Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!

May everyone have a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends!

We all have so much for which to be thankful.

Happy Painting!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015


Lighthouses are one of my favorite subjects when painting along the coast.  I love the waves and beaches, but lighthouses lend that touch of humanity to an often desolate and seemingly uninhabited beach.   Designed to guide sailors or warn them of dangers, they stand as sentinels to inland waterways marking coastline hazards, shoals, reefs and safe entries to harbors.  Once widely used, the number of operational lighthouses has declined due to the expense of maintenance and the popularity of electronic navigational systems.  

One a recent trip to the Outer Banks of North Carolina, I painted several lighthouses that dotted the coastline in the areas in which we traveled.  One of my favorites, Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, is shown above.  And, I will share paintings of other lighthouses in this area within this post.

Let’s get started painting!
Materials Needed:
  • 140 lb. watercolor paper or watercolor journal  (I used a journal for these paintings, as I painted while on vacation.)
  • Brushes:  Size of your choice - Round brush; ½” flat brush; Liner or detail brush
  • Cerulean blue
  • Windsor Blue
  • Ultramarine blue
  • Payne’s Gray
  • Sap Green
  • Yellow Ochre
  • Alizarin Crimson
  • VanDyke Brown

Kneaded Eraser

Small ruler (I usually do not recommend using a rule; however, in this instance the sides of the lighthouse and the structure of the building and the roof need to have straight lines.)


Sketch your lighthouse in lightly using your ruler to make the lines of the sides of the lighthouse straight.  Draw in the remainder of the lighthouse structure using a ruler as necessary.  After the lighthouse has been sketched in, put in your background and foreground. 

Paint in your sky first.  Since watercolor will only flow where the paper is wet, it is not necessary to mask out the lighthouse.  Paint in the sky using a wet on wet technique down to the horizon where the sky meets the water.  I used Windsor Blue and varied the intensity of the color for clouds in the sky.  Using a paper towel, gently lift some of the blue paint to further indicate clouds.  At the horizon line, I dropped in a small amount of red mixed with the blue to add a purple color to the sky at the horizon.  Allow to dry.  Paint in the ocean using a deeper shade of Window Blue with a small amount of sap green leaving small areas of white to indicate waves.  Adding a touch of sap green to the blue helps separate the sky from the water, yet tie together the ocean, sky and background trees.  Allow the ocean to dry.   

Add the background trees using a mix of sap green, lightened in places with yellow ochre and deepened in places with Windsor Blue.  Allow to dry and add a branches and tree trunks with VanDyke  Brown and a liner brush. 

I painted the lighthouse next and the foreground last.  Using Payne’s Gray, paint the dark areas of the lighthouse, working around the windows.  I used a round brush; however, a liner brush might be preferred at the top portion of the lighthouse.  Allow to dry.  Paint the roof of the building section of the lighthouse and the chimneys with crimson mixed with the brown to soften the red and add an older look to the structure.  Deepen sections  of the roof by dropping in some brown.  Allow to dry.  Add shading to the structure by dropping in a very pale wash of Payne’s Gray on the left side of the lighthouse for shadows and under the eaves of the roof.  Allow to dry.

 Paint the foreground using Sap Green and yellow ochre need the tree line and working down into the sap green.  Drop in a little bit of brown at the base of the structure.  Using a wash of crimson and brown, paint the wooden walkway.  Allow to dry.  Using a liner brush, put in the details of the lighthouse tower and building as well as the walkway.  Drop in a touch of yellow ochre in the top of the lighthouse.  Allow to dry. 

Check your painting for any details you may want to add.  When satisfied, sign your painting!

Congratulations and Happy Painting!



Wandering Watercolor or How to Keep a Watercolor Journal

Just like a camera is an excellent way to remember a location when traveling, a watercolor journal can do the same thing for the artist.

If you would like to remember your travels through your “artistic” side, but have not tried a watercolor journal, you are missing out on a lot of fun on your trip.  You probably have questions….such as the ones below:

·        What supplies do I need?
·        How heavy and how big?
·        How messy?
·        How do I get started?

I’ll respond to each of these questions and try to give you some answers.

What supplies do I need?
First off – you won’t need as much as you think you will and all of the supplies can be slipped inside of a tote bag or large purse.   The following is what I have in my travel watercolor kit.

