What to pack on a painting holiday in Italy

What to pack on a painting holiday in Italy

What to pack on a painting holiday in Italy?


Chances are, if you're going on an painting or other art holidays in Italy, you'll be going in the warm enough seasons (most likely from April to October).  Depending on the destination in Italy, you'll have to add swimwear if you're heading for a painting holiday in a hotel that has a pool like Azenart Holidays. Lucky you! Regardless, you'll need to bring all or some of the material needed to paint (and/or draw). 'All or some' because some painting vacation companies provide some of the material such as the easel, stool and a board which they will lend you for the duration of your painting trip. Having such material furnished makes your luggage that much lighter, and your head free to focus of the more pleasurable aspects of your art holiday

List of things to bring on a painting trip: It goes without saying that you'll want to bring quality art material.

  • A good light-weight carrying case or a wheely bag. Bear in mind you'll have to fit a board in the bag, so make sure it has the right measurements (length and width).

  • A hat or cap. Italy is quite sunny.

  • Paint brushes: Unless you are used to painting with your own brushes and know perfectly which brushes you'll be using on your trip, bring at least a dozen paint brushes, different sizes and for different uses. If you are a beginner, you'll want to ask a sales person to assist you in choosing adequate paint brushes. A good paint brush is not necessarily a very expensive paintbrush. There are very decent brushes that will suit you fine for your painting trip. The main difference with expensive brushes is that the less expensive brushes may not last as many years as expensive brushes.

  • Paint. Before you leave for your painting holiday in Italy you'll want to decide which medium to choose for your trip. Acrylic and watercolour are quite suitable as they both dry quickly and hence you can be on your way shortly after you're done painting. Oils however take days to dry! You'll need to add a wet-canvas carrying case to your list if you have decided to paint with oil paints when on your art trip. You'll also need solvants, although most painting holiday travel groups will allow water-soluble oils only. 

  • Wet-canvas carrying case: if painting with oils.

  • Canvas boards: These are flat canvases on a cardboard back. Two things about them: They can be framed later, they can get heavy and take up space if you bring many of them.

  • Pre-cut canvas from a roll. Lighter, flater, can also be framed later at home.

  • Canvas frames: you'll need plenty of extra space in your luggage if you bring canvas frames.  

  • Paper: if you are going on a watercolour painting trip. Be sure to buy quality paper. It is not that much more expensive and will save you a lot of frustration, especially if you are a beginner. 

  • Drawing paper if you're planning on drawing only.

  • A glass for dipping your brushes in water.

  • Wet-wipes or cloth for wiping your hands.

  • Pencils or charcoal for sketching

  • Watercolour pencils if you like working with them.

  • A sketch pad

  • Appropriate clothing that you can easily move your arms and legs in.

  • Comfortable shoes.

  • Personal toiletries and belongings.

  • A smartphone for taking photos you might want to paint later.

  • An English-Italian digital translator, unless you're going on a group painting holiday.

Unless otherwise provided, you will also need:

  • A board or a cardboard folder that your can use as a support for painting (unless otherwise provided).

  • An easel: because you are most likely to walk on a painting holiday, you'll want to buy a light-weight easel if at all possible!! Quality aluminum easels are easy to carrying and foldable, just right for painting trips.

  • A lightweight shelf for your easel or a foldable stool to set your things on. 

  • A foldable stool to sit on.

  • An inflatable cushion could be a good idea depending when you're painting.



How to make home-made watercolors!

Watercolor painting holiday

You like to paint and would like to make your own colors? Well, know that it is possible and that you aren't the only one! Creating your own tints is an exciting experience you'll be proud of. 

Up until the 1850s, before ready-made tubes were made available in shops, artists made their own watercolors. However while some people never stopped making their own hues, others would like to start making theirs.  

Watercolors contain color pigments bought and used in powder form. Different colors can be mixed together to create new hues. These are then mixed with binder. Those of you wanting to use a more natural method will prefer mixing your color powders with natural acacia gum (also known as gum arabic), water and glycerin. Proportions are as follows: 1 teaspoon of powder for 1 teaspoon of the gum, water and glycerin mixture. A glass mortar is perfect for making the mixture. Then add 2 teaspoons of demineralized water and a spoonful of honey. A few drops of a preservative agent, such as clove oil. Detailed watercolor recipe below:

In a glass mortar, mix

- 1 Teaspoon of good quality color pigments, that you can order from Sennelier, for example.

