Painting courses in the French Alps

Autumn Course

Watercolour Painting in the French Alps

Painting courses with Dawn Pretty in the French Alps

Open to all Abilities

We have the great pleasure to have teamed up with a fantastic painter; Dawn Pretty to be able to offer a special weeks painting holiday this Autumn in Vallouise to capture the fantastic Autumn colours here. This course is open to all abilities but limited to 6 people maximum.We have the great pleasure to have teamed up with a fantastic painter; Dawn Pretty to be able to offer a special weeks painting holiday this Autumn in Vallouise to capture the fantastic Autumn colours from many different viepoints. Alpine meadows, with backdrops of stunning mountain scenery, beautiful lake vistas, and local market scenes. With enjoyment as a priority, all abilities are welcome and you will be nurtured in your own style with levels of tuition to your taste.

Terrified beginners will be introduced to the life enhancing skill of playing with paint and awakening the senses to see the beauty of everyday life. This course is open to all abilities but limited to 6 people maximum. You will be staying in our best chalet " Chalet Chabrand" which is situated in the centre of Vallouise in a fully inclusive package which will include transport, full catering, and tuition. Dawn is a very talented artist in all disciplines, and a lovely person to boot! Programme proposed; studies of light on ancient architecture; sharp angular perspectives; soft distant mountains and cloud; splashing intuitively using watery ways with tumbling rivers and silvan scenery; deep focussed botanical depictions.

A variety of techniques, to carry home in your repertoire, to continue painting any subject confidently. Sat - Fly to Turin, transfer to Vallouise France to settle in, relax and converse over dinner. Sun – Friday we will alternate subject matter and locations, watch inspiring and informative demonstrations and make your own holiday masterpiece memories on paper. Sat - Transfer to Turin, fly to UK (option to stay in Turin if desired) Tutor – Dawn Pretty has ten years experience of bringing the best out of you.

We are an English family that has lived in Vallouise for the last 12 years. We chose Vallouise as it is situated in the Southern French Alpes " Provence in the Alps." We get over 300 days of sunshine a year, it is never too hot as we are at an altitude of 1100m, and we get 4 proper seasons.

We are on the edge of the Ecrins National Park which is the biggest National Park in France with mountains over 4000m and glaciers. We are in an area of outstanding beauty, but it is little known by people outside of France. I hidden gem!

In the Autumn all the Meleze pine trees change colour and eventually drop their needles. The only pine to do this. The effect is truly amazing. The whole mountainside a blaze of oranges and reds, often with the first dusting of snow on the mountain summits.

Just about EVERYTHING is included in the cost of your holiday: full programme of tuition, accommodation (including all linen and towels, no single supplements), pre-dinner aperitifs, all meals, and local transportation, including transfers from and to Turin airport.

Flights to and from Turin airport from the UK. Holiday/cancellation insurance. Any painting materials you may require. (Paper is available for sale at cost when you arrive. Also full painting kits if ordered when booking. Do not hesitate to ask for advice on purchases.)

8.00 – 9.00: Continental breakfast
9.30 – 17.30: Tutored location painting sessions, with morning and afternoon tea breaks and a pause between
13.00 and 14.30 for picnic / light lunch / siesta. The painting areas range from painting in the village, especially on market day, to locations by the rivers, or higher in the mountains – even with views of glaciers, to a day in the fortified town of Briancon. No walking or carrying of equipment is necessary, as we have a 4 wheel drive vehicle. Opt in or opt out as you wish, you paint at your own rhythm. The tempo is adapted to your needs.
19.00 : Aperitifs & evening meal with wine. We also have a very good English qualified sports masseur (female) who lives locally and can come to the chalet to give private massages. Cost included or should you say at extra cost?I will book first slot anyway!!

The only painting equipment you will need to bring is your favourite kit, or a full kit can be provided at cost, do ask at booking stage.
• ‘Artist quality’ watercolours, either in block or tubes.
• A mixing palette/plate.
• Pencils and a sketchpad. Watercolour pencils as well as graphite. 2b +
• Watercolour paper BLOCK, at a minimum of 300g. Note; a block is pre stretched paper gummed-edged four sides, stuck together to form a solid block.
• Two water pots.


Accommodation for the Art and Painting course is at Chalet Chabrand. This award winning eco-friendly private chalet is in the centre of Vallouise and offers 5 star comfort, a geothermic heating system the chalet is South facing with large garden and great views.

How to find us

AlpBase, Southern French Alps