·        Watercolor Paper - Journal:  There are many watercolor journals out there with different types of paper and bindings.  The most forgiving paper is a 140 lb. weight, which will allow you to work the paints.     The bindings can vary from the basic stitched or glued design of a book to a spiral bound notebook.   I have tried both kinds with success.  On my most recent trip, I found a beautiful leather bound book with handmade paper for 40% off at a local hobby store.  I usually try for smaller rather than larger for the journal.  My journal is 6.5” x 9.5.”  I have used 7” x 10” and 9” x 12” in the past.  The paper preference, as well as size, is up to you.  A word of caution:  Handmade paper is not forgiving of mistakes and does not allow for working the watercolor paint or lifting.  Handmade papers absorb the color much faster than a standard watercolor paper.    If you are not familiar with handmade papers, I would suggest a standard 140 lb. watercolor paper for best results.

·        Watercolor paint: 
o   Pan watercolor set:  I have a Winsor & Newton pan watercolor set with 24 colors and a built in palette.  It is not too large and works out great.  Each pan can be replaced when empty to keep this set in great shape for a long time.


o   Watercolor pencils:  I prefer the flow of watercolor paint over watercolor pencils.  However, pencils will work,  if that is your preference.

·        Brushes:  I always carry a #6 round brush and a small liner brush.  I do not like using the “waterbrush”  that contains water in the handle.    I prefer a small plastic contain for my water and my “standard” brush.  However, I know of several people that love the portability of the “waterbrush.”  I usually carry a plastic bottle of drinking water for my watercolors and use the lid for my water container.  The paintings will be small and I find that to be sufficient.    A word of caution:  Let your brush dry before placing it back in your tote bag or watercolor set.  If it gets tossed around in travel, the bristles can dry in an awkward shape and it may or may not be able to be restored to its original shape. 
·        Pencil, eraser and waterproof pen:   A mechanical pencil with extra lead is the easiest type of pencil to pack.  A standard pencil will also work as long as you remember to pack a sharpener.  I like a kneaded eraser to erase any lines that I don’t want to remain in my painting.  A “Sharpie” fine point black permanent pen is good to have on hand if you are looking for bold permanent lines in your sketch.

·        Masking tape:  Not all watercolor artists use masking tape in journals.  I like the “framed” look that it gives to my paintings, and it also “saves” me a clean space under the painting to write comments and the location the painting has captured.  I place the masking tape along the outside edges of the paper; giving me the open inside area for my work. 

How heavy, and how big?
How heavy?  Just a couple of pounds – much less than most women’s purses.

How big?  Of course, depending on the size of the journal you have selected, about the size of a hardback book.  A small tote bag to hold all of your supplies and a small school pencil case for the loose items will keep your watercolor travel kit portable and ready for any trip. 

How messy?
Not messy at all!  I am a very messy painter and can almost go through a roll of paper towels every time I paint.  For some reason, I find that there is barely any mess at all with this type of painting.    I do keep a pocket pack of Kleenex handy…..just in case. 

How do I get started?
Grab your watercolor travel kit and go! 

If you have never painted outside your studio, it may take some getting used to the idea.   When we travel, it is usually to relax and most artists find painting relaxing.    So, take the time to sketch your impressions of an area.   If you see a location that you feel would make a great larger painting, do your sketch with a quick watercolor putting down the colors and your feelings.  Then take a photo of the same site and use your watercolor journal and the photo to complete a larger watercolor back in your studio.

So, start wandering and Happy Painting!




Painting the Old Hiker’s Tunnel – Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The watercolor above is of a location that is hidden from view under one of the busiest roads in the park during tourist season – Clingman’s Dome Road.  This road is closed to vehicle traffic from December 1 - March 31 or whenever weather conditions require.   However, hikers or cross country skiers can use the road when road conditions on Highway 441 over the mountains allow.  The location of the tunnel is .2 of a mile from the gated entrance to the road.  It looks like you're just driving over another bridge or stone-walled culvert, but when you walk down a small slope from the road; you find one of the most unique structures in the park.  Some folks say this was once on the Appalachian Trail while others say it was Thomas Divide Trail that traversed through the tunnel.   

Just a little history of the tunnel:
The Appalachian Trail Conservancy Regional Office provides the following information:
“There are a few things that are certain: 
1) The A. T. has always passed within sight of the north end of the tunnel;
2) The A. T. has not passed through the tunnel since 1939. Beyond that, there is some evidence in favor of the notion that the A. T. passed through the tunnel between 1934 and 1939 and some evidence against the notion."

