Welcome to art afloat
Imagine painting and sketching while cruising the beautiful River Thames on a vintage Dutch Barge. Roy May, an amateur watercolour artist, has made this a reality.
A typical art cruise will start from our moorings in the delightful grounds of Bisham Abbey near Marlow, Bucks and once we are all settled onboard we gently cruise along the River Thames through Bucks, Berks and Oxon towards Henley. A wide range of inspiring vistas, unseen unless you are on the river, unveil themselves as we gently meander through areas of outstanding natural beauty. Passing through the beautiful Hambleden Valley, taking in specific areas of interest like Medmenham Abbey, Temple Island, the Henley Regatta course and then returing to our home stretch with Bisham’s 13th Century Church and William Tierney-Clark’s famous suspension bridge at Marlow.
The pace of the day is relaxed, flexible and set by those on the cruise with the aim of promoting creativity. Refreshments and a light lunch are provided on board. Expert tuition with pencil and watercolour sketching is provided through-out the day with an emphasis on producing quick rough sketches during the morning, then developing on the mornings work during the afternoon. As the cruise is aimed at both beginners and experienced artists we are always open to requests to return to locations or pause for a while, to absorb the beauty of the scenery or focus on interesting buildings, wildlife, the hustle and bustle of the locks or the other craft on the River. With so many things to inspire you the day will just float by in no time!
You are welcome to bring your usual watercolour and sketching materials. Easels are not appropriate but sketching boards will be provided on-board if required. If you are a beginner and don't yet have any kit, don’t worry about it, we will provide the materials for your day.
Tea and coffee will be provided throughout the day. Lunch, which is also included, will typically be artisan bread, cold meats, cheese, olives, salad, a glass of wine, fruit juice or water. Our boat is fully equipped with all relevant safety equipment and is skippered by a fully qualified crew, invariably Roy himself, who cannot resist the opportunity for a few quick sketches during coffee break and lunch.
You may wish to spend some time on the fore or aft deck of the boat so please dress accordingly for the weather, what we would ask is that you wear soft soled shoes.
Gift vouchers are available and groups with or without their own tutors are welcomed by arrangement. Do give us a ring to discuss your particular requirements, as our aim is to make your day as enjoyable and informative as possible.