings are now open for this land package.


DAY 1 June 4 MONDAY, 2018

We meet at 3.15 pm  after check-in at our accommodation the Hotel de Villa Nice Victor Hugo, ideally located in the centre of Nice, near the ocean and a short walk to the old town of Nice and plenty of cafes and restaurants. Its the perfect blend of old world charm and modern convenience.

Hotel La Villa Nice Victor Hugo a short stroll to the beach and all the best restaurants and cafes
Photo from the hotel 

Our hotel is 8 km from Nice airport and ten minutes from the Nice train station.

Musee Matisse is a treasure trove of inspiration
Photo T Arden

A Matisse painting with a view to the Mediterranean Sea

We start with a visit to Musee Matisse to enjoy Matisse's bright colours and confident lines.

Double Delight Sunflowers foretell the colours of a French Summer
Photo by Jacqueline Coates
We enjoy a view of the Baie des Anges, explore The Old Town or the Vielle Ville, a delightful maze of narrow streets chock full of personality -laden eateries, galleries and shops and cafes, then let’s have an early dinner together (own expense) in one of the many fabulous local restaurants we can choose from. 

Bouillabaise or a Salade Nicoise anyone?

In just a few confident strokes, Matisse captures the essence
of a beautiful woman. Less can be so much more

DAY 2 June 5 TUESDAY, 2018

We start the day with the Nice Flower markets collecting fab photo reference to paint from later and take in the historic Garibaldi Place before heading out by taxi to Cap du Ferrat to see the Villa and Gardens of Ephrussi de Rothschild, where we will enjoy the villa, the art and the fabulous Mediterranean gardens.

Let me show you some Impressionist techniques we can apply
to our subject matter at the studio in Limousin
Artwork and photo by Jacqueline Coates

We will take lunch at the café ( included ) and then  draw en plein air and capture some photos to work from at our painting studio in the Limousin.

Villa garden shots by T Arden

The Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild overlooks the bay of Villefranche.
After a walk by the water, perhaps an aperitif at a bar or hotel before returning to Nice? Dinner own arrangements. Choose from the many options near our hotel.

Photo T Arden

DAY 3 June 6 WEDNESDAY, 2018

This morning our driver takes us touring starting with Vence, a medieval hilltop town between the sea and the Maritime Alps of the Riviera where Matisse created the incredibly beautiful stained glass windows from his simple drawings at La Chapelle du Rosaire de Vence. 

The Maritime Alps are an important part of the French Riviera,
and host to centuries old
hilltop towns with many artists and galleries
Photo by T Arden

There are five gateways into the town, and inside the walls, terraces and cafes. Today the town is full of working artists and sculptors. There are lots of charming galleries and art studios to visit. Vence inspired Chagall, Matisse, Dubuffet, and Soutine.

Explore the narrow alleyways lined with galleries and boutiques!
Photo by T.Arden
Vence has its own clear mineral water supply from a source just above the village called La Foux, available to the villagers through the fountains. As we are visiting in the morning we are likely to be in time for the antique and book market in the Place du Grand Jardin.  Lunch own arrangements. Choose one of the charming cafes or restaurants .Perhaps sketch from the café!

Saint Paul de Vence cafe.
Photo by T Arden

The stunning view from a hilltop town of the Maritime Alps.
 Photo by T Arden

After lunch we visit Saint Paul de Vence, one the oldest medieval towns on the French Riviera. St Paul de Vence, noted for its atmosphere, landscapes and clear light, influenced many artists including Henri Matisse, and Marc Chagall.

A contemporary artist's work in Saint Paul de Vence,
a hill top town of the Riviera overflowing with talented artists such as this.
Enjoy visiting the studios and meeting the artists. Photo by T Arden 

The walls that raise the perched village were built in the 15th century. Explore the Rue Grande and it’s alleyways, the artist studios and galleries. Take in the fabulous trademark views of Provence. Sketch from the terrace and take home a beautiful drawing in pen and ink with an art lesson from Jac.

Swoonworthy Villa of the Saint Paul de Vence
Photo by T Arden

A stunning vintage linen find in a Brocante
Photo Jacqueline Coates

After a superb day, enjoy a beautiful relaxing evening in Nice. Walk the promenade. Explore the many attractions nearby on foot. Dinner at leisure, own arrangements or make a group.