So it appears that the tunnel may or may not have been part of the AT, but the upper part of the Thomas Divide Trail which was obliterated by the building of Newfound Gap Road as it now exists.  Just another mystery to enjoy about the Smoky Mountains! 

I enjoy painting locations in the mountains.  While hiking, I’ll take a photo with my phone and paint when I get back to the studio; I especially like painting on a rainy day when hiking is not as enjoyable.   Now, for the reason for my blog…..painting instructions!

How to Paint the Tunnel:
Materials Needed:
  • 140# Watercolor paper – I use Arches
  • #12 round brush
  • Flat brush
  • Liner brush
Watercolor Paint:
  • Payne’s Gray
  • Sap Green
  • Ultramarine
  • Yellow Ochre
  • Van Dyke Brown
Sketch the scene on your paper which has been taped to a board.   We will be executing this painting wet on wet.  I painted this watercolor in this order:

Exterior Rock Walls:
Prepare a light wash of Payne’s Gray and a wash of Yellow Ochre.  Wet the entire exterior wall area of the painting.  Using your round brush drop in the Payne’s Gray and Yellow ochre in various locations on the stone allowing the colors to blend and leaving some areas white.  Deepen the color at the bottom section of the exterior walls. Allow to dry.  

To emphasize certain stones, it will be necessary to paint them individually.  Wet only the stone you would like to paint with clean water.  Drop in the paint using the gray, the yellow or both.  However, this needs to be varied on each stone you paint.  Not every individual stone is painted, only several to give some detail to the stone wall.  Allow to dry and using a liner brush and a mix of Payne’s Gray and VanDyke Brown, paint some of the edges of the stones making certain that you do not outline each stone.  Your pencil marks will show through in some areas which will be sufficient in defining the stones.  Allow to dry.

Interior Stone Walls, Floor and Foreground:
Prepare a wash of Yellow Ochre, Payne’s Gray and Ultramarine.  Wet the interior stone walls and drop in the colors deepening the shade and intensity toward the end of the tunnel.  Allow to dry.  Paint in the floor using the same colors, but using lighter shades to indicate the light coming through the back end of the tunnel.  As you move toward the front of the tunnel with the floor color, add deeper shades of gray and VanDyke Brown mix.  Vary the shades of these colors as well to indicate light.  Allow to dry.  The side foreground areas are painted wet on wet with Ultramarine dropped in the edges along with a touch of brown. 

Background  view on the back side of the tunnel:
Paint the landscape background using washes of Sap Green, Yellow Ochre and a mix of Ultramarine and Sap Green to create a deeper shade for the trees.   Paint over the support frame of the tunnel.  You will paint over the top of the landscape background with a deep shade of Payne’s Gray which will cover the landscape colors and provide you with an unbroken tree line.   Allow to dry. 

Finishing touches:
Spatter a mix of VanDyke Brown and Payne’s Gray to the foreground sections on both the left and right.  Using a utility knife, scratch in some highlights in various locations on your painting.

 Great job – sign your name!

Happy Painting!


Monday, October 26, 2015

Barn - Townsend, TN

The painting above is a watercolor of an old barn we discovered by accident when we turned down a road in Townsend, TN trying to locate a trailhead for a hike.  I always have my phone camera with me which helps me capture all sorts of photos for painting.  Once back in the studio, I can sketch my painting and confirm colors by looking at the photo. 

This painting takes place in late summer/early fall and shows just the start of leaves changing color. The bright colors of fall along with some still green trees make for a great contrast of the old wood of the barn.  The rusty roof pulls in the orange in the few trees that have changed color.

Let’s get started on this painting. 

Materials Needed:

140# Watercolor paper – I use Arches
Masking fluid
#12 round brush
Flat brush
Liner brush

Watercolor Paint:
Payne’s Gray
Sap Green
Windsor Blue
Yellow Ochre
Van Dyke Brown
Burnt Sienna

Sketch the scene on your paper which has been taped to a board.   We will be executing this painting, as with most watercolors, by starting with the background and working forward and lighter building into darker  – wet on wet.  I painted this watercolor in this order:

·        Background foliage and sky
·        Tree trunks/branches
·        Barn
·        Foreground grass and dirt road
·        Fencing

I masked off the tree trucks and a few of the limbs with masking fluid.  I wanted to be able to make these stand out in the background among the foliage.

