Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Tuscany Plein Air Painting Workshop with Niki Gulley

5" x 7" textured oil by Niki Gulley

Day 1 - Afternoon Location - ART TREKS: Tuscany
Plein Air Painting & Photography Workshop with Niki Gulley & Scott Williams

After we finished our morning painting at the villa, and enjoyed a delicious lunch of proscuittos, pecorinos, fresh fruit and a little vino, we ventured out to our afternoon location. Just one of the unique aspects of the Tuscan landscape are the cypress that dot the horizon, so we picked this long curving road lined by cypress for our second subject. This was the only day that it looked like it might rain, but we lucked out and the drops stayed away. The overcast skies are actually quite nice for plein air work because it provides some shade while you're painting, and keeps the light more constant.

So we set up our easels along this overlook, and quickly blocked in our basic shapes and colors. Next we worked on creating volume in the hillsides, and then added highlights and shadows to the bushes to give them more dimension. Lastly, we added highlights to our road and finally the fun part - all of those cypress lining the road. Above you can see my easel set up - I like this simple lightweight pochade box by EASyL (, which holds everything: palette, paints, brushes and 2 wet boards.

As a reward that night, we treated ourselves to a fantastic Tuscan dinner!

I'll have this Tuscany oil painting in addition to many more at the Cottonwood Art Festival,, this weekend, Oct. 1st & 2nd from 9am - 6pm in Richardson, TX. Please stop by my booth to see them in person.

Or, if you would like to join us on future ART TREKS to Paris, France in May or Tuscany, Italy in September, visit, which goes into detail about our upcoming Plein Air Painting & Photography Workshops. Early registration deadline for a $500 savings is quickly approaching!


E-mail me at for more information.

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