DAY 4 June 7 THURSDAY, 2018


Learn how the perfume has been made for centuries
at the perfume capital of the world, Grasse, turning roses into heady perfume

Today we make a delightful transition from Nice to Lyon with several inspirational visits along the way beginning with the Musee Bonnard at Le Cannet.

Pierre Bonnard was a painter and print maker, and a founding member of the Post-Impressionist group of avant-garde painters called Les Nabis. His paintings are full of gorgeous colour and charm as he painted his domestic life and experiences around him in Southern France. Bonnard has a particular way with bringing a simple subject matter to life by capturing certain lighting situations which we will learn about and do our own versions of in the french Art School sessions. Once I show you it will be an aha moment.

The Musee Bonnard itself is in a stunning Belle Epoque mansion.  

Perfumes at Fragonard, Grasse
T Arden photography

We then continue on to Grasse, a picturesque medieval village that also holds the distinction of being the world’s perfume capital. We will take a tour of the Fragonard perfumery and take in the never-ending fields of lavender that surround the area’s hilly landscape. Enjoy a visit to Fragonard perfume factory, learn how perfume is made, then enjoy sampling the perfumes.

Photography Jacqueline Coates

 What b
etter place to celebrate the rose than in Grasse where the perfume of the rose is so artfully captured?
Picnic Lunch supplied before continuing to Provence via Aix en Provence where we will enjoy a visit to the preserved studio of Cezanne, and then onto Avignon on the Rhone River, once the seat of Catholic popes in the 14th century.

Let’s take a walk on foot to see the historic centre of Avignon including the Palais des Papes, the cathedral and the famous Pont d’Avignon, today being the remains of the arches of a bridge built in the 12th century spanning the Rhone.
Snacks and drinks supplied for our tour and transit day.
Lyon is  fabulous town filled with treasures. Here is a vintage postcard with an aerial
 view showing the rivers Saone and Rhone which create the Presqu'ile, a peninsula, which has the old parts of the town and France's third largest public square, the Place Bellecour. Our hotel is on the Presqu'ile close to everything.

We then continue till we arrive to our comfortable hotel for an overnight stay in Lyon, which is well located to explore the old town of Lyon. Dinner own arrangements. Let’s explore the city on foot and find a charming restaurant for dinner.

DAY 5 June 8 FRIDAY, 2018

LYON – Chateau de la Chaize  –La Foret Du Temple

Original Lyon Roses card image courtesy
of Graphics Fairy

This morning visit the Grande Roseraie Du Parc de la Tete D’OR ,  a grand park opened in 1857 with an area of 117 hectares and within it The International Rose Garden of Lyon with 350 varieties of roses. It's the perfect time to enjoy the roses so let's get amongst it!

After smelling the roses, visit the Museum of Fine Arts of Lyon, housed in a former Benedictine Convent specifically to see the 19 and 20th century collections featuring Impressionist and Post Impressionist artists such as Degas, Manet, Morisot, Cezanne, Gauguin, Van Gogh, Bonnard, Matisse, Picasso, and Vuillard.
Picnic lunch supplied, snacks and drinks supplied.

A vintage postcard shows the Parc de La Tete D'Or which also has the magnificent collection of roses
Image treasure hunted by J Coates and adjusted by Peter Will

We then continue our journey with a special visit to Odenas in the Rhone- Alpes where we discover the Chateau de La Chaize with its stunning gardens based on the designs of La Notre. Tour the formal gardens and chateau, and enjoy a wine tasting of the estate’s famous Beaujolais.

This beautiful photo from the website for Chateau de La Chaize

Timeless Oak features in the Limousin
We then continue to the charming hamlet of La Foret Du temple, our French home base for the rest of the tour.

La Foret du Temple is located in the region of the Creuse in the Limousin, an area rich with natural assets including scenic rivers, lakes, and forests of hazelnuts, chestnuts and walnuts, fields edged with hedgerow, natural wildlife including falcons, hedgehogs and wild deer and charming market towns. There is lots to explore and paint.

Picnic lunch and drinks and snacks provided.

We will be welcomed by our chef with aperitifs and a welcome dinner.

At La Foret du Temple settle into your accommodation and own . Enjoy being at home in the French countryside.