 Note:  I did not feel it necessary to mask off the barn or roof.  Watercolor will only flow into areas where it is wet.  I simply did not wet that area when I applied my water to the background.

Painting the sky and background foliage:
After the masking fluid has dried, wet the top portion of your paper down to the horizon (working around the barn).  Using a pale wash of Windsor blue, paint in your sky using a flat brush and painting all the way down to the horizon.    While this is still wet create areas of tree shapes with lighter colors in the background building into darker shades in the foreground using a round brush and all the colors you would like for trees and mountains.   Let the colors blend and merge together to create some great colors and shapes.    Allow to dry.

Painting the tree trunks and branches:
Remove the masking from the tree trunks and branches.  Wet the spaces with clean water and while still wet, drop in a mixture of Payne's Gray and VanDyke Brown with just a touch of Ultramarine in darker areas.    Allow to dry.  Using the same colors used for the tree trunks, add a few darker branches and small trunks in the tree area. 

Painting the Barn:
I painted the barn in stages starting with the roof first.  I love painting rusty roofs and watercolor paints are perfect for this.  Watercolors almost paint rust for you!  Wet the roof area and drop in Burnt Sienna and Ultramarine.  Let these colors blend, leaving some areas only Burnt Sienna.  Allow to dry. 

Painting the Wood sides of the barn:
Wet the sides of the barn with clean water and drop in a wash of Payne's Gray and yellow ochre allowing the colors to mingle.  Deepen the gray in the shadow of the roof.  Allow to dry.  Paint the open door and window areas with a wash of Vandyke Brown mixed with Payne's Gray.  Allow to dry.  Using a liner brush, paint in some lines to indicate the boards.   Allow to dry and dry brush in additional lines to indicate the grain in the wood.  Do not make this too detailed. 

Painting the foreground grass and dirt road:
Using the same colors used in the trees, paint a light wash – wet on wet in the grassy areas.  While the grass is still wet, drop in VanDyke brown at the base of the barn and pull up the color onto the barn sides for tall dried grasses. 

 The road is painted wet on wet with a wash of Payne's Gray and Van Dyke brown.  When the wash dries, spatter some of the same color paint on the road.  Leave some of the areas lighter for tire tracks. 

 Allow the road and the grassy areas to dry.

Painting the fencing:
Paint the fence posts, wet on wet, and drop in VanDyke brown, Payne's Gray and Ultramarine in random places on the fence posts.  Allow to dry.  Using a liner brush and a mix of Payne's Gray and Ultramarine, paint the barbed wire of the fence.  Do not paint straight lines.    Allow to dry. 

 Finishing touches:
Using a box cutter, scratch in some highlights on the fence wire, barn sides, roof and trees!

Congratulations!  Don’t forget to sign your name!

Happy Painting!


Wednesday, October 14, 2015



There is just something relaxing to walk barefoot on the beach…..the warmth of the sand and its smooth texture underfoot,  the rush of the wind, the spray of the waves, the scent of the ocean - salty, fishy and fresh, the sound of the waves and the seagulls mixed in with laughter of children at play……


So, if we can’t be there at least we can capture that moment on canvas!   


Since this painting shows only a person from mid-thigh down, it is easy for everyone to project themselves into the painting as the one walking on the beach and experiencing all the sensations that image evokes.  


The painting above is an acrylic on canvas using primarily a palette of blues and greens.  


Materials needed:

Canvas – I used a 16 x 20 stretched canvas.  


Flat Brush
Palette Knife
Round brush

Acrylic paints:  A basic set of acrylic paints which may include the following colors:

Hookers Green
Brunt Umber
Mars Black
Titanium White
Cadmium Yellow
Yellow Ochre
Ultramarine Blue
Cerulean Blue
Cobalt Blue
Raw Sienna
Alizarin Crimson


Note:  The paint list is large; however, this can be decreased by purchasing “flesh tint” for the legs and feet.  Also, you may want to limit the shades of colors used in the water and the jeans.    This painting can be achieved with a basic set of acrylic paints.  


How to make flesh tint:  

Mixing the colors to make flesh tint may seem challenging; however, it can easily be accomplished by mixing the following primary colors:


The various shades can be adjusted by adding white and/or increasing/decreasing the amount of one of the other primary colors to perfect the tone you would like.  


