A Weekend of Painting and Bonding with Fabulous Women

Several months ago I booked myself into a painting retreat weekend to coincide with my birthday.  The venue was quite close to where I live so travelling to and fro’ each day Friday, Saturday and Sunday for full days of painting was easy.

Now I am no painter, in fact this is my first real foray into the art, so I booked in with some trepidation.  Two others had also booked the weekend, one with some experience and one, like me, without.  So I felt pretty comfortable.  Each morning started with a cup of your choice of tea and a general chat. We then had a morning meditation led by our tutor Shani.  This meditation brought forth all sorts of feelings for us all. Tears were shed, and feelings shared and a process of bonding with the other participants, which I hadn’t really expected, took place.  It set us up beautifully for the day ahead.

We set about learning Shani’s process for painting our “hero” painting.  Once started I couldn’t believe that I would be leaving with a completed canvas on Sunday.  The canvasses were 1 metre square, so somewhat daunting.

We enjoyed home cooked lunches and wine on the verandah (weather permitting) set high in beautiful Wonga Park/Warrandyte. Florence the standard poodle kept us company for the whole weekend too. (Florence told me she had had seventeen puppies in her younger days).  A few noisy magpies chortled away outside and stared at us through the windows whilst stealing sharing the cats food.

Back to the painting though.  It was hard work, much harder than I had anticipated. We worked through until 5pm each of the three days, and then stopped for another cuppa and a chat.  I can’t tell you how special the time was.  Four fabulous women being open and honest, sharing a wonderful experience together and supporting each other through the process. It is an experience that will stay with me for a long time to come.


Shani Geri Susan Barbara workshop


That’s me at the back, Florence at the front, Shani in the middle and the other lovely participants enjoying a glass of bubbles at the end of the weekend.

Here is my finished work. It’s not perfect by any means, however, I feel comfortable hanging it in my home and proud of my accomplishment.

Painting 5 (1)

So if there is something that you would like to try, my message to you is, find a way and go for it.  It’s very liberating.

Note to self:  Suggest a smaller signature and less conspicuous next time.  Doh! 


Happy Crafting




31 thoughts on “A Weekend of Painting and Bonding with Fabulous Women

  1. Barbara that is magnificent for a first time. Keep it up I would love to say that I know a fantastic(famous)
    Cheers Sheila


  2. Ohh very well done you clever, painters fingers, Barbara!
    I know how daunting big canvases can be, so for this to be your first is just ahh..ma..ZING!

    Your finished piece is incredible, and do you know, I kind of like that you can see your signature for it’s a big nod to you becoming the artists you are meant to be.

    Well done Barbara, I think you’re incredible!
    love ~ Cobs. x

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow. That looks fabulous, Barb. I would love to do a retreat like that, though the size of the canvas is indeed a bit intimidating. You pulled it off and it sounds like you have a wonderful time too. 😀


  4. Thank you, it was a wonderful experience. Keep it in mind for yourself in the future. It doesn’t have to be painting it can be anything really. Just take some time and find something just for you.


  5. Years ago, during a conversation with a friend, I mentioned I had no talent for painting. She looked me square in the eye, and said matter of factly, “yes you do” Long story short, she encouraged me to try anyway, and several paintings later, I can say that, “yes, I can paint”. Not professional by any means, but several paintings hang in our home.
    Very nice picture. You should be proud, it is indeed, beautiful.


    1. I do agree with you. I have always created some sort of craft and my friends would say I was clever. My reply was that the only difference between us was that I do it and they don’t. Thank you for the follow and thank you so much for the lovely and encouraging comment.


    1. Hi Judith, yes I could certainly have whisked the lovely Florence home with me at the end of the weekend. Thank you for your kind words. I am very happy with my painting.

      Liked by 1 person

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