Travelrite International Painting Workshop Tasmania (February – March 2015).
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I recently led 25 students on a Travelrite International Painting Tour of Tasmania. It was a very keen group who were ready to go every morning promptly and enthusiastically. The trip began in Launceston and our first painting stop was Bicheno. We painted the bay and the blow hole and as the images show, everyone embraced the locations with ease and enthusiasm. Our next stop was Coles Bay on the Freycinet Peninsula and we painted a view of the rugged rocky hills, The Hazards. Next we went to Hobart where we stayed at the magnificent Grand Chancellor Hotel, right next to Constitution Dock. We painted around Constitution Dock at several locations and at the Salamanca Markets on Saturday. We also had day trips to Richmond and Port Arthur and an afternoon at MONA. At Port Arthur we had a boat tour of the beautiful harbour it resides next to and a drizzly exciting painting afternoon at a location looking down over the entire settlement. It is still a fantastic place to visit and is wonderfully maintained with a new excellent, huge visitor information centre and cafeteria. There are keen volunteers who will drive you about the place in golf like carts and the gardens and lawns are beautifully maintained. There were hundreds of tourists but it is big enough to find your own quiet painting location. The 1996 massacre is referred to discretely and does not intrude on the visit but it is worth going to the memorial to pay your respects to those who died.
We left Hobart for Strahan where we had a wonderful time painting the bay and taking a Gordon River Cruise. A highlight of the trip was a walk through the wilderness forests … a magical ancient place with Huon pines dating from aeons BC. We also stopped at Sarah Island penal settlement, another fascinating place. We next headed to Cradle Mountain where we stayed at the Cradle Mountain Hotel. We painted the forest from the balcony as it was raining but once again my wonderful students came up with the goods and all produced excellent work.
A visit to Dove Lake took place during a snow flurry (yes it was Summer) where we took photos of the mountains when the sun miraculously broke through and showered us with light! We painted from the photos we had taken in the huge Wilderness Gallery at the Hotel. An adventurous few even went out in zero degree temperatures that night to undertake a wildlife spotlighting bus tour. We saw sheep sized wombats, pademelons, spotted quolls and devils! The last night we had our final critique with everyone showing what they had produced and the results were outstanding. Our wonderful bus driver Les and tour leader Pam were always there for us every day. Students produced at least 12 beautiful paintings each with some very keen enthusiast still painting into the night!