A word of caution:  Do not use black to deepen the skin tone; it can add a greenish tint to the color.


Painting Instructions:

Sketch the drawing on the canvas with minimal details.  You will only need the sand/ocean horizon line and the shape of the knees, legs and feet.  The details will be painted in after the basic background has been painted in.  


Background:  Ocean/Waves and Beach


Starting at the top of the painting with the deepest of your blue tones, work down the painting mixing and blending the various shades and colors of blue from deepest at the top to lightest at the shoreline.  Mix green into the water at the top third of the painting, but let the blue show through.  Do not paint in a straight line across, but vary the line to indicate the shape of the wave and the movement of the water.    I used a flat brush to put down the basic coat of paint and worked back in with a round brush swirling the paint to give movement.  Add touches of white paint to show wave breaks or ”white tops.”



Prepare a mix of paint for the sand using raw sienna mixed with white and a touch of yellow.  Vary the intensity of the color by increasing and decreasing the amount of white.  Where the sand and beach meet, swirl in white paint with a round brush where the waves hit the shore.


I allowed the background to dry somewhat so that then I painted the main part of the painting, I was not worried about smearing this paint into the other parts of the painting.  



The jeans can be any “wash” of denim you would like.  I used a darker denim to contrast and stand out from the ocean.  However, depending on how dark your ocean may be a light wash might be what is needed.  Base your denim shade on what shade your ocean turned out.    


Using a flat brush lay down your basic jean color working lighter and darker shades of the same color into create highlights, creases and wrinkles as well as the rolled up cuff.  Remember the rolled up cuff of the jean leg will be slight lighter than the outside of the pant leg.  


Legs and Feet:

Using your flesh tones either mixes or purchased paint, put in a base coat using a flat brush and work in darker and lighter shades of that tone to show shadows and highlights.  Remember this does not have to be details, create a feeling of movement – you are not painting every toe.  


Finishing Details:

Deepen the areas of sand around the feet using a flat brush and pulling the paint from deepest near the foot to lighter as it moves out in a horizontal line.    Add lighter and darker sand tones as well as white on the sand for highlights and shadows.  


Look over the rest of your painting and add highlight or touches of color here and there as needed.


Congratulations!  Sign your name; your painting is complete.  Now look at the painting and hear the sound of the waves and feel the sand under your feet…………………


Happy Painting!


Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Early Fall – On the Trail!

This watercolor painting was done from a photo taken on a recent hike in the Great Smoky Mountains.  Fall is one of my favorite seasons of the year to hike AND capture in paint!


The best way to start the painting is to analyze the scene and determine the colors in the landscape.   The Great Smoky Mountains are known by the smoky haze that rises over the mountain peaks.  This painting is of a vista along the trail in early morning before the sun peeked through the smoke.  The grasses are starting to die back, and there are gold and brown touches among the green grasses.  The trees, except for these evergreens, are slowing turning, but are still mostly green.  The background trees are cast in shadow and smoke.  


Materials Needed:


140# Watercolor paper – I use Arches


#12 round brush

Flat brush


Watercolor Paint:

Payne’s Gray

Sap Green


Yellow Ochre

Van Dyke Brown


Sketch the scene on your paper which has been taped to a board.   We will be executing this painting, as with most watercolors, by starting with the background and working forward – wet on wet.


Wet the top portion of your paper down to the horizon.  Using a pale wash of Payne’s Gray, paint in your sky using a flat brush and allowing the gray to form clouds, but leaving lots of white.    While this is still wet create areas of tree shapes with lighter in the background building into darker in the foreground.  Add more Payne’s Gray and a little bit of Ultramarine.   I used a large round brush for the tree shapes.   Leave lighter areas of gray and white space between the darker tree shapes to create the “smoke.”  Use a tissue or paper towel to blot out some of the excess paint to create cloud shapes.  This is painted down to the horizon with the green trees painted on top of this background.   Spray with water as needed to mist the trees.    Allow this to dry.


Layer in some pale shades of green for background trees, building in deeper color as you move forward to the trees in the midrange of the painting.  Deepen your green with ultramarine and add touches of this to indicate shadows in the trees.  Allow some of the lighter areas as well as background to show through.    Allow to dry.