This painting was created by Christine Taylor from the local landscape.
 Christine was new to painting when she joined us and produced some beautiful work

The two accommodations are very near each other so you are in walking distance at all times of a few minutes no matter which charming villa you stay in.  Welcome to La Foret du Temple! I am so pleased to have you stay and look forward to making this an unforgettable and inspirational holiday.

Welcome to our two traditional accommodations L’Hirondelle & La Tonnellerie

L'Hirondelle is named for the swallow that returns in spring. It was once an auberge.
 My neighbours were married there over 50 years ago.

L’Hirondelle is a charming home and French villa with a painting atelier just for French Art School, named for the swallow, which once upon a time an auberge or local inn, and one of three restaurants in the town.
Today it is a comfortable art filled typically French home offering spacious reception rooms downstairs, whilst upstairs has 5 bedrooms and two bathrooms.

Gorgeous linen feature throughout the accommodations
Photography of villas by Jacqueline Coates
One of the bedrooms at L'Hirondelle. 
Peonies, Roses, hydrangeas and lilacs all grow in abundance in la Foret du Temple
making great subject matter for painting.

La Tonnellerie was for a long time the home of a local barrel maker until an English couple took over the property and made it home for eleven years opening up the enormous attic to more rooms and revealing the stone of the villa, and cultivating a gorgeous garden. 
Lots of original art features throughout the accommodations

La Tonnellerie is a few minutes walk from L'hirondelle in the same charming hamlet.

La Tonnellerie has an orchard and lots of lovely places to enjoy the sunshine, and a fabulous grange that is in the process of being turned into an additional painting studio. Theproperties are within minutes walk of each other  in the centre of a tiny pretty village with multiple accesses and pathways onto open countryside with beautiful walks in nature. Enjoy woods of hazelnut, walnut, oak, chestnuts, and running streams.
Charolais cows live the peaceful existence around and in La Foret Du Temple

Meander along quiet winding back roads with breathtaking views across hedge rowed fields and farming lands, ideal for drawing and painting.  Connect with yourself and nature, in this peaceful and inspiring setting, yet enjoy modern conveniences in a traditional French setting such as free wifi, access all TV channels, and kitchen mod cons to make your stay comfortable and convenient. You can phone Australia for free from the landline.  There are bicycles available for your usage.

Fall in love with the charming country life a la francaise!
Photo Jacqueline Coates
Some painting examples from class time
Photo Jacqueline Coates

Catering; All of your Limousin meals for breakfast lunches and dinners apart from a restaurant we will go to one night and a pub after painting are included in the Limousin.
Most lunches and tour picnics are included, and an at home evening bar is generously stocked with aperitifs and wines and champagne for your during your stay at La Foret du Temple  till they run out! We usually have some left over. Depends on the group!

Our own painting studio; I have already set up the studio complete with travelling French box easels and studio easels, boards, paints and brushes, and day backpacks and lightweight camping stools. We will be working with portable watercolour palettes, yours to keep (don’t worry I will show you how) and painting on boards for fast techniques we can also get out touring as well as produce successful works you can take home.  There are individual rooms for the guests. Downstairs at L’Hirondelle, the old ballroom makes the perfect spacious painting studio.  At La Tonnellerie there are four single rooms plus and creative options for our art. 

An example from an autumn class as we paint the market produce

Warm up in the studio

DAY 6 June 9 SATURDAY, 2018
A relaxing day settling into our home and studio. In the afternoon we start our first art lesson.

Explore the local area with a leisurely walk in the village and nearby forests and pathways of La Foret, our new base. We will gather local wildflowers and seeds to create an artwork with a difference in a morning session and capture it with photography.

Morning tea at L’Hirondelle.  Morning tea is a ‘Clafoutis’, a specialty of the area, served with cream.  
We settle into the ballroom studio for our first in studio painting session. We will be employing some techniques I will show you used by the Impressionists painters as well as some tips on how to manage your paint.
Student piece on art paper

Lunch served.  Afternoon paint session painting in the productive style incorporating some of the Impressionistic techniques I will show you. Create some pieces you will love on luscious thick art paper from Paris. No previous experience necessary. Dinner prepared by our chef.

