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events '04

Michele's Traveling Studio
French  Barge Journal

Image of Picnic chez Cezanne by Michele Cooper

"Picnic chez Cezanne" watercolor by Michele Cooper

Welcome to Michele's Traveling Studio Online! My name is Michele Cooper and through this web site I hope to keep in touch with my students, readers and friends in many countries around the world with whom I share a love for the art of painting watercolors. The Traveling Studio has just returned from France; a few days in Paris, then barging on the Loire, back to Paris and then painting in Monet's garden. 

We met at St. Michelle Winery in Woodinville to practice our wine tasting and receive final documents from Kathy, our travel agent.

I took 34 disks (averaging 28 digital photos each) during our journey. Check these pages for updates and photos every few days. For a complete workshop itinerary, go to our Barge Workshop page.

map of france
Workshop Location on the River Loire

The first stop on the tour is Paris, where we soak in the atmosphere and get into our travel mode.

Paris -- Arrival

Image of Metro entrance
Riding the Metro in Paris is on our list of intended experiences.

Debi with Margaret, Jane & Rachel arrive at Hotel Regina.
We will meet the rest of our group in the morning.

The Barge Workshop -- Along the Loire

image of Michele demonstrating on deck
As the scenery glides past, Michele paints her demonstration. 
image of class painting on deck
Even while descending a lock, the class is hard at work, knowing that any beverage they desire is available just steps away in the
air-conditioned salon.

The Wine, The Picnic, The Painting
line and wash sketch at Sancerre
"Vineyards & the Loire"
My demonstration of line & wash technique as we look out over the Loire valley from the hilltop at Sancerre.

image of Sancerre facilities
You can almost hear the choir.

Vernon & Giverny
The Bridge, La Roche Guyan, The Museum, The Gardens
image of bridge at Vernon
The famous bridge that links Vernon and Giverny.
(See the Barge Workshop page. for Monet's interpretation)

image of our salon at Giverny
Our salon at the B&B in Giverny. After meeting our hosts, Annick and Thierry, we drive down the street to visit the American Museum.

Jane, Michele, Rachel, Debi with Margaret at 
Musee d'Art Americain, Giverny

Michele, Gary, Jane & Rachel climbed to the top of La Roche Guyan.
Enter the doorway on the far right, climb 7 floors inside the Chateau, then continue climbing up hand chiseled steps inside the rock. Finally, negotiate the progressively narrowing steps within the tower and come out at the top for a fantastic view.

image of Debi reading menu
Debi reads the menu. . .in French. She and Margaret secured
a table for the rest of us while we explored La Roche Guyan.
Tomorrow is a milestone day for us.

image of Gary and Michele's room at Giverny
In our atelier, we wake. It is the day we will paint in Monet's garden.

Giverny -- Painting in Monet's Garden
image of Michele's easel at the lily pond
At the lily pond in Monet's garden, I painted my fan first. Having thoroughly warmed up (mentally and physically), I continued painting at my easel.

image of Michele's painting, Monet's lily pond
Ten more strokes ought to do it. If I don't get out of the sun now, I'm the one who will have the stroke!

Arles, Avignon & Aix-en-Provence
image of arched corridor, Coliseum, Arles
Our first morning in Arles and we couldn't wait to see the Coliseum. Odd that these arched corridors were our refuge from the heat, considering their history.

image of Arles, rooftops from the tower at the Coloseum
We emerge at the top of the tower and look across the arches at the rooftops of Arles.

image of laundry on a rooftop terrace, Arles
Laundry dries quickly on a 100 degree terrace.

Michele at Roman Theatre ruins, Arles
Michele at the ruins, Roman Theater, Arles.

image of intricate carvings in ruins of Arles Roman Theater
Once a fortress, its stones were later used for other buildings.
On the way to a modern concert, people pass among
ancient and intricately carved ruins at the Roman Theater.

image of woman feeding pigeons in the shade at Roman Theater

image of turtles in the fountain at our hotel, Hotel d'Arlatan
Keeping cool. A good idea for pigeons, turtles and artists.

image of L'Escaladou
L'Escaladou serves fresh Provençal dishes in Arles.

image of a Provencal Salad
Order un carafe d'eau, and prepare for the rest of your meal as your salad, merely the first course, arrives. But that's lunch.

After bread, starters, foie-gras, and entree--but before dessert, chocolates, nuts and mints--it's time for FROMAGE.
The upper left section is goat cheese, upper right is sheep, and lower section represents cow cheese. All these are arranged according to age and geographical source.

The antique carved stone and wood distinguish this doorway to a hotel.


Cheerful Provençal house wares.

I vote this the best gallery sign.

Mostly oils. You can buy in any size and with or without frame. 
They take all major credit cards. (Located on "Money Street.")

"Hill town of Eze"
Watercolor by Michele Cooper

Pont du Gard

Michele at Pont du Gard.

From the center of the Aqueduct, the river leads the eye to Nimes.

A photographer and his model take advantage of the light.

The Auberge at the Pont du Gard.

image of snail
Gary found a free range escargot on the way back from the Pont du Gard.

"Lavender with Sky"
Watercolor by Michele Cooper

"Lavender Hills"
Watercolor by Michele Cooper

Our rest stop on the toll road to Nice. . .
with lavender. A lovely way to end a splendid adventure.

A few souvenirs.
On arrival home, we have only one question:
Where's the fromage??

I have written a workbook for those on this journey, actual or virtual. It contains the lessons from the workshop, full color illustrations, photos and more. If you would like a copy, please contact Workbook@michelecooper.com.

For many of you a visit to this web site will be our first meeting, so perhaps you would like to read a little bit more about me and my connection to the art world. 

I hope you'll visit this site often and I would love to hear from you - my e-mail address is michele@michelecooper.com

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