- 1/3 teaspoon of gum arabic + 1/3 teaspoon of water + 1/3 glycerin.

Add 2 teaspoons of demineralized water + 1 teaspoon of honey.

Mix. Add 3 drops of clove oil.

Once the paste is well mixed, keep in an airtight container. It should be ready to use within 12 hours.

Enjoy your wonderful homemade watercolors! You'll be able to use them at home, but also why not on a painting holiday!

What to Visit in Venice, Italy?

Venice! An open-air museum where the streets are made of water. Everyone has heard of Venice in Italy. Beauty is around every corner. Before actually visiting this exciting city, you could think it's an over-rated place oozing with romanticism people like to talk about. But... you'll realize upon getting there that it is indeed a special place, in no way like a theme park. Authenticity is vibrant in Venice. Whether, you go there as a simple tourist on a weekend get-away, on a Venice painting holiday or on your honeymoon, you'll no doubt be under a spell.


Venice Painting Holiday, Venice Painting Trip, Drawing Holidays in Venice, Watercolour Venice Holiday

What to visit in Venice? Here is list of main attractions you won't regret visiting:

SAINT MARK'S SQUARE (PIAZZA SAN MARCO) On this gigantic square that's actually rectangular, you'll be able to visit the the following landmarks: 

Campanile of Saint Mark's Square (San Marco Campanile) a high red brick tower that will give you a breathtaking view of the whole of Venice. In front of the Campanile, you'll be able to visit:

Doge's Palace (Palazzio Ducale) a magnificent museum used in ancient times as a palace prison where Giacomo Casanova was held and even escaped from. Next to this marvellous landmark is another famous landmark of Venice:

La Basilica di San Marco (Saint Mark's Basilica) - a patriarchal cathedral well worth visiting.

Museo Correr: art museum on Saint Mark's square.

Then, about 100 metres away, on the water you'll find:

BRIDGE OF SIGHS (Ponte Dei Sospiri): close to Saint Mark's square, you'll be able to see gondolas going under it. Very Venetian!

You'll also definitely want to see:

RIALTO BRIDGE (Ponte di Rialto):  The very heart (or at least one of the main arteries) of Venice!

ACCADEMIA BRIDGE (Ponte dell'Accademia): Beautiful views of the Grand Canal.

GRAND CANAL Main S-shaped body of water in Venice where you'll see many beautiful palaces.

LA FENICE THEATER (TEATRO LA FENICE) This theater is worth a look, even if you don't have concert tickets for La Fenice, you'll be able to visit the inside of it. Get ready for a stunning surprise!

BASILICA DI SANTA MARIA DELLA SALUTE  An absulte wonder of architecture on the Grand Canal, very popular during the Venice Carnival period, where marquis and duchesses like to parade...

BURANO ISLAND Famous island of Venice with multi-coloured houses. Just quaint with its tiny canal! It has a few restaurants, so you can have lunch or dinner there.

MURANO ISLAND Venice island known for Murano glass. You'll be able to visit the glass shops and attend glass-making worskshops where you'll watch Venetian glass blowers at work. 

LIDO ISLAND is an island about 10 to 15 minutes away from Venice's centre by vaporetto. This island situated in the wider Venice lagoon is where the Venice film festival is held every year in September. It holds many typical 'villas' from the 1920s and 30s, and was a very popular popular place where Marlene Dietrich, Greta Garbo and other glamarous stars liked to come have fun and be seen. You can rent bikes to tour the island (11 km long, all flat!) and there are beaches there, especially sand beaches on the Adriatic side, where you can swim. 



For further information about the city of VENICE ITALY, visit the official city of love's website www.veneziaunica.it

You can also get more information on ART HOLIDAYS IN ITALY, or more specifically on PAINTING AND DRAWING HOLIDAYS IN VENICE by clicking what's highlighted in blue.  

Other art vacations and watercolour holidays in Italy include the following: CAPRI PAINTING HOLIDAY, and also ROME PAINTING HOLIDAY, and let's not forget the mysterious and enchanted POMPEII + AMALFI HOLIDAY.