DAY 7 June 10 SUNDAY, 2018
This morning we visit Crozant, where the Impressionists painters hung out together and stayed at the Hotel de L’Epinat. Crozant is famous for its ruined castle that the Impressionists used to paint frequently as a motif of the area. 

The ruins of Crozant, a motif for the French impressionist painters who loved romantic landscapes.
Photo Jacqueline Coates
French Impressionist painting of the Ruins of Crozant

Then walk the path to where the Monet trail begins by the river Creuse enjoying the scenery that Monet painted.  We enjoy an en plein air painting session in oils,  Impressionist style and a picnic. Afterwards we drive to the Art Museum of Gueret and see the original paintings by local French Impressionist artists. Then home for dinner prepared by our chef.
Entry to Gueret Museum which has a fine collection of the
 Impressionists paintings from the region
Photo Jacqueline Coates

Painting en Plein Air where Monet once painted is a thrill

DAY 8 June 11 MONDAY, 2018
After breakfast, we will paint produce using live local floral reference,  capturing their beauty with oil paints.

The local hydrangeas come in a range of brilliant colours from deep ruby to turquoise
Photo Jacqueline Coates

After lunch we visit La Celle Dunoise and sketch the beautiful village and waterways using some of the effective style and approaches we have been looking at in collections from southern France featuring Impressionism and post impressionism. I will show you how to look at the landscape and interpret it for effective and stunning paintings. Lots of demos . Learn how to capture the colours. Enjoy afternoon tea en plein air including delicious pastries.

Create and breathe in the wonderful landscape. Live like an Impressionist!
I will demo how to easily capture what is in front of us and you will follow suit using an unusual array of painting tools. I am on hand to assist you with your paintings. Clean up on site and join me for a drink at the Auberge des Pesceurs. Dinner own arrangements from the menu at the Auberge ( very reasonable).

DAY 9 June 12 TUESDAY, 2018

Guided morning session in the studio painting. Today’s theme draws on the inspiration we have experienced in the Riviera from stunning Mediterranean gardens to coastal views and other landscapes.We also look at the artists techniques we have been viewing.
A painting by Pierre Bonnard masterfully captures the backlight of an every day domestic scene

Let me show you some easy techniques to bag some beautiful artworks featuring the lyrical colour palette of Nice!
Lunch today includes a cooking lesson as our meal is prepared by local Frenchwoman Anne.
Anne who gives us a french cooking lesson and the true taste of France 

Draw upon the inspiration we experienced in the Riviera including the stunning Mediterranean gardens and coastal scenes. I will show you how as I feature the styles of Monet and other artists who visited the area and painted the stunning villas and gardens of the Riviera.
Let me show you some fun and easy techniques to capture the colour and breeziness of the area drawing on colourful  Post impressionist style. Dinner prepared by the chef.

A painting by Bonnard who was the leader of the Nabis movement

DAY 10 June 13 WEDNESDAY, 2018
A full day out visiting Limoges starting with the Musee des Beaux Arts specifically to enjoy the Suzanne Valadon paintings.

Paintings and details of paintings by Suzanne Valadon

The paintings of Suzanne Valadon featuring florals

Suzanne was a model muse to the impressionist painters before becoming an artist herself.
We visit the stunning Cathedral Saint Etienne with it’s medicinal gardens overlooking the river and the pilgrims trail. Enjoy the stained glass rose window and the tranquillity & atmosphere
We make our way down the terraced gardens to the Royal Limoges Factory where there are wonderfully priced porcelain bargains.
Then I will take you to my favourite Brocante in a rambling mill by the river where you can pick up AMAZING bargain prices for vintage linen sheets, vintage porcelain, chandeliers, candelabras, vases and more. Make sure you have room in your bags!
A picnic is supplied by our chef during the day tour.

At home, a beautiful meal prepared by our chef awaits us.

DAY 11 June 14 THURSDAY, 2018
A relaxing painting day at La Foret Du Temple;
We continue to follow the style of the Post Impressionists and work up paintings from our tour in the south.

I will continue to expand your range of approaches for fluid art creation.!
Or simply spend some time relaxing, reading or walking. We have bicycles if you fancy a bike ride down a country lane. Capture a picture of the gorgeous and curious Charolais and Limousin cows.
Work in progress of a fluid water lily painting
Lunch prepared by the chef featuring charcuterie, patisserie breads, cheeses and salads.