Lay down your base for the grass by using a wet on wet technique of a light green and yellow ochre.  Drop in some of the deeper color of green and ultramarine under the trees for shadows.  While still wet pull up the taller grasses using shades of yellow ochre, VanDyke Brown and sap green.  At the base of the grasses drop in some deeper shades and pull up into the grasses.  Allow to dry.


Wet the trail area and using a round brush float in shades of gray and brown, letting some of the white paper show through in areas for highlights.  Allow to dry.  Using the same colors as the trail, spatter the area with paint to indicate rock, gravel, etc.  Don’t forget to cover areas of your painting that you do not want spattered.


For final touches, add a few pieces of tall grass.  Allow to dry.  Using a razor blade, scrape in some highlights in the grasses.


Congratulations!  Don’t forget to sign your name!


Happy Painting!










Plein Air Painting - A Battle of Wills!

Needless to say it has been way too long since I posed on my blog…..but I promise to try to do better.  Actually, I have been painting and gathering “inspiration” for my paintings and have been too busy to sit down and blog.    

Last fall, I spent a week at Arrowmont in Gatlinburg, TN participating in a plein air painting class.  During this time, a group of fellow artists went up into the mountains and painted trying to capture the subtle changes in the sun and shadows on the canvas. 

I usually paint in watercolor, but for this trip I chose to use acrylic paints.  This was an interesting change for me which I enjoyed immensely.    The painting above is one that I painted plein air with my easel set up by the side of a mountain stream.

In this blog, I’ll discuss the challenges in plein air painting as compared to painting in studio.

Where to start? 


1.       People
Actually, painting in plein air in a national park, especially one as busy as the Great Smoky Mountains, is not easy.  Fall is a popular time of year for the park for leaf viewing as some of the most beautiful mountain vistas in the world bring millions of visitors every year.  And, the novelty of an artist painting a landscape right in front of the tourist is a distraction that most tourists can’t ignore.    The artist’s time is limited and most tourists would like to talk about the painting…..not to mention, the one or two that would like to learn and ask to add a brush stroke or two to the painting.  (This one surprised me!)    However, I am an outgoing person and enjoyed the interactions, but had to keep painting and not stop to talk.  On the positive side, tourists are for the most part very complimentary - which gives a great boast to the ego.  Some of my fellow artists did run into one or two tourists that saw themselves as art critics. 

2.       Climate
We ran into numerous weather changes – sun, rain, wind, cold, heat….all in the same day!  We were prepared to dress in layers, but the rush of battling the elements when sudden rainstorms hit was quite a chore.  It never seemed to fail that as soon as we got to a location, set up and started painting, the weather would change.  Rain caused problems with all of the paints.  Wind caused many of us to hold tightly to our easel with one hand and the paint brush with the other.  Once a strong gush of wind blew over one of our artist’s easel and he chased it down  - almost falling over the side of the mountain.  He said that he had worked too hard on his painting to let blow down 3,000 feet – at least not without an effort to catch it.

3.      Bugs
Insect repellent works great and we all used it to keep the mosquitoes and flying insects away.   But, we could not spray our paintings and it was common to look up and see a gnat or some crawling bug working his way across the canvas of wet paint.  It did add some interesting designs. 

4.       Portability
Easels, paint and canvases:  we had to carry everything we needed with us including water, etc. for clean up.  All the equipment, no matter how pared down one thought they were, was heavy!  Boy, were we tired by the end of the day!

5.       Wild animals
Although the Smoky Mountains are known for black bear spotting, we never ran across one while out painting.  However, we did find bear footprints on the windshield of our van one morning.  We were serenaded by a bull moose in the North Carolina side of the mountains one day. 

 In summary:

The glare of the sun, rain and wind, biting insects or worrisome wild animals, as well as interruptions caused by fellow humans, all add to making what should seem like a delightful experience -- drawing or painting in the fresh air -- into a battle of wills.

It was a memorable experience and one that I would do again!

Below is a short description of Arrowmont.   They offer all kinds of classes and the experience of classes there is unforgettable!
Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts is an arts and crafts center located in Gatlinburg, TN.  The oldest craft school in Tennessee, Arrowmont offers workshops in arts and crafts such as painting, woodworking, glassblowing, photography, basket weaving and metalworking.    The campus contains the oldest buildings in Gatlinburg and comprises two historic district listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
For additional information or just some interesting reading, check out their site:
Happy Painting!