Art courses

Art Days at Inishowen Artists' Retreat and Studio... all about them and what you can expect on the day.

Art Days

All art courses (we call them Art Days) are designed to enable participants to build confidence and identify individual process and style, which can be reflected on and developed as you progress on your creative journey as a beginner or as a professional. 

There is a huge fun element and an opportunity to reflect and explore colour, form, texture and space in your work.

Each course will have a maximum of 6 participants. This ensures quality time with our experienced resident tutor (or guest artist) and a more intimate, relaxed experience all round.

Book on an art course
Sinead Smyth teaching art to a class

What to expect

Our Art Days run from 10am-4.30pm, breaking for lunch (40 mins) at an agreed time with participants, and a few tea breaks in morning and afternoon as we work.

A light lunch of vegetable soups and breads will be provided.  We can cater for vegan, gluten and dairy free needs. For other specific diets or allergens, please bring your own lunch as we cannot ensure all allergens can be catered for. Please let us know on booking if you have specific dietary requirements.

A landscape painting by Sinead Smyth

What do I bring?

Please bring your own materials if possible. We can supply materials at a reasonable price, but you would need to let us know in advance. A suggested materials list will be supplied before the course.

There are brushes in the studio available for your use and you can share your paints with artist friends to reduce your load for transport.

A small selection of papers/canvases and paints will be available at the cottage for those in a rush… please let us now if you have a preference of paper/canvas size in advance and we can arrange this for you at an additional cost.

Suggested paints for your palette: burnt umber, burnt sienna, cadmium red, cadmium yellow (mid hue), cadmium yellow (deep hue), Prussian blue, titanium white.

A range of flat brushes would be useful. You should bring four canvases of the size you are happy to use. Compositions can be started for you to take away and complete in your own time.

Additional information

Your own photographs and/or prints may also be useful, depending on weather, as reference materials.

We ask artists to use an environmentally-friendly solution for diluting their paints and cleaning brushes. There are several orange-based solvents widely available online.

Please bring two screw top glass jars for transporting any solvents and linseed (or similar) oils and a notebook is always useful!

We are in the hills of Donegal so suitable footwear and clothing are recommended.

If you use water-based oils, which can be quite sticky, walnut oil can be a useful diluting agent… you can experiment and see what you think.

Painting with oils

Staying over

Overnight self-catering accommodation is available in the cottage for a maximum of 4 people in 2 twin bedrooms. The basics of milk, tea/coffee, homemade jam etc will be provided for resident artists and we are happy to share the extra produce from our organic vegetable garden, depending on the time of year.

We have Rowan our dog, who is a bit nervous of people but adorable when she gets to know you, and two cats, Bella and Luna who are very friendly. 

Please let us know on booking if you have any dietary requirements. All bedding and towels, etc are provided. Please remember our cottage is old, cosy and intimate, with a sense of luxury.

Other high quality accommodations are available locally and we’re happy to make recommendations.

Racoon asleep in a tree