February 29 – March 7, 2020, John MacDonald
Paint in Plein Air and the Studio
Join Master Artist John MacDonald when he returns to the Casa
Feb. 29 – March 7, 2020
Plein Air Painting with John MacDonald
“John is very passionate about his painting. His teaching about value and composition suddenly awakens me as I had never learnt painting so structurally yet simply. A great teacher.
– Dr. C. Lam, Hong Kong
John MacDonald doing a painting demo in El Tuito
What to expect:
Imagine the best art workshop vacation of your life: Painting in a charming fishing village and other exotic locals along the gorgeous Pacific coast of Mexico , with master artist – workshop leader John MacDonald! Immerse yourself in the joys of authentic Mexican village life at one of the most beautiful and arts oriented locales in Latin America, Casa de los Artistas, in the safe and serene village of Boca de Tomatlan, 10 miles south of Puerto Vallarta.
John MacDonald, View East towards the Mts. Painted from in front of the Casa, oil on panel
John MacDonald – “Meadow Path“, oil
A glimpse at the workshop and the weeks itinerary:
Arrange to arrive Saturday the 4th of February from noon on, at Puerto Vallarta International Airport, and taxi to Boca by 2pm on, (we arrange taxis to share back to the airport the following Saturday, cost is about $10. to $30 depending on how many share a taxi, see our FAQ’s for details). You will be shown to your private room, with balcony and wonderful views, settle in, refresh yourself – breath in the unique environment of the Boca and then, in the late afternoon, join other participants on the second floor of the Casa in the main dining and living area for a snack and to meet and greet one another. We will have a short orientation and then at approximately 6:30 we will cross the river to have dinner at Ramones’ Hauchinango (“Red Snapper”) Restaurant, (this is a fishing village after all, though there are many other things on the menu as well, to accommodate all varieties of diets). We dine on the beach with our feet in the sand as we become acquainted with one another and watch the sunset over the magnificent Bay of Banderas, waves lapping on the shore just a few yards away.
John MacDonald – “July Stream“, oil
Breakfasts (approx. 8:15 to 9am) and Lunch (1pm.) are prepared by our wonderful Mexican Chef Ruby and her assistant. These meals are served on the main floor of the Casa in the large dinning / living area and consists of a variety of healthful and delicious lacto ovo vegetarian fare. Always available are, coffee, tea, fresh fruits and juices, cereals, granola, peanut butter, jelly, cheese and milk. These are complimented by such things as pancakes with maple syrup (we are from Massachusetts) fresh breads and cheeses as well as traditional Mexican dishes like chiliquilles or huevos rancheros. Please let us know if you have any specific dietary restrictions.
John MacDonald, demo at the Puerto Vallarta Botanical Gardens, oil on panel
John MacDonald – “Last Light“, oil
From approximately 9:15 -9:30am till – 1- 1:30 we will work in the studio or plein air. Another gourmet meal is prepared and served by the Casa chef Ruby and her assistant at approx. 1 -1:30 and after lunch is siesta till approximately 3 -3:30pm. This is your time, – work in the studio if you like or engage yourself in one of the myriad of additional activities available to you at the Casa, (see below). In the afternoon sessions, John will give individual, in depth help to each artist at their easel.
John MacDonald – “Snowshoeing“, oil
This workshop will be an intensively rewarding and meaningful experience of study and painting with Master Artist John MacDonald. The workshop is geared toward all levels of student/artist of the landscape, who work in oils. For your convenience, the Casa studio is open 24 hours. You are urged to come in early, before breakfast if you like. The morning demonstrations by John will begin right after breakfast, (approximately 9:30).
John MacDonald – “Quiet Waters“, oil
This class will take participants through the entire process of creating strong landscape paintings: from building effective compositions to working tonality, color and finishing with sensitively chosen details.
John MacDonald – “Spring Birch“, oil
Following a traditional 19th century painting process focusing on the landscape, participants will hone their observational skills while coming to a clearer understanding of how a successful landscape painting is structured. An emphasis will be placed on proper seeing–looking closely at the existing color and tonal relationships–and then onto understanding and manipulating what is seen.
John MacDonald – “Summer Heat“, oil
John MacDonald, demo observing and painting palm frond, oil on panel
We will be working with the basic elements of painting, seeing them anew and in ways that can improve the craft of your painting. Through daily demonstrations and individual critiques and instruction, participants will be encourage to assimilate what is learned in class with their existing techniques and artistic vision.
John MacDonJohn MacDonald – “The Cascade“, oilald – “Summer Heat“, oil
Besides working with painting techiniques, we’ll also look at much broader issues of painting and art–how to deal with our mistakes and so-called failures, how to identify and manage our fears and lack of confidence, and how we can structure our lives as artists that can lead us to being more productive, creative, and joyful.
This is a workshop that you definitely don’t want to miss. If you’re ready to take your
painting to the next level, spend a week relaxing in the tropics, learning and having fun with one of the great contemporary painting masters – sign up now!
“Outstanding!! Very good work environment with some fun too! One of the best workshops I’ve gone to. John is super knowledgable and SUPER generous. The Casa experience is a great way to improve your painting skills and also have a fun holiday and meet interesting people.”
M. Lawther, Vancouver, B.C.
Additional activities available at the Casa:
When you’re not painting: during the siesta and Friday, your time is your own. Your hosts will offer you three wonderful activities during the week, which are included in the cost of your trip (see below for more details). Or you can relax on the beautiful beach, stroll through the botanical gardens, photograph the charming village, take a siesta, visit the zoo, go hiking, walking, sea kayaking, zip lining, shopping in the Mercado, or exploring the galleries and cafés. You can enjoy peaceful alone time, or hang out with other guests. Information & Registration: (413) 625-8382
Your All-Inclusive Cost Includes this and more:
• For Participants: 5 Workshop days – after breakfast to lunch, approx. 3 hrs. in the studio,
then after lunch and siesta, 3 more hours of painting, and some evenings, (Sunday thru
Friday). Friday is free time -spend it finishing some painting, explore, relax – and then a late afternoon/evening “critique” and “fiesta” celebrating participants work. The workshop ends with this extensive critique of the student/artist work, including paintings created during the workshop, and if possible, examples of previous work painted before the workshop to possibly share. You will receive specific recommendations based on that overview, so that you can continue sensibly on your own after the workshop. More than 30 hours of Workshop time, (schedule is flexible to accommodate excursions)
• For Everyone: 7 nights accommodation (single or double occupancy -No extra charge for
a single!), 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 6 dinners, at Oceanside restaurants/all drinks included, Painting, Lunch at the award wining Puerto Vallarta Botanical Gardens as well as Painting at the Mountain town of El Tuito along with lunch and tequila-tasting at mountaintop hacienda restaurant , Puerto Vallarta excursion for gallery walking tour, shopping & city life, Boat Trip to explore the gorgeous coastline with opportunity to see whales, dolphins, giant mantas, then on to a fabulous picnic at an exotic secluded beach, (bring your camera and sketch book!)
– See our What’s Included section of this website for full details.
Workshop fee does not include round trip airfare from your city to Puerto Vallarta International Airport, expenses for personal items and gratuities for the Casa cooks and house care persons. – See our What’s Included section of this website for full details.