Art Course Testimonials
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Testimonials below are written with the original authors’ permission.
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My intention was to produce as much artwork as I could and to explore technique, evaluate my style, and learn new skills. My hope was to find a place that would provide me with an environment where I could focus on doing just that. I was not disappointed! Not only did I receive valuable instruction, I was so pleased to have none of the typical daily distractions that tend to pull us away from the task at hand. Another benefit I found was the creative input and sharing from the other artists attending. Friendships and bonds were created. The whole experience was far more than I could have hoped for. The instructor was experienced, knowledgeable, accomplished, talented and patient. Outstanding location; delicious meals; comfortable accommodations; and friendly banter and easy-going personalities of hosts.
Imagine yourself wanting to be in an ideal environment created just for your comfort and a place that wills you to be creative. Imagine also a place that smells, feels and envelops you like home. Imagine friends that encourage. Imagine a beautiful peaceful rest every night. Imagine Shenandoah Manor. You have arrived.
The retreat exceeded my expectations and I will certainly do it again. It was so nice to have an extended time where all I had to do was concentrate on painting in the company of a friendly and encouraging group. I appreciated all the individual attention I received from Jan and learned so much also from the help given to my fellow artists. I loved my accommodations, the extraordinary meals (healthy, beautiful presentation and delicious) and the beauty of the grounds and surrounding area. As I work on finishing my plein air, I recall Jan’s advice to “stop” working so hard and let the paint do the work; it’s helping me to loosen up.
I came to get myself started in plein air techniques and to refresh my skills in the use of acrylic paint. Jan is a very effective teacher; he led me to demonstrate to myself just where some of my problems lay. I also found myself feeling “totally stuck” at times when I was applying paint to canvas. These are the moments when an experienced teacher can simply step in and show just how it’s done. I arrived at the course with a lot of personal inertia; Jan got me moving again. I also want to say that you were both not just helpful, you were both cheerfully helpful, and that makes a real difference.
This was my first visit to Shenandoah Art Destination, but it won’t be my last. The instruction from Jan was easy to understand and always pertinent to the question. A vacation with a purpose is so much more rewarding. It was a wonderful kind of tired at the end of the day; not just one more day of work. I went home with a sense of purpose and a real desire to keep going with my art. Having direction makes all the difference when a hobby has gone stale or set aside for other things. If you want a renewed enthusiasm for your art form, Shenandoah Art Destination can do that. Go with a positive outlook. Be open and open-minded and good things will happen when you remove the barriers.
Having painted for years, I’ve attended my share of workshops, and each one proved beneficial. I left inspired to paint more and keep improving. However, Shenandoah Art Destination proved to be a standout. I couldn’t have asked for more – superb plein-air painting locations, individualized instruction, warm and casual atmosphere, great accommodations, and food at its best. The kind of school/vacation to which I will return.