Tonight get ready for a very special Degustation prepared by our chef inspired by French Cuisine. Dress for dinner! Dress code; French artist from the Impressionist era! Are you a muse or a moustachioed artist?

DAY 12 June 15 FRIDAY, 2018
A relaxing morning painting flowers in season from life, most likely to be peonies and roses and anything else you want to cover off, inspired by the floral paintings of Suzanne Valadon, incorporating colour and pattern. We also look at Matisse.
Varnish any finished works and allow to dry.

Enjoy a cooking lesson on how to make delicious tartiflette with Anne and then we enjoy the results for lunch.

After lunch an afternoon visit to the beautiful town of Gargilesse and the magnificent view of the Creuse river bend at the Boucle de Pin. Visit an art gallery I discovered where you can actually buy an original French impressionist painting. It’s free to look! Explore the towns galleries and take time out for a meander and a coffee.

Home to relax before our driver takes us to dine at my favourite local restaurant located in a quaint stone village. The village has its own chateau and moat. The restaurant has a Michelin Star, but not the price tag to match luckily for us.  This restaurant never fails to delight and impress with its service and cuisine. Dinner own cost but great value.

A private chateau at Lys Saint George near where we will go for dinner.This chateau has its own moat

DAY 13 June 16 SATURDAY, 2018

This morning we are taken to La Chatre to enjoy the local market atmosphere and choose ingredients for Bouillabaisse and other stunning meals our private chef will prepare for us.  There is a great selection of inexpensive linen clothing, hats and more. Meander the medieval back streets and the interesting homewares stores.

Circus performer promoting at the La Chatre markets

Delicious chocolate eclairs from La Chatre
The table is set for... painting!

Visit a fabulous Brocante stacked with treasures. Lunch alongside the locals in the pub under ancient oak beams, after the markets, and deeply relax into the vibe of being in France and living the life. Lunch is own arrangements and preferences in La Chatre but my suggestion has gone down very well and its the choice by popular vote with the locals.

I will be selecting produce to prepare for our afternoon session painting influenced by the fabulous Pierre Bonnard for a domestic setting still life.  And showing you how to capture the magic. Afternoon tea from the La Chatre Patisserie. Sigh!

Tonight we enjoy a meal prepared for us by the chef at home.

Our private driver is on hand to pick us up and drop us off from our adventures.

DAY 14 June 17 SUNDAY, 2018

This morning we explore the drawing style of Matisse using luscious thick art papers purchased in Paris.
I take you through an exercise to create confident works on paper inspired by Matisse. We will make several artworks from roses and floral still lifes to a self-portrait in this style of painting with a little French twist drawing on specific colour palettes and recipes so you end up with sensational paintings!

A Matisse painting is soft colours.
Many of hos paintings are flooded with deep colour

Lunch at L’Hirondelle prepared by our devoted chef.
Afternoon tour with our private driver to Nohant, the property of the famous French writer Georges Sand near La Chatre.  Frederic Chopin spent many years in Nohant with his lover Georges Sand, an independent female novelist and memoirist who made the Creuse famous through her romantic descriptions of the wild and natural landscape and the ruins. 

We visit her home and very pretty gardens and enjoy a private tour in English accessing parts of the house otherwise inaccessible.  She was raised for much of her childhood by her grandmother, at her estate ‘Nohant’, which became the setting for many of Sand’s books. She was also well known for wearing men’s clothing, highly unusual in her day, which allowed more freedom to enter bars and other venues.

George’s son Maurice was an accomplished artist, and as well as painting and drawing, created a puppet theatre and 300 puppets which were based on characters of the day, and used in performances at Nohant and in Paris.

We enjoy a private tour in English.

Afternoon tea in the gardens. Private tour included. Return to La Foret and relax, take a bike ride, or finish any paintings underway.

Tonight get ready for a traditional French raclette meal, our last meal together at French Art School for this tour. Has someone got the tissues handy? Its always sad to say goodbye. Our last meal from the chef for this tour besides early breakfast next day.

DAY 15 June 18 MONDAY, 2018
An early breakfast then our driver is ready with the coach to take us to Chateauroux for the approx two our train ride to Paris where you will meet with your connections
or other holiday plans. If you would like an extra night or two to relax in La Foret before travelling I am happy to arrange a room at a low rate and you can continue to explore the area or read a book, paint or chill out.

