Skip to main content

Click here to return to  “Painting Workshops and Write-Ups”.


From June 15th to 21st, 2016, I tutored a group of students at “Art in The Algarve”. Olhão, Portugal. The students were from Australia, New Zealand, England, Brazil and America. The venue is a conglomeration of renovated Portuguese houses with many sleeping areas all with en suites. There are also numerous living areas, two kitchens, two swimming pools and a very large painting studio. Most days breakfast lunch and dinner were included but on a few occasions we ate at the local restaurants. The course was overseen at the location by dedicated staff  who provided wonderful meals (three times a day) and saw to the efficient maintenance of the property.

Olhão is a fishing port and its history is steeped in Moorish culture and seafaring. The fish and vegetable markets are enormous. We enjoyed Portuguese food and wine and the people themselves.

We painted iconic scenes of Olhão both in the studio and en plein air with each student producing 12 finished paintings at the end of the six days. En plein air subjects included boats in the harbour, a café scene and two paintings done at Armona Island which we went to by private water taxi (see the image of the sea sick dog). Studio paintings were done from photos I had taken of the church (Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Soledade) and the Saturday market. The course was based on my “Five Steps To Watercolour” where the students were guided through the importance of composition, colour, tone, atmosphere and finish, and encouraged to apply these demonstrated methods to their own style of painting. We celebrated the last night eating wonderful Portuguese food and wine and enjoying each other’s company and paintings.

Please enjoy some images from this wonderful painting holiday.