Price per person single room throughout $8965
land package;

  • all art supplies for at least 10 artworks mid size to fit suitcase size
  • Art tuition;
  • 2 x half day en plein air painting in oils sessions
  • 2 en plein air sketch sessions 
  • Total of 8 half day in studio painting sessions in oils and acrylics
  • 4 specific floral photography sessions on tour and at La Foret du Temple ( you just need your smartphone or itablet or digital camera)
  • private drivers throughout
  • eclass art series prior to trip
  • private chef in the Limousin
  • 2 cooking lessons with local French woman Anne
  • Degustation dinner x 1 pp prepared by the chef.
  • free wifi throughout
  • own room ( only one twin share in the limousin)
  • 14 nights accommodation
  • Transfer to Paris at end of tour by driver and train
  • Small group
  • wines and aperitifs supplied in the Limousin
  • 11 Lunches supplied 
  • Entries to museums & other listed itinerary entries
  • George Sand private tour in English
    • 5 chef prepared dinners and 1 local style raclette dinner
  • Stunning photo references supplied for our painting sessions
  • Sketchbook for drawing and notes
  • Host tour guide Jacqueline Coates & her assistant for the group
  • Bonus E-course of 12 E-classes providing relevant and interesting painting info in relation to the tour highlights.
  • Private Facebook page for the group
  • Certificate of Completion
  • Souvenir Gift

Price per person own room throughout; $8965pp

One twin share opportunity for 2 people who are friends; $8650 pp

 A Bit About How I teach

Coming from a background as a highly successful selling  artist with my Blooms floral artworks, makes for a great base for teaching others. I had already proven to myself I could paint and at round that time discovered I loved to share my secrets with others to give them a big confidence boost and help them accelerate their painting potential.
I made a decision in March 2012 to devote myself entirely to teaching others and doing a great job of it. That way unlike other artist teachers I wouldn't be in competition with my students who understandably wanted it all. Was I going to be an artist or a teacher? I chose teaching so I could give generously.

This has proved fruitful for the students as so many of my students have gone rapidly from no painting experience to in demand artists themselves.

Teaching 100 percent of my time & writing teaching programs has honed my skills to help others take the pain and risk out of painting failure. Its my full time occupation to make painting a great experience for others wanting creativity in their lives. No need for failure.    It's not necessary. I show my students how to handle the paint. I give loads of demos. I am on hand to support and assist. I explain how to do it, I show you how to do it and I make sure you have the guidance on  hand you need to be able to do it too.

My unique approach to painting produces outstanding results and the acceleration of achievement is fast and satisfying for us all. I believe in compassionate teaching, and that above all patience is more important than talent.

On French Art School I have had complete newbies as well as students from my other programs participate. Regardless of varying levels of experience, they all produce beautiful work to take home & be proud of. Its always amazing fun and everyone makes friends and supports each other.

Bookings to
French Art School

JACQUELINE    M 0429 100 929 or via 

For flights and any holiday arrangement add ons etc you are welcome to use your own travel agent OR let me refer you to travel agent Robert Thornberry at Signature Travel Orange, NSW ( at the moment contactable by email) . Robert is up to date with the tour arrangements and can arrange any before and after details you may wish to arrange. 

Please ensure I have you registered for a place before making other plans around the tour. If you can't get hold of me for any reason, ( I am sometimes in workshops but will answer messages ) texting works well! And you can also let Robert know your details and he will pass to me.

Robert Thornberry
Signature Travel Orange
Phone : 02 6362 6733
M.0429 100 929 
M. 0412 587 438



No previous art experience is necessary to take the French Art School Tour.
I am known for my generous and compassionate teaching methods that open ip painting to anyone who wants to give it a go. The methods i use are always based on taking the pain oit of painting so yoiu can get great results quickly. Typically students take home up to 12 paintings each! So not only will you have a stunning inspirational holiday you will take home beautiful artwork. 

One of my students from the June 2017 tour used the paintings made on tour in France as the basis for a collection of work that she sold a few months later in August at an exhibition.
Others prefer to keep their work and frame it at home. 
Some art is on canvas and some is on thick artisan art paper so its easy to fit in your suit case.


Packaging materials for paintings to be taken home are supplied and assistance will be given to pack your paintings for travel.


On the previous tours, it has so happened that guests have booked in on their own and made great friends on the trip they have stayed in contact with afterwards because they enjoyed the friendships made on tour. We have a  private Facebook page where you can meet everyone before the tour starts and keep in touch with afterwards.

There is provision for one twin share room in the Limousin of two friends want to travel and share together which is why we can go to 10 guests but if not it will be a maximum of 9 guests.


That depends on how much shopping you want to do! Most of your meals are supplied once in the Limousin as we have a private chef. Its nice to stop for coffees along the way or refreshments when touring. We visit brocanteurs, who sell vintage linen and other fabulous objects. The Riviera will tempt and you may want to buy perfume somewhere along the way.  I supply all your art supplies and that is included in the price. About $1000 Aussie should be enough if you aren't bringing home chandeliers! Though chandeliers are as little as 80 euros!!!!!!! ( about $120) and can be boxed to travel with you.


Some people like to extend their stay in a place that they know and feel comfortable in. You are welcome to stay longer at the French Houses in the Limousin at a student rate per night if you want some time to just be, go for walks, play in the art studio, and hang out. The chef will have finished but i will be there and we share the duties for cooking and whose turn to pour the wine. There is a local driver who can take you out in my car if you feel like seeing even more of the stunning area.

Robert Thornberry from Signature Travel Orange is happy to assist you with travel plans before or after the tour if you want to extend your holiday into additional experiences such as a cruise or a visit to other parts of Europe, or ask your own agent to assist with travel ideas and plans for before and after.


At a certain age everyone likes to enjoy their own private space as well as engage with others during the day which is why I have planned that your own room booked is for you in Nice and Lyon, and in the Limousin. There is only one room in the Limousin that has the option of twin share of two friends come on the tour and would like that otherwise it reverts to a single room.

Please advise any dietary requirements at the time of booking so we can plan in advance as we consider food an important part of the enjoyment of our time together. Picnic lunches generally are quiches or baguettes. If you are gluten free I cannot guarantee a replacement but will try. You might need to find it a cafe yourself. We will support you to get what you need.

We have FREE WIFI at the hotel and at the villas. At the villas there is a landline your family can call you on. You can call other landlines in Australia from L'Hirondelle for free  as long you call another landline. The service is not free for Mobile phones so make sure you have the landline phone numbers with you.


French Art School supplies canvases for specific painting exercises bearing in mind you travel with them afterwards so the selected sizes are small to mid-size for your convenience.

French Art School supplies paints, brushes, and everything else you will need so you are not encumbered by weight when you travel. By all means bring any favourite brushes.


A feature of the tour is that we have pur own space and equipment to paint with providing total creative support and freedom whilst on holiday.

Downstairs at L’Hirondelle, the old ballroom makes the perfect spacious painting studio.


Make sure you have a digital camera or iphone for photos or other fave device. There are so many photo opportunities. Bring a charger and a European plug adaptor. You can buy the adaptor at the airport before leaving Australia.


Take comfortable clothing, shoes you like walking in, some smart casual clothing for going out to dinner, and be prepared that the weather will be cool and spring like so trans seasonal is a good idea, plus some tops suitable if its warmer. ie the ability to add warm layers or strip back a layer of it's warmer. You are likely to get some paint on you in the painting sessions so bring a few tops you can chuck out afterwards to make room for the new things you will bring home! 

                                                                                                                     - JACQUELINE COATES

Total for land package FRENCH ART SCHOOL with Jacqueline Coates tuition & host

$8,965 pp land package 

Bookings to
French Art School

JACQUELINE    M 0429 100 929 or via 

For flights and any holiday arrangement add ons etc let me refer you to my trusted travel agent Robert Thornberry at Signature Travel Orange or feel free to use your own agent. Robert is up to date with the tour arrangements and can arrange any before and after details you may wish to arrange. Please ensure I have your registered for a place before making other plans around the tour. If you cant get hold of me for any reason, texting works well! And you can also let Robert know your details and he will pass to me.

Robert Thornberry
Signature Travel Orange
Phone : 02 6362 6733
M.0429 100 929 
M. 0412 587 438

Paint live at Monet's garden in